NMT Medical today announced a favorable decision by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Board of Appeals relating to the Company's patent infringement actions against AGA Medical Corp.
In December 1998, NMT filed a patent infringement suit against AGA Medical claiming that certain of AGA's products infringe U.S. Patent No. 5,108,420 (the '420 Patent), which is exclusively licensed by NMT. During the litigation, AGA identified certain third party patents that it argued would invalidate the claims of the '420 Patent. In September 2003, the Court dismissed NMT's suit against AGA without prejudice to NMT's ability to refile the suit after the conclusion of the reexamination proceedings.
Although a Patent Office examiner initially rejected the claims of the '420 Patent, the Patent Office Board of Appeals reversed the examiner's rejection of the claims on August 19, 2004 and returned the reexamination for action consistent with its decision.
John E. Ahern, NMT's President and CEO, said, "The Board of Appeals' decision represents an important step in our patent infringement efforts against AGA. As a medical technology innovator, NMT Medical has developed and obtained the rights to an impressive portfolio of patents and intellectual property that we will continue to defend aggressively."