Palomar sues for patent infringement

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Palomar Medical Technologies has announced that it filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts against Candela Corporation for patent infringement.

In this lawsuit, Palomar has accused Candela's light-based hair removal systems, including the GentleLase and GentleYag, of infringing U.S. Patent No. 5,735,844 ("the '844 Patent"). Palomar has an exclusive license to the '844 Patent from the General Hospital Corporation in Boston, Massachusetts. The patent claims asserted against Candela in this lawsuit include the same claims that Palomar successfully asserted against Cutera, Inc. as well as additional patent claims.

Palomar is seeking an injunction against further infringement, as well as monetary damages. If Palomar prevails at trial, Candela may be ordered to pay tens of millions in damages for past sales and ordered to stop selling infringing products. Palomar also alleges that Candela's activities constitute willful infringement of the '844 Patent. If Palomar prevails on such a claim, Candela could be forced to pay up to triple the amount of the original damages assessment.

Patricia Davis, Senior Vice President and General Counsel of Palomar, commented, "For over 7 years, Palomar has sent Candela letters notifying Candela that its products need a license to the '844 Patent and offering to grant Candela such a license. We initiated this litigation to protect our rights only after we determined that further negotiations would not provide positive results. The '844 Patent has been tested in two prior lawsuits and we are confident of its strength. In Palomar's lawsuit against Cutera, the Court's rulings, including the Markman Ruling and the Summary Judgment ruling, confirmed the breadth and validity of the '844 Patent. We intend to continue our strategy of vigorously enforcing our patent position against Candela, Alma Lasers, Inc. and other infringing competitors who refuse to take a license."

Joseph P. Caruso, President and Chief Executive Officer of Palomar, commented, "Many companies have taken advantage of the high growth of the light-based cosmetic industry by offering products covered by the '844 Patent and its parent U.S. Patent No. 5,595,568. Palomar intends to license such companies or prevent continued infringement. This strategy has and should continue to provide significant financial benefit to Palomar and its shareholders."


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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