Medtronic, Inc. announced that a Delaware jury rendered verdicts in patent litigation between Medtronic and the ACS subsidiary of Guidant Corporation. The jury found the Guidant Lau patents valid and infringed by some of Medtronic stents, including the S7 and Driver stents. However, there will be another hearing regarding Medtronic’s claim that Guidant’s patent is unenforceable due to “inequitable conduct,” which of course, is every patent litigators way of saying hello to the other side. Medtronic claims Guidant showed “willful disregard of patent filing procedures.”

While it ain’t over till it’s over, Medtronic could end up paying hundreds of millions of dollars to Guidant. What’s interesting is that this started when Medtronic sued Guidant for infringement and lost and Guidant turned around and sued Medtronic. In other stent stunts, Guidant paid $425 million to Johnson & Johnson for infringing its stent patents. Now, J&J has now agreed to buy Guidant for $25.4 billion. According to the report, stents are likely to generate over $5 billion in yearly sales so the stakes are high for every player.

See the full report here.

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