Smith & Nephew, USPTO, Nike, Dotcom:Intellectual Property

Smith & Nephew Plc (SN/) won an appeals court ruling reinstating an $85 million patent-infringement verdict against Arthrex Inc. over surgical anchors used in shoulder surgery.

A trial judge erred in overturning the jury verdict, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington said in an opinion posted yesterday on its website. The case was remanded to the trial judge for further proceedings.

The dispute, first filed in 2004, is over devices that are anchored to a bone to repair tears in the rotator cuff or in the labrum, a fibrous ring in the shoulder socket. The June 2011 trial was the third in the case, and the jury found that Naples, Florida-based Arthrex knew that its anchor used steps similar to those covered by the patent.

“We see no reason to disturb that finding by the jury,” Circuit Judge Alan Lourie wrote for the 2-1 majority.

Circuit Judge Raymond Clevenger, in dissent, said the jury’s verdict won by London-based Smith & Nephew was “not supported by substantial evidence,” so he would have affirmed the trial judge’s decision in December 2011 to overturn the verdict.

“The reinstatement of the June 2011 jury award of $85 million for Arthrex’s infringement activities is affirmation of the innovation coming from Smith & Nephew,” Joe Metzger, a spokesman for Smith & Nephew, said by telephone. “We will continue to defend our intellectual property rights from infringement by others.”

Lisa Gardiner, a spokeswoman for Arthrex, didn’t immediately return a call and an e-mail seeking comment.

The case is Smith & Nephew Inc. v. Arthrex Inc., 2012-1265, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (Washington). The lower court case is Smith & Nephew Inc. v. Arthrex Inc., 04cv29, U.S. District Court, District of Oregon (Portland).

USPTO, Smithsonian to Open ‘Innovation Pavilion’ in Washington

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, together with the Smithsonian Institution, have agreed to open an “Innovation Pavilion” in the 132-year-old Arts and Industries Building on the National Mall in Washington.

The building, presently closed for renovation, will reopen in 2014 and will feature exhibitions about American innovation and educational programs, the patent office said in a statementyesterday.

It will also be the site of recognition ceremonies highlighting the role patents play in supporting innovation.

The patent office and the Smithsonian will also jointly offer an Innovation Exposition in June at the patent office headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia.

The Arts and Industries Building, which opened in 1881, was the original home of the Smithsonian’s national museum. The building was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1971.

Samsung Galaxy Doesn’t Infringe Apple Design Rights, Court Rules

Samsung Electronics Co.’s “Galaxy” tablets don’t infringe the design rights for Apple Inc. (AAPL)’s iPad, a Dutch court ruled, according to a MacWorld report.

Apple’s registered “Community Design,” an EU intellectual property right, isn’t infringed by a number of products of the Korean technology company, the District Court of the Hague rules, according to MacWorld.

The court also ordered Cupertino, California-based Apple to pay Samsung’s litigation costs of 137,357 euros ($169,512), and warned the company it faces fines of as much as 100,000 euros a day if it tries to get in the way of the Galaxy sales, MacWorld reported.

The disputed design, registered with the E.U. in 2004, was also the subject of an unsuccessful Apple suit in the Netherlands in 2011, according to MacWorld.


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