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Federal Appeals Court Invalidates Second Enzo Biochem Patent in Three Months

NEW YORK – The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit today handed down an opinion affirming a previous ruling against Enzo Biochem in a patent infringement lawsuit brought against Hologic and Becton Dickinson.

Enzo sued Hologic in 2015 in federal court for infringement of two of its patents: US Patent No. 6,992,180, "Oligo- or polynucleotides comprising phosphate-moiety labeled nucleotides," and US Patent No. 7,064,197, "System, array and non-porous solid support comprising fixed or immobilized nucleic acids."

The products allegedly infringing on the '180 patent included the Procleix Parvo/HAV assays, and coagulation products such as the Invader Factor II test and Invader Factor V test. Additionally, Enzo claimed that Hologic's PCA3 products, all Aptima products, and all Procleix products infringed on the '197 patent.

In 2017, the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) declared the '197 patent unpatentable, declaring the claims made in the patent "anticipated or obvious." Enzo appealed the decisions, and Becton Dickinson joined Hologic as co-petitioner against Enzo's appeal. Hologic withdrew from the case before the appeal was heard, leaving Becton Dickinson as the only plaintiff.

The appeal was argued in April, and the appeals court has now validated the PTAB's decision. The judges noted that they found Enzo's arguments unpersuasive and that the patents were indeed invalid for reasons of obviousness.

A spokesman for Enzo said the company is reviewing the ruling and declined to provide further comment.

In June, the appeals court also upheld a previous ruling against Enzo in a patent infringement lawsuit the firm had filed against Roche Diagnostics, Becton Dickinson, Abbott Laboratories, and several of their subsidiaries, in relation to the '180 patent. In a sealed opinion, the court terminated that case on the merits after the parties presented their oral arguments.