German court sides with Boston Scientific rival in stent patent fight

Boston Scientific's ($BSX) ongoing stent patent fight against a smaller rival took a turn for the worse in a German court. OrbusNeich can now prevent the Massachusetts medical device giant from marketing certain stent models in Germany, thanks to a preliminary injunction that affirmed they violate two of its patents.

For Boston Scientific, however, the fight is far from over.

"Boston Scientific strongly believes that our products do not infringe Orbus' patents," the company said in a statement emailed to FierceMedicalDevices, noting also that it "will appeal the decision and seek remedies for loss of revenue stemming from the injunction."

"In the meantime," Boston Scientific notes, "we will abide by the German court's rulings."

To be sure, the decision has some bite. As OrbusNeich points out in its announcement, the ruling allows for seizure of any of the affected stents in Germany that have been distributed but not used yet. At issue are small vessel, small workhorse and workhorse model stents that are part of Boston Scientific's Promus Element, Promus Element Plus, Omega, Taxus Element, Synergy and Promus Premier product lines.

OrbusNeich is fighting to win. Earlier this year, the company expanded the scope of its patent infringement lawsuit into Ireland and is pursuing legal action in the Netherlands. OrbusNeich also scored a partial win in the European Patent Office earlier this year, which granted a favorable ruling over one of the disputed patents, giving both Boston Scientific and commercialization partner Terumo a sobering defeat. OrbusNeich, which is based in Hong Kong but maintains operations in The Netherlands, China and Ft. Lauderdale, FL, said it was pleased with the preliminary injunction (granted in Dusseldorf Regional Court).

"It reinforces both the strength of our intellectual property rights and our efforts to defend these rights on a global basis," OrbusNeich Chairman and CEO Al Novak said in a statement.

But the legal challenge comes at a horrible time for Boston Scientific, as the struggling company continues a quest to reverse declining revenue, reduce debt and restore steady revenue growth.

- read the OrbusNeich release

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