GI Dynamics and Gore headed to court in patent dispute

The patent squabble between GI Dynamics ($GID) and supplier W.L. Gore & Associates looks like it will finally make it to court, after a judge's ruling approved all but one of GI's claims in a countersuit.

The two companies are suing each other over the rights to market EndoBarrier, a bypass tube designed to treat Type 2 diabetes and obesity. The latest ruling sets the stage for trial, as each company has claims cleared for court. While no  date has been set, the two companies are scheduled for a final pretrial conference in July.

Gore originally filed suit in 2010, claiming it was co-owner of EndoBarrier's patent. During the device's development, the two companies signed supplier agreements, with GI agreeing to make milestone payments to Gore based on sales, as MassDevice reports. But Gore claims that it has the right to make and sell the intestinal tubes on its own, hence the suit.

GI filed a countersuit later that year, claiming that Gore has no ownership of the patents, misused trade secrets, and breached contract and confidence. A judge tossed one of the company's trade secret claims, but ruled that the rest may proceed to trial.

EndoBarrier is available in parts of Europe, South America and Australia. The company is planning to expand its marketing base in Europe, and the device is still considered investigational by the FDA. In April, EndoBarrier was implanted into its first patients, leading company stock to rise by 7%.

- read the statement from GI
- get MassDevice's take