(This is a daily report on global news about patents, trademarks, copyright and other intellectual property topics. Corrects spelling of Rory Radding’s first name in Edwards Angell item in IP Moves section.)
July 14 (Bloomberg) -- Atossa Genetics Inc., a biotechnology company focused on cellular and molecular diagnostic tests, said it acquired a patent for breast cancer diagnosis and risk assessment.
Atossa got patent 7,879,614 and a pending unpublished patent application from the Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation of Santa Monica, California, the Seattle-based company said in a statement. The patent, which was issued Feb. 1, and the pending application cover the manufacture, use and sale of a biomarker test to examine carbohydrates in nipple aspirate fluid.
In a recent clinical trial at the University of California at San Francisco, according to the statement, the test was positive in all the women in the study who had previously been diagnosed with cancer and negative in 75 percent of the women tested who were cancer-free.
The test uses no radiation, is painless and inexpensive and takes less than five minutes to administer, according to Atossa. It’s intended to be used as an adjunct to mammography for women 40 to 75 and for younger women at high risk for breast cancer.
According to the database of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, the application for the issued patent was filed in December 2007 with the assistance of Knobbe, Martens, Olson & Bear LLP of Irvine, California.
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SAP Asks Court to Cut Oracle’s $1.3 Billion Damage Award
SAP AG, the business-software maker ordered by a jury to pay $1.3 billion to Oracle Corp., told a judge the verdict was based on speculation about Oracle’s losses and should be cut to no more than $408 million.
A lawyer for SAP, Greg Lanier, said at a hearing yesterday in federal court in Oakland, California, that during a trial last year Oracle overstated its losses from copyright infringement by an SAP unit. SAP asked U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton to reduce the damage award or order a new trial.
“I have not decided what I am going to do,” the judge said. She later told lawyers on both sides not to read too much into an earlier ruling denying an SAP motion for summary judgment, a decision in its favor without trial. “I didn’t say Oracle was entitled to such damages. It is still up to Oracle to present non-speculative evidence of damages.”
Oracle, based in Redwood City, California, won a lawsuit in November accusing SAP’s U.S.-based TomorrowNow software- maintenance unit of making hundreds of thousands of illegal downloads and several thousand copies of Oracle’s software to avoid paying licensing fees and to steal customers. The jury award was the largest ever for copyright infringement.
Oracle maintained at trial that its damages should represent the value of a hypothetical license that the unit would have had to pay for the software it infringed.
Such a license would never have existed between two fierce competitors, so the damage award should have been based on profits Oracle lost and SAP gained as a result of the infringement, Walldorf, Germany-based SAP said in court filings. That number is $28 million to $407.8 million, SAP said.
Geoffrey Howard, an attorney for Oracle, argued yesterday that SAP’s request to reduce the damages “would require the court to reverse itself on motions it has made repeatedly and require the court to weigh trial evidence” that was already decided by the jury.
If a new trial is ordered, Hamilton should allow Oracle to present evidence of its expected revenue from certain sales it would have made if not for the infringement, something she excluded from the case, Oracle said in filings. That would boost the hypothetical license value by another $500 million, the company said in the filings.
The case is Oracle Corp. v SAP AG, 07-01658, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California (Oakland).
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Stillwater Artisanal Ales Says Stillwater Brewing Co. Infringes
Stillwater Artisanal Ales LLC, a Baltimore-based brewery, sued beermaker Stillwater Brewing Co. of Stillwater, Minnesota, for trademark infringement.
Stillwater Brewing “knowingly and willfully” used an identical copy of the Maryland brewer’s trademark in connection with its sale of beer, Stillwater Artisanal Ales said in a complaint filed July 12 in federal court in Minnesota. Those actions are causing confusion in the marketplace and at beer competitions and festivals, according to the complaint.
Stillwater Artisanal Ales objected to the Minnesota company’s participation in the American Craft Beef Fest for “the specific purpose of competing against” the similarly named brewer in the national and international marketplace.
Zachary S. Morgan, one of the Minnesota brewery’s co- owners, said in an e-mail yesterday that his company is named Stillwater after the town where it is based. “The name denotes a geographic location in which the brewery is operated,” he said.
Stillwater Artisanal Ales asked the court to bar the Minnesota brewer’s use of the Stillwater mark, and for the destruction of all infringing promotional materials. It also seeks cancellation of the stillwaterbrewingco.com Internet domain name, and awards of profits related to the alleged infringement, money damages, attorney fees, litigation costs, and extra damages to punish the brewery for its actions.
The Maryland brewery is represented by Elizabeth A. Zidones and Scott W. Johnston of Minneapolis-based Merchant & Gould PC.
The case is Stillwater Artisanal Ales LLC V. Stillwater Brewing Co LLC., 0:11-cv-01878-JRT, SER, U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota.
Belgian Law Firm Loses Challenge to Domain Name Registration
Office Kirkpatrick SA, a 159-year-old Belgian IP consulting firm, lost an Internet domain-name dispute with a Las Vegas resident.
An administrative panel of the World Intellectual Property Organization’s Arbitration and Mediation Center turned back the challenge by the La Hulpe, Belgium-based firm to Fred Kirkpatrick’s registration of “Kirkpatrick.com.”
The law firm argued that Fred Kirkpatrick’s domain name was confusingly similar to its trademark and that it was registered or acquired just for the purpose of trying to sell it to the trademark owner. It also said Fred Kirkpatrick earns referral fees from advertisers who place their ads on his otherwise inactive site.
The panel said that Fred Kirkpatrick had adequately demonstrated a legitimate interest in the domain name, and that it couldn’t be proven he had registered it in bad faith.
The panel found that the law firm didn’t act in bad faith in challenging the registration. It said that the firm “has not been shown to have been aware of the fatal flaw in its case, namely that the respondent is a real person.”
The firm can be found online at Kirkpatrick.eu.
The case is Office Kirkpatrick SA v. Fred Kirkpatrick, D2011-0767, WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center Administrative Panel Decision.
Muhammad Ali Sues Kobo for Using ‘Butterfly’ Slogan in Ad
Muhammad Ali Enterprises LLC sued Kobo Inc., accusing the digital bookseller of using the former boxer’s “Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee” slogan in an advertisement without permission.
The trademark infringement complaint, filed yesterday in federal court in Manhattan, alleges that Kobo improperly used the slogan last month in a full-page New York Times ad for its eReader. Ali’s New York-based company has registered the phrase as a trademark with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
The ad “made commercial use of the Muhammad Ali slogan and Muhammad Ali’s name without permission from or compensation to Muhammad Ali Enterprises,” according to the complaint.
Karina Tang, spokeswoman for Toronto-based Kobo, had no immediate comment.
According to court papers, Muhammad Ali Enterprises was formed in 2006 for “promoting Muhammad Ali’s legacy throughout the United States and the world, including the licensing of Muhammad Ali’s identity.” The company said it has all right, interest and title to the boxing champion’s identity.
Ali’s website -- www.ali.com -- has an application for potential licensees and a list of companies that are licensed to use IP related to the boxer. Among current licensees are Vringo Inc., Electronic Arts Inc., JEM Sportswear Inc., DC Comics, Sony BMG Music Entertainment International Inc., Japan’s Uniqlo Co., and Italy’s A Moda SpA and Dolce & Gabbana.
Mohammad Ali Enterprises is represented by Robert L. Sherman and Natalie G. Furman of Los Angeles-based Paul Hastings Janofsky & Walker LLP.
The case is Muhammad Ali Enterprises v. Kobo Inc., 1:11-cv- 04825, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).
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Edwards Angell Snares Head of MoFo’s New York IP Practice
Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge LLP said it hired Rory Radding, the former head of Morrison & Foerster LLP’s New York- based intellectual property practice.
Radding, a litigator, has also previously practiced at the now-defunct New York IP specialty firm Pennie & Edmonds, Boston- based Edwards Angell said in a July 11 statement.
Before he was a lawyer, Radding was a pharmaceutical chemist at Wellcome Research Laboratory and an environmental chemist at Union Carbide Corp., according to the profile on the firm’s website.
He has represented clients in trial and appellate courts and before the U.S. International Trade Commission, the firm said. He has litigated IP cases involving LED lighting, plastic manufacture, ring laser gyroscopes, avionics, communications, drugs, computer controllers, data compression, impact sensors, bicycles, candy, wine, personal-consumer products, and television commercials, according to the profile.
Radding got his undergraduate degree from Hamilton College and his law degree from Albany Law School of Union University.
Loeb & Loeb Adds Brian G. Arnold to Expand IP Ligation Group,
Loeb & Loeb LLP hired Brian G. Arnold for its IP litigation group, the Los Angeles-based firm said in a statement.
Arnold joins from Irvine, California-based Thomas Whitelaw. He has also practiced at Chicago’s Kirkland & Ellis LLP.
He has litigated patent cases involving portable digital audio devices, software, spinal instrument systems, computer storage devices, optical displays, injectors for medical imaging systems, slot machines, automotive service equipment, computer- related imaging systems and food, according to the statement.
He has also done transactional work involving IP licensing, the firm said.
Arnold has an undergraduate degree in mathematics from Pomona College, a master’s degree in education from the Claremont Graduate University and a law degree from Loyola Law School Los Angeles.
--With assistance from Joel Rosenblatt, Pamela MacLean and Karen Gullo in San Francisco. Editors: Andrew Dunn, Peter Blumberg.
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