Stratagene will pay Third Wave $10.75 million in cash to settle a patent infringement case related to PCR technology. This out-of-court settlement is in relation to the suit currently in the Federal Circuit in Washington D.C. The companies also have agreed to stay any further litigation for nine months.
In 2004, Third Wave claimed that Stratagene’s qPCR and RT-PCR reagents violated some of the more than 30 patents on Third Wave’s Invader product line. The company thus filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in Wisconsin. Stratagene later appealed in the Federal Circuit in Washington, D.C.
Regarding Stratagene's suit against Third Wave in U.S. District Court in Delaware, the firms will either seek dismissal without prejudice or an extension of the trial date. Additionally, they agreed to resolve that case or any other disputes by either company choosing to arbitrate a patent dispute or to resolve it through a royalty-bearing license.
"We're pleased to resolve this outstanding legal matter in a manner benefiting both companies," says Joseph A. Sorge, M.D., chairman and CEO of Stratagene. "With this settlement, we will be able to redeem our $21-million appeal bond and strengthen our balance sheet by $10.25 million."
"This settlement is a positive outcome for both Third Wave and Stratagene," notes Kevin T. Conroy, president and chief executive of Third Wave. "The settlement has the dual benefit of increasing Third Wave's cash balance to more than $50 million and allowing us to avoid the multimillion-dollar expense of ongoing litigation."