Volcano (NSDQ:VOLC) said a federal jury in Delaware handed it a loss in the 2nd patent infringement lawsuit between the medical device company and arch-rival St. Jude Medical (NYSE:STJ), ruling that 3 of 4 VOLC patents aren’t infringed by St. Jude.
Volcano voluntarily pulled the 4th patent from the case, according to a regulatory filing.
Volcano won the 1st round earlier this week, when another First State jury ruled that 2 Volcano patents for fractional flow reserve technology don’t infringe St. Jude Medical and that 2 St. Jude patents are invalid.
St. Jude agreed that older versions of its PressureWire FFR device infringed a Volcano patent and that the damages phase of that case has not been scheduled, according to the filing.
"We have always preferred to compete in the marketplace with our innovative products, rather than in a courtroom," Volcano CEO Scott Huennekens said in prepared remarks. "However, St. Jude Medical continues to take aggressive legal action that, if successful, would restrict market competition and reduce patients’ access to our products. Under these circumstances, we had little recourse but to take the steps necessary to protect our innovations and intellectual property rights, and ensure that patients and doctors continue to have access to our live-saving products. We are pleased with the jury verdict from last week recognizing our leadership in the fractional flow reserve marketplace."
That marketplace is likely to see increased competition, and not just between these 2 rivals, after study results released this week showing the cost-effectiveness of FFR-guided interventions. The study could also help boost the sagging stents businesses of the major players in that market, Boston Scientific (NYSE:BSX), Abbott (NYSE:ABT) and Medtronic (NYSE:MDT).