Medtronic (NYSE:MDT) said a European patent decision prompted a German court to lift a ban there on sales of its CoreValve device as part of its patent row with Edwards Lifesciences (NYSE:EW) over their competing transcatheter aortic valve implants.
"Medtronic is very pleased with this decision as it will ensure that patients in Germany who need aortic valve replacement will have access to this life-saving therapy," structural heart business president Dr. John Liddicoat said in prepared remarks. "As a result of the ruling, Medtronic will resume distribution of the CoreValve system in Germany."
In July the court ruled that Medtronic’s CoreValve TAVI infringes Edwards Lifesciences’ Spenser patent, forcing it to cede the German market to Edwards and its Sapien valve. But last month the European Patent Office issued a preliminary, non-binding ruling that the Edwards patent at the center of the dispute in Germany is invalid.
That prompted the Higher Regional Court Karlsruhe to rescind the ban on CoreValve sales in Germany because "it could not assume ‘with sufficient likelihood’ that the Spenser patent is valid," Medtronic said.
"Medtronic will post the €5 million [`$6.7 million] bond required by the order as soon as possible and then resume sales in Germany," according to a press release.
Back in 2010, Medtronic won a round in another German court in its battle with Edwards, after the Appellate Court of Düsseldorf upheld a lower court’s ruling that the CoreValve device does not infringe on the German Sapien patent.