Forest Laboratories, LLC v. Sigmapharm Laboratories

Knobbe Martens
Contact

Knobbe Martens

Federal Circuit Summary
 

Before Prost, Dyk, and Moore. Appeal from District of Delaware.

Summary:  A district court’s construction of a claim term that is contrary to the plain language of the claims and usage of the term in the specification was erroneous.

Sigmapharm, Hikma, Breckenridge, Alembic, and Amneal filed ANDAs with the FDA seeking to market generic versions of Saphris, a drug product sold by Forest.  Saphris is an antipsychotic drug administered under the tongue.  Forest sued for patent infringement.  After a bench trial, the district court held, inter alia, that Forest had not established infringement of one of the asserted claims as to Alembic and Breckenridge because the claim at issue was directed to “a method for treating tension, excitation, anxiety, and psychotic and schizophrenic disorders” and Alembic’s and Breckenridge’s ANDA products were indicated for treatment of “manic episodes” associated with bipolar I disorder.  Forest appealed the district court’s finding of non-infringement by Breckenridge and Alembic.

The Federal Circuit vacated and remanded for the district court to reconsider infringement of the relevant claim under a corrected claim construction for “excitation.”  The Federal Circuit held that the district court erred in treating “excitation” as limited to “excitation disorders,” not to symptoms of such, because “[t]he use of the conjunction ‘and’ before ‘psychotic and schizophrenic disorders’ indicates that ‘psychotic and schizophrenic disorders’ is a distinct item on the list, and that unlike the terms ‘psychotic’ and ‘schizophrenic,’ the words ‘tension,’ ‘excitation,’ and ‘anxiety’ are not describing ‘disorders.’ This is consistent with how ‘excitation’ is used elsewhere in the specification.”  The Federal Circuit construed “excitation” to refer to a symptom of a disease or disorder and remanded the case for the district court to consider infringement using the proper construction of “excitation.”

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Knobbe Martens | Attorney Advertising

Written by:

Knobbe Martens
Contact
more
less

Knobbe Martens on:

Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Custom Email Digest
- hide
- hide

This website uses cookies to improve user experience, track anonymous site usage, store authorization tokens and permit sharing on social media networks. By continuing to browse this website you accept the use of cookies. Click here to read more about how we use cookies.