Indianapolis, Indiana — Endotach, LLC (“Endotach”) of Plano, Texas sued alleging that Cook Medical Incorporated (“Cook Medical”) of Bloomington, Indiana infringed two patents: Endovascular Bypass Graft, Patent No. 5,122,154, and Endovascular Stent with Secure Mounting Means, Patent No. 5,593,417, which have been issued by the U.S. Patent Office.
The patents, both of which were issued in the 1990s, were granted to Dr. Valentine Rhodes, an award-winning surgeon who practiced in the field of vascular medicine for over 30 years. The patents are directed to intraluminal and endovascular grafts for placement within a blood vessel, duct or lumen to hold it open. As it pertains to this lawsuit, the patents-in-suit are used for revascularization of aneurysms or stenosis occurring in blood vessels which includes anchoring projections to aid in securing the graft in place within the blood vessel.
Upon the death of Dr. Rhodes, the patents-in-suit passed as part of his estate to his wife, Brenda Rhodes. While Mrs. Rhodes remains the owner of the patents, Endotach asserts that it is the exclusive licensee and has the right to enforce the patents against all infringers.
In its complaint, patent attorneys for Endotach asserted infringement of one or more claims in each of the patents-in-suit. It seeks a judgment that the patents-in-suit have been infringed, either literally and/or under the doctrine of equivalents; damages, including treble damages; costs; interest; attorneys’ fees and an injunction.
This complaint was filed to err on the side of caution. A previous matter, Endotach LLC v. Cook Medical Incorporated, Civil Action No. 1:12-cv-01630-LJM-DKL, which was initiated by a complaint making similar allegations, is currently pending before the same court. However, in that matter, Cook Medical has challenged the sufficiency of the transfer of the exclusive license to Endotach and, thus, Endotach’s standing to bring that prior lawsuit. Pursuant to that allegation, Cook Medical asserted that the matter should be dismissed. That motion is still pending.
Endotach entered into a subsequent agreement that purports to remedy any deficiencies related to standing. It then filed this current complaint. It has indicated its intention to consolidate this later-filed action with the matter currently before the court.
This case has been assigned to Judge Jane E. Magnus-Stinson and Magistrate Judge Denise K. LaRue in the Southern District of Indiana, and assigned Case No. 1:13-cv-01135-JMS-DKL.