[BiO BB] (no subject)

Sam Darfoor sdarfoor at attbi.com
Sat Feb 15 20:56:24 EST 2003


This may help.

Otherwise you can narrow your search with Google to 'Affymtrix court case'
or something similar. Since Affymtrix won on appeal I imagine that would be
it, unless they went to the House of Lords. Search the Times'
(www.thetimes.co.uk) law case repository too.

Hope this helps


Affymetrix Wins Crucial Patent Case

A British court ruled in April that Oxford Gene Technology controlled a
patent central to Affymetrix's main revenue-producing genomic tool products.
Now Affymetrix has won the appeal. Adding this win to Affymetrix's
first-time profitability, the company is in better shape to deal with
growing competition.

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Affymetrix Targets Genomics

Biochips Ahoy! 

Corning Muscles in on DNA Chips
Discussion Boards
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By Tom Jacobs (TMF Tom9)
November 2, 2000 

Shares of genetic tool company Affymetrix (Nasdaq: AFFX) jumped as much as
33% on near-record volume this morning after a major legal victory. A
British appeals court decided for Affymetrix in a dispute over key patent
licensing covering the company's products. The triumph and a profitable
third quarter have bumped the stock more than 50% from an October 20 low of
$50.38 (though it's still down from a 52-week high of $163.50).

Oxford Versus "Affy"
Affymetrix sells GeneChip technology and products -- DNA-testing biochip
arrays and the reagents, scanners, and software to process and analyze the
genetic information. The patent fight concerned rights to this core
technology, providing Affymetrix with a projected $200 million in revenue
for calendar year 2000.

But in 1999, Edwin Southern, an Oxford professor who founded Oxford Gene
Technologies (OGT) and transferred his patents to it, sued Affymetrix for
infringement. Affymetrix didn't have a Southern license, but competitors
such as Incyte Genomics (Nasdaq: INCY) and Agilent Technologies (NYSE: A)
did, conceding the Southern patents' importance.

Affy end-runs Oxford
Wired Magazine has reported that Affy was about to pay OGT $20 million in
June 1998 in a cross-licensing agreement, but backed off. Instead, Affy
joined a consortium's deal with OGT licensee Beckman Coulter (NYSE: BEC), a
laboratory equipment maker of clinical diagnostics and drug-discovery
systems. If OGT refused to give the consortium a Southern patent license,
Affy would pay Beckman Coulter $10.9 million for its DNA array business and
research -- snaring Beckman's license on sale for 50% off the $20 million
prior offer to OGT. Affy ultimately made the purchase.

A U.K. trial court ruled in April 2000 that the Beckman Coulter deal was a
sham, putting Affy in a jam. Under patent law, the patent holder receives a
right to exclude anyone from using her invention without a license -- there
is no requirement that she use the patented invention or license anyone. So
OGT could have put Affymetrix out of business, though a license was more
likely. Now, the U.K. Appeals Court has ruled that Affymetrix owns a license
as a result of the Beckman Coulter buy.

Who's in the chips?
Affymetrix's riding high for now, but others smack their lips at a market
estimated to be anywhere from $1 billion in five years to $10 billion in 10
years. Big names such as Motorola (NYSE: MOT), Agilent, Corning (NYSE: GLW),
3M (NYSE: MMM), and Hitachi (NYSE: HIT) are moving in on the genetic testing
market with their own biochip array systems, hardware, and software --
apparently unconcerned about Affy's own patents. These companies help
commercialize technologies in partnership with smaller innovative biotechs
such as Rosetta Inpharmatics (Nasdaq: RSTA), Caliper Technologies (Nasdaq:
CALP), Lynx Therapeutics (Nasdaq: LYNX), Hyseq (Nasdaq: HYSQ), and Nanogen
(Nasdaq: NGEN). 

Affy is vigorously defending its patents in U.S. lawsuits with Applied
Biosystems (NYSE: PEB), Hyseq, and Incyte, but the Southern patent victory
may be bigger than any of these. And Affymetrix isn't sitting on its hands,
but deploying its cash to move further into functional genomics. Still, with
so many companies grappling for the profit prize for adding value to raw
human genetic information, it's a tough call to pick the winners in the
volatile genomics tool sector.

Your Turn:
With the Southern patents out of the way, Affymetrix's stock has gone north.
Is there clear sailing ahead? Chime in on the Affymetrix discussion board or
the Biotechnology discussion board!

> From: Caroline Johnston <c.johnston at mail.cryst.bbk.ac.uk>
> Reply-To: bio_bulletin_board at bioinformatics.org
> Date: Sat, 15 Feb 2003 23:17:41 +0000
> To: bio_bulletin_board at bioinformatics.org
> Subject: [BiO BB] (no subject)
> Ed Southern vs Affymetrix 

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