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Natera owes Ravgen $57 million in genetic-testing case, Texas jury says

Post Time:2024-01-17 Source:Blake Brittain Author:Reuters Views:

Jan 16 (Reuters) - Genetic-testing company Natera (NTRA.O), opens new tab must pay Maryland biotech company Ravgen $57 million in damages for infringing one of Ravgen's patents, a jury in Austin, Texas, said on Tuesday.

The jury agreed with Ravgen that Austin-based Natera's Panorama prenatal screening tests violate Ravgen's patent rights in cell-free DNA testing technology, according to a Ravgen spokesperson.

Natera said in a statement that the verdict will have "no impact on the company's ability to continue serving its customers" and that the award was "significantly less than the $410 million Ravgen was seeking."

Ravgen attorney Kerri-Ann Limbeek told Reuters that the company was pleased with the verdict and that the jury recognized that its technology is "foundational" to non-invasive prenatal testing.

Ravgen has sued several diagnostics companies for patent infringement. Its patents relate to diagnostic tests that analyze free-floating DNA taken from a patient's bloodstream, technology that the Columbia, Maryland-based company said it pioneered.

Ravgen in 2022 won a $272 million Texas verdict against Labcorp (LH.N), opens new tab, which a judge increased by $100 million last year. It later settled related lawsuits against Quest Diagnostics (DGX.N), opens new tab and Illumina (ILMN.O), opens new tab.

Related Ravgen lawsuits are still pending in Delaware federal court against Biora Therapeutics (BIOR.O), opens new tab and Roche's (ROG.S), opens new tab Ariosa Diagnostics.

Ravgen sued Natera for patent infringement in 2020.

A Natera filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission last year said that Panorama was the market leader in non-invasive prenatal testing and made up the majority of the company's revenue along with its carrier-screening test Horizon.

Natera told the court that its tests work differently from Ravgen's patented technology and argued that Ravgen's patent is invalid.

The case is Ravgen Inc v. Natera Inc, U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas, No. 1:20-cv-00692.