Comprehensive economic analysis finds no need to halt sales of device at center of patent dispute
Edwards Lifesciences thwartedacompetitor’s bid for asignificanttemporary restraining orderand preliminary injunctionagainstitsinnovativePASCAL heart deviceafterIntensity and attorneys at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind & Garrison LLPpresentedacomprehensive analysisrefutingargumentsforhalting sales of the product.
Abbott soughtaTROand preliminary injunctionin federal court in Delawareamida global patent disputeover devices used to treat mitral regurgitation, where the leaflets of the mitral valvedo notclose tightlyandallowblood to backfill into the heart.Abbott claimed PASCALviolated several of its patents and was harming sales of itscompetingMitraClip.Abbott sought injunctive relief and economic damages.
Toevaluatethe threatened TROand preliminary injunction, IntensityeconomistDr. Ryan Sullivan preparedmultipleexpert reports for courts in theUnited Statesand Ireland,and provided live court testimony to examinethe economicanalysis underlyingAbbott’s claim it would suffer irreparable harmand thatthe public interest and the balance of equities betweenweigh in favor ofAbbott.
To assess the claim of irreparable harm,Dr. Sullivandeterminednot only thetypesof damage Abbott might suffer but whether it could be quantified and compensable. He alsoevaluatedwhether an injunction wouldaddressAbbott’s claimed harmsand the extentof theeconomic relationship between the alleged patent infringement andthe claimed harms.“Themultifaceted economics issues combined with the importance of the case to both parties and patients made this an engaging project to apply our rigorous approach,“Dr.Sullivan said.“I am very gratified that our work was a substantial basis for the court’s ruling.”
The public interest was an important consideration, since the dispute involved devices used to treat a common and dangerous heart condition. Intensity conducted market research to determine if PASCAL benefitted patients and whether removing it from the market wouldcause unnecessary harm. Intensity also weighed the relative hardships Abbott and Edwards would face if the court granted the injunction.
Intensity’seconomic analysis included an in-depth examination of products in the structural heart device marketplace, market definition, competition, pricing dynamics andexistinglicensing agreements. Intensity also mapped out product substitution patterns at the customer level to accurately quantify Abbott’s claimoflost profits.
After considering Intensity’s analysis and the legal arguments of Edwards’ attorneys, U.S. District JudgeMaryellenNoreikadenied Abbott’s motions for a TRO and a nationwide preliminary injunction. On July 13, Abbott and Edwards announced they had reached a settlement of all disputes involving the mitral regurgitation device patents. Thatagreement ended parallel litigation in Ireland, whereIntensity and Dr. Sullivan wereprepared to presenttheiranalysis again.
Intensity is a professional services firm that generates powerful research, analysis, and expertise to solve the most complex challenges in the marketplace and courtroom, especially in the areas of economics, finance, and statistics. Using world-class academic training and industry expertise, Intensity professionals conduct thorough research and analysis, develop independent conclusions, and articulate these conclusions in ways that help decision-makers — from corporate executives to judges and juries — make informed decisions. It has built a reputation for unmatched quality, reliability, and responsiveness. The company’s clients include Fortune 500 companies, such as Microsoft, IBM, Novartis, MasterCard, and Adobe.
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