News 28 Oct. 2014

Curtis Wins Dismissal of Patent Dispute Between Danish Drug Discovery Companies

Curtis successfully represented Chemgene Holding ApS, a Danish drug discovery company, and its founder and CEO, Dr. Henrik Pedersen, in a dispute over the ownership and inventorship of a group of U.S. patents and patent applications that was initiated by another Danish drug discovery company, Nuevolution A/S, and the inventor of the patents-at-issue, Dr. Peter Birk Rasmussen.

Curtis won a forum non conveniens dismissal of the complaint, which the plaintiffs filed in the Eastern District of Virginia more than a year and a half after plaintiff Nuevolution asserted identical claims in a parallel proceeding before the Danish Maritime and Commercial High Court. A federal judge in the Eastern District of Virginia rejected the plaintiffs' contention its claim to correct the inventorship of a U.S. patent under 35 U.S.C. § 256 could only be decided by a U.S. court and therefore precluded a forum non conveniens dismissal. Instead, the court agreed with defendants that the resolution of the inventorship and ownership of priority Danish patents in the parallel proceedings in Denmark would ultimately resolve the inventorship and ownership of the related U.S. patents-at-issue and therefore Denmark was the more appropriate and convenient forum.

The Curtis team was led by partner Turner Smith and included associate Kevin Meehan and counsel Eric Stenshoel.