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Third Wave files patent suits against Digene, Chiron and Bayer

Madison, Wis. -- Third Wave Technologies Inc. has filed suit against three companies, seeking rulings regarding its right to sell two products, the company announced on Tuesday. The suits were filed in federal court in Madison.

The company last Friday filed suit against Digene Corp., seeking a court ruling supporting Third Wave's right to sell its human papilloma virus (HPV) products.

On Tuesday, Third Wave filed suit against Chiron Corp., Bayer Corp., and Bayer HealthCare LLC asking for a similar ruling about its right to sell its hepatitis C virus products. Chiron is the owner of several patents relating to HCV; Bayer is its licensee for clinical diagnostics.

"Third Wave wants to clear any remaining ambiguities about the company's freedom to operate in valuable markets like those for HCV and HPV," said John Puisis, president and chief executive officer of Third Wave. "Third Wave's Invader chemistry is both unique and well-protected by distinct intellectual property rights. We compete in the marketplace by delivering innovative, high-quality products based on that chemistry to our customers. We have been diligent, taking great care and making significant investments to achieve our freedom to market HCV and HPV products. We work hard to ensure that we respect the intellectual property rights of others. The value of the Invader chemistry and our pipeline is substantial and we see these actions as a logical progression to protect and expand our market presence."

Third Wave's Invader chemistry is used to analyze nucleic acids, the foundation of genetic material and infectious agents. The Invader chemistry and the methods of using it are protected by a suite of 45 issued patents; more than 100 additional Third Wave patents are pending.

¥ See previous WTN coverage of Third Wave legal action:
-- Third Wave sued by one firm; gets injunction against another
-- Stratagene to appeal verdict won by Third Wave

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