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Fenwal Statement Regarding Patent Litigation

Company plans appeal and uninterrupted supply for customers

LAKE ZURICH, Ill., June 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Fenwal Inc., a global leader focused on improving blood collection, safety and availability for patient care, said it will appeal the decision by a Boston court in a patent lawsuit brought by Haemonetics Corporation in 2005. Fenwal believes it has strong grounds for a successful appeal.

In conjunction with this litigation, Judge Nathaniel M. Gorton of the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts decided on Monday, June 1, 2009, that beginning December 1, 2010 (approximately 18 months from now), Fenwal will be enjoined from selling current ALYX(R) disposable kits that contain an infringing component. The order, which also specifies royalties, applies only to these disposable kits and not to the ALYX(R) system itself, nor to any future ALYX(R) products that do not contain the infringing component.

Fenwal will appeal the final judgment when entered. To assure continued supply for customers, Fenwal also will modify the component found to infringe. The company plans to introduce the modified kit, which is currently in development, before the end of 2009, well in advance of the injunction date. This kit will be fully compatible with the existing ALYX(R) system. No changes will be required to the ALYX(R) system itself. Fenwal expects no procedural changes will be required, nor new validation will be recommended for customers.

Fenwal is taking these actions to assure blood centers are able to maintain an adequate blood supply for patients through uninterrupted access to Fenwal's blood-separation technology. Blood centers around the world rely on the ALYX(R) system to collect red cells needed by patients who require blood transfusions.

"We are committed to working closely with customers and assuring their operations are not disrupted as we continue to work through the next steps in resolving this litigation," said Dean Gregory, Fenwal senior vice president of Commercial Operations. "We have believed from the beginning that the claims against Fenwal have no merit and we will defend our position on behalf of our customers and employees. We also are continuing to develop new innovations for the ALYX(R) system that further improve the donor experience and help blood centers fulfill their mission with greater safety, quality and productivity."

Fenwal developed the ALYX(R) system independent of the Haemonetics patent. Haemonetics, which purchased the patent from a third-party inventor, has never incorporated the technology into any commercial product.

About Fenwal

Fenwal Inc. is a global medical technology company focused on improving blood collection, separation, safety and availability for patient care. Fenwal became an independent company in 2007, but its roots go back to 1949 with the founding of Fenwal Laboratories. Fenwal developed the first flexible, disposable container for blood collection, eliminating complications associated with glass containers and allowing blood to be separated into therapeutic components. Today, the company's products and advanced collection and separation technologies are used throughout the world to help ensure a safe and available supply of lifesaving blood and blood products. Fenwal Inc. is based in Lake Zurich, Illinois. For more information, please visit

SOURCE Fenwal Inc.
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