BURLINGTON, Mass., Aug. 18 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Palomar Medical Technologies, Inc. (Nasdaq: PMTI), a leading researcher and developer of light-based systems for cosmetic treatments, announced today that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office ("the Patent Office") has confirmed the validity of all claims in the re-examination of U.S. Patent No. 5,595,568 ("the '568 patent"), entitled "Permanent Hair Removal Using Optical Pulses."
Rejecting Candela's and another company's arguments to the contrary, the U.S. Patent Office confirmed that claims 1-10, 13, 14, 18, and 19 of the '568 patent are valid and patentable. As part of the re-examination process, Palomar added 2 new claims (23-24) to the '568 patent, and the Patent Office also confirmed these new claims as valid and patentable. Claims 11, 12, 15, 16, 17, 20, 21 and 22 were not under re-examination. Consequently, all claims of the '568 patent are valid.
Palomar is suing Syneron for willful infringement of the '568 patent and both Candela and Syneron for willful infringement of the U.S. Patent No. 5,735,844 ("the '844 patent") in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts. On June 15, 2009, Palomar announced the successful conclusion of the re-examination of the '844 patent. On November 17, 2008, the lawsuit against Candela was stayed by the Court pending the outcome of the re-examinations of both the '568 and '844 patents. In Palomar's patent infringement lawsuit against Syneron, the parties mutually agreed to a stay of that suit pending the re-examinations of both the '568 and '844 patents. Palomar has requested that the court re-start its lawsuit against Candela and will now also request the court re-start its lawsuit against Syneron.
This light-based hair removal patent family has already been licensed to ten competitors and is also the subject of a patent infringement lawsuit against Tria Beauty, Inc.
Chief Executive Officer Joseph P. Caruso commented, "We are again very pleased with this result from the U.S. Patent Office. This patent family is strong as is evidenced by the number of our current licensees; as well as the fact that companies are now coming to us for licenses prior to entering the hair removal market."
Mr. Caruso continued, "As I have said in the past, Palomar exclusively licensed the '844 and '568 patents from Massachusetts General Hospital in 1995. Palomar was the first company to receive FDA clearance and bring a high powered light-based hair removal system to market. Palomar was later the first company to receive FDA clearance for permanent hair reduction and the first company to receive over the counter clearance from the FDA for a hair removal device. After establishing light-based hair removal as a viable treatment option, many competitors began to use our technology. Several properly took licenses while others opted not to at their own risk. Unauthorized taking of technology is what the patent system is designed to prevent. We intend to continue our aggressive patent enforcement strategy both to protect our own investment in research and market development as well as the investment of our competitor licensees."
Patricia Davis, Palomar's General Counsel and a registered patent attorney, commented, "Again we are pleased but not surprised by the U.S. Patent Office's position which supports our belief in the strength of both the '568 patent and the patent family as a whole. If Palomar prevails at trial, Candela and Syneron may be ordered to pay significant amounts in damages for past sales and ordered to stop selling infringing products. Palomar also alleges that Candela's and Syneron's activities constitute willful infringement. If Palomar prevails on such claims, Candela and Syneron could be forced to pay up to triple the amount of the original damages assessment and Palomar's legal fees."
About Palomar Medical Technologies Inc.: Palomar is a leading researcher and developer of light-based systems for cosmetic treatments. Palomar pioneered the optical hair removal field, when, in 1997, it introduced the first high-powered laser hair removal system. Since then, many of the major advances in light-based hair removal have been based on Palomar technology. In December 2006, Palomar became the first company to receive a 510(k) over-the-counter (OTC) clearance from the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for a new, patented, home use, light-based hair removal device. In June 2009, Palomar became the first company to receive a 510(k) OTC clearance from the FDA for a new, patented home use, laser device for the treatment of periorbital wrinkles. OTC clearance allows products to be marketed and sold directly to consumers without a prescription. There are now millions of light-based cosmetic procedures performed around the world every year in physician offices, clinics, spas and salons. Palomar is testing many new and exciting applications to further advance hair removal, skin rejuvenation and other cosmetic applications. Palomar is focused on developing proprietary light-based technology for introduction to the mass markets. Palomar has granted The Procter & Gamble Company a non-exclusive license to certain patents, technology and FDA documents related to the home-use, light-based hair removal field for women. In addition, Palomar has an exclusive development and license agreement with Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies to develop and potentially commercialize home-use, light-based devices for reducing or reshaping body fat including cellulite, reducing the appearance of skin aging, and reducing or preventing acne.
For more information on Palomar and its products, visit Palomar's website at www.palomarmedical.com. To continue receiving the most up-to-date information and latest news on Palomar as it happens, sign up to receive automatic e-mail alerts by going to the Investor Relations' section of the website.
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are based on the Company's current expectations, plans, intentions, beliefs or predictions. These forward-looking statements are neither promises nor guarantees, but involve risk and uncertainties that may individually or mutually impact the matters herein, and cause actual results, events and performance to differ materially from such forward-looking statements. These risk factors include, but are not limited to, results of future operations, technological difficulties in developing or introducing new products, the results of future research, lack of product demand and market acceptance for current and future products, the effect of economic conditions, challenges in managing joint ventures and research with third parties and government contracts, the impact of competitive products and pricing, governmental regulations with respect to medical devices, including whether FDA clearance will be obtained for future products and additional applications, the results of litigation, including patent infringement lawsuits, difficulties in collecting royalties, potential infringement of third-party intellectual property rights, factors affecting the Company's future income and resulting ability to utilize its NOLs, and/or other factors, which are detailed from time to time in the Company's SEC reports, including the report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2008 and the Company's quarterly reports on Form 10-Q. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof. The Company undertakes no obligation to release publicly the result of any revisions to these forward-looking statements that may be made to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.
Contacts: Kayla Castle Investor Relations Manager Palomar Medical Technologies, Inc. 781-993-2411 firstname.lastname@example.org
|SOURCE Palomar Medical Technologies, Inc.|
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