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Fenwal Responds to New Lawsuit From Haemonetics; Reiterates Commitment to Blood Centers
Date:12/15/2009

LAKE ZURICH, Ill., Dec. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Fenwal Inc., a global leader focused on improving blood collection, safety and availability for patient care, reiterated its commitment to provide blood centers with Alyx® system supplies needed to collect lifesaving blood products, despite a new lawsuit filed yesterday against Fenwal by Haemonetics Corporation ( HAE). The Fenwal® Alyx® system, introduced in 2003, is an advanced medical instrument used worldwide to collect two units of red cells from a single donor in about 30 minutes.

Fenwal will ask the court to expedite the legal process to reduce the impact of delays on customers and the blood supply. The new lawsuit filed against Fenwal follows an earlier motion made by Fenwal before the same judge seeking a decision of non-infringement on its modified Alyx® separation chamber. In filing a second lawsuit now, Haemonetics has chosen to prolong the litigation.

Fenwal will vigorously defend itself in this new litigation and has taken several actions to assure uninterrupted product supply to blood centers. As previously announced, the company has modified the separation chamber in Alyx® kits to avoid infringing the disputed patent claim and to comply with the earlier court's judgment and injunction. Fenwal has openly informed Haemonetics of its redesign and introduction plans, including providing Haemonetics with drawings last April and production samples last September. In developing the modified Alyx® separation chamber, Fenwal followed strict design control procedures in accordance with all U.S. Food and Drug Administration regulations and guidance.

"We are committed to working with customers and assuring their operations are not disrupted as we continue to work through the steps required to resolve this," said Dean Gregory, Fenwal senior vice president of Commercial Operations. "We have said from the beginning that the claims against
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SOURCE Fenwal Inc.
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