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Fight or Join Forces?

Originally Published MX January/February 2003

TOPSPIN

By seeking common ground, medical device company executives can avoid patent infringement litigation and advance shared strategic objectives.

Brad Sorenson and Dan Goldberger

In March 2001, QRS Diagnostic LLC (Minneapolis) spotted some unsettling news on the Web site of Dolphin Medical Inc. (Hawthorne, CA):

Brad Sorenson (left) is president and chief operations officer of QRS Diagnostic LLC (Minneapolis), and Dan Goldberger (right) is president of Dolphin Medical Inc. (Hawthorne, CA).

 Dolphin was intending to introduce a pulse oximeter designed in the Compact Flash format. QRS holds two patents on the design of medical devices in computer cards, including Compact Flash cards, and notified Dolphin that its new pulse oximeter could potentially infringe on the QRS patents. Within days, the companies' patent attorneys had exchanged letters staking out each firm's basic position.

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