Align Technology Inc issued a statement in response to opinion issued on November 22 by the United States International Trade Commission (ITC), which reviewed an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) Initial Determination in his investigation of 3Shape’s infringement of Align’s patents. Like the administrative law judge, the Commission Opinion determined that 3Shape infringes four claims from three Align patents, but declined to find a violation of Section 337 because, based on the judge’s adopted claim construction, it found that Align’s own products do not practice the claims (a requirement unique to the ITC) and that certain claims are invalid.
“While we are pleased that both the ALJ and now the full Commission have found that 3Shape infringes multiple claims from multiple Align patents, we are disappointed that the Commission decision results in no exclusion order for 3Shape’s infringement. We are considering all appropriate options, including a possible appeal to the Federal Circuit,” said Julie Coletti, senior vice president, chief legal and regulatory officer. “The Commission decision confirms our belief that 3Shape infringes Align’s core patents regarding color intraoral scanning technology. As always, we remain committed to protecting our significant investment in innovation.”
According to a press release from Align, the parallel federal district court case filed by Align in Delaware, alleging infringement of the same patents but where the requirement that Align practice the patents does not apply, will remain stayed pending any related appeals.
Five other patent infringement cases in Delaware federal district court alleging infringement of different Align patents not included in this ITC investigation are not stayed and are in active litigation, with the first trials scheduled for April and June 2020.