Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Kingfisher Media, Tawnsaura End IP Suit over Dietary Supplement

Case Filed: Aug 28, 2012

Case Closed: Feb 07, 2014

Court: California Central District Court

Judge: S. James Otero

Case Summary:
Tawnsaura filed a patent infringement complaint against Kingfisher Media, a privately held health and wellness nutraceutical company. Tawnsaura is a non-practicing entity registered in Reno, Nevada with a business objective of patent licensing. At the heart of the litigation are 2 patents and they primarily relate to medicinal use of L-citrulline with/without other ingredients to act as a nutritional product that can be used to enhance physical performance.

The patents involved are US5874471 and US6028107 entitled ’Orthomolecular medical use of L-citrulline for vasoprotection, relaxative smooth muscle tone and cell protection’.  The patents were originally issued on Feb 23, 1999 and Feb 22, 2000 to inventor William Howard Waugh and set to expire[i] by Feb 27, 2017. The patents are currently assigned[ii] to Tawnsaura (source: MaxVal’s Assignment Database). After the patent was assigned to Tawnsaura, they began filing suits alleging infringement of the two patents concerning uses for L-citrulline.

The complaint alleged that the label and/or advertisements for defendant's product High G and High T state that  the products contain the ingredient "L-Citrulline and L-8 Citrulline Malate 1: 1" (respectively) and are "designed to boost the body's output of muscle development”. As per the complaint, defendant literally infringed the patents-in-suit by manufacturing and commercializing nutritional supplements embodying the patented invention and will continue to do so unless enjoined by this Court.

The Court, having considered the parties’ joint stipulation for dismissal ordered that all claims, counterclaims and defenses in this action dismissed with prejudice and the parties to bear their own costs, expenses and attorneys’ fees.

See 8:12-cv-01393 for more details. To get alerts on cases filed/closed, subscribe to our Litigation Alerts.

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[i] Expected expiration date. Patent Term Estimator is a free web-based tool that automatically calculates patent terms and expiration dates for U.S. utility patents
[ii] MaxVal offers Patent Assignment Alert service where subscribers receive email alerts when assignments relating to target applications, patents or entities of interest are recorded

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