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Leonard P. Stark: Claim Construction in Cholesterol-Reduction Patent Dispute

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A recent claim-construction report and recommendation by Magistrate Judge Leonard P. Stark approached the dilemma of construing numerous terms in a creative way. Faced with over fifty disputed claim terms, the Court posed six questions that, when answered, would resolve the meaning of the claims:

(1) “Do the Abbott patents exclude an ‘internal hydrophobic component’ “;
(2) “Whether the ‘treatment-lining’ terms should be numerically defined”;
(3) “Whether ‘sustained release’ can be defined in relation to ‘immediate release'”;
(4) “Whether ‘significant increase’ should be numerically defined”;
(5) “Whether ‘intermediate release’ can be defined in relation to both ‘sustained release’ and ‘intermediate release’ “;
(6) “Whether ‘about’ should be numerically defined.”

By grouping the disputed terms together in this way, the Court was able to resolve the parties’ disputes without wading into the whole universe of claim terms.

Abbott Labs. v. Lupin Ltd., C.A. No. 09-152-JJF-LPS (D. Del. June 18, 2010) (Stark, M.J.).

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