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Judge Stark finds preambles limiting

In a series of related actions, Chief Judge Leonard P. Stark issued a claim construction opinion in which he concluded that the relevant claims’ preambles were limiting. E.g., Idenix Pharmaceuticals LLC, et al. v. Gilead Sciences, Inc., et al, C.A. No. 13-1987-LPS (D. Del. Nov. 16, 2016).

The Court concluded that the preamble section “method for [the] treatment of Hepatitis C virus infection” that appeared in both patents were claim limitations, as argued by Plaintiffs. Id. at 8-10. The Court concluded that the preambles were “essential to understand[ing] limitations or terms in the claim body” because “a full understanding of the ‘effective amount’ terms [in the claims] depends on what the relevant compounds must be effective for,i.e., the treatment of Hepatitis C. Id. at 9-10 (alterations and emphasis in original) (citations omitted). The Court also adopted Plaintiffs’ proposal that this limitation be given its plain and ordinary meaning. Id. at 10.

E.g., Idenix Pharmaceuticals LLC, et al. v. Gilead Sciences, Inc., et al, C.A. No. 13-1987-LPS (D. Del. Nov. 16, 2016)

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