Palomar Sues Candela for Patent Infringement
Palomar Medical Technologies Inc., a Burlington, Mass., maker of lasers for hair removal and other cosmetic treatments, filed a lawsuit yesterday in the US District Court for the District of Massachusetts against Candela Corp., based in Wayland, Mass., for patent infringement. Palomar alleges that Candela's light-based hair removal systems, including the GentleLase and GentleYag, infringe US Patent 5,735,844 ("the '844 Patent"). Palomar said it has an exclusive license to the '844 Patent from the General Hospital Corp. of Boston. "The patent claims asserted against Candela in this lawsuit include the same claims that Palomar successfully asserted against Cutera Inc. as well as additional patent claims," Palomar said. Cutera, of Brisbane Calif., also makes lasers for hair removal and skin treatments. Palomar is seeking an injunction against Candela for further infringement and monetary damages and also alleges that Candela's activities constitute willful infringement of the '844 Patent. "Palomar pioneered the optical hair removal field, when, in 1997, it introduced the first high-powered laser hair removal system. Since then, many of the major advances in light-based hair removal have been based on Palomar technology," the company said in a statement. Palomar has an agreement with The Gillette Co. to develop and potentially commercialize a patented home-use, light-based hair removal device for women (Procter & Gamble assumed Gillette's rights and obligations in the development agreement when it acquired Gillette in 2005.) Palomar also has an agreement with Johnson & Johnson Consumer Cos. to develop home-use, light-based devices for treatments involving cellulite, aging skin, and acne; it was also awarded a contract by the US Army to develop a light-based self-treatment device for pseudofolliculitis barbae ("razor bumps").
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