TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 27, 2016

Microbix alleges VIRUSMAX patent infringement in Europe by Novartis

Microbix Biosystems, Inc., has filed a new patent lawsuit against Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics, alleging the company infringed on its VIRUSMAX patent in Europe.

The VIRUSMAX technology, first patented in 2004 amid growing concern regarding limited global vaccine production capabilities, is used to boost virus yields in egg-based vaccine manufacturing.

"Microbix discovered the presence of large quantities of flu virus in eggs that was previously unrecognized by the industry," Microbix President and CEO Vaughn Embro-Pantalony said. "VIRUSMAX is the innovative manufacturing process developed by Microbix for the vaccine industry based on that discovery. Following the successful defense of our European patent in January 2014, we are taking this next step to enforce our intellectual property rights in Europe."

The Canadian biotechnology company defended the VIRUSMAX patent against Swiss drug manufacturer Novartis in Europe earlier this year, when the European Patent Office ruled in favor of Microbix, saying the technology is a non-obvious invention. Novartis has since appealed the decision.

Microbix filed its first complaints against Novartis in the Eastern District of Texas in January, alleging patent infringement of the VIRUSMAX technology in the U.S.

According to Microbix, an independent study of VIRUSMAX published in 2007 showed the technology helped to boost flu virus production in eggs, and the company said the technology allows for a more substantial vaccine yield over conventional manufacturing processes.