A jury in Austin, TX, awarded biotech firm Ravgen $57 million in damages in its patent infringement lawsuit against Natera.
The jury agreed that Natera’s Panorama prenatal screening test infringes on the Columbia, MD-based Ravgen’s patent rights in cell-free DNA (cfDNA) technology, according to a Ravgen statement.
Ravgen’s lawsuit, which was filed in 2020, alleges that technology used in Natera's Panorama and Vistara noninvasive prenatal genetic tests, Signatera circulating tumor DNA test, and Prospera cfDNA transplant rejection test violated two of Ravgen’s patents.
Natera argued that the patents were invalid; furthermore, the technology used in Natera’s tests differed substantially from that of Ravgen.
The suit is one in series for both companies in the hotly contested cfDNA testing technology arena. In 2022, Ravgen won a $272 million verdict against Labcorp; a judge subsequently increased the damages by $100 million in 2023. Ravgen has also settled suits with Quest and Illumina.
In a statement, Natera noted that the $57 million awarded by the jury was significantly less than the $410 million Ravgen sought and that the jury determined there was no willful infringement by Natera.
Additionally, the company said that it “respectfully disagrees with the jury’s verdict and plans to file an appeal,” and that “the patent at issue has expired.”