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Mahurkar v. C.R. Bard, Inc.

United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
79 F.3d 1572 (1996)


Facts

Dr. Sakharam D. Mahurkar (plaintiff) filed a patent application on October 24, 1983 for a double-lumen catheter for use in dialysis patients. Mahurkar granted C.R. Bard, Inc., Davol Inc., and Bard Access Systems, Inc. (collectively, Bard) (defendant) a license under the patent. Bard violated the license, and Mahurkar filed a patent infringement suit against Bard. Bard contended that the patent was invalid under 35 U.S.C. § 102(a) because, in July 1983, Cook, Inc. published a national catalog disclosing a double-lumen catheter. At trial, Mahurkar established that he began work on the catheter in 1979, and, in the ensuing years, made the catheters in his home. During this time, Mahurkar conducted tests on the catheters and worked to identify companies that could develop catheter tubing with material suitable for human use. Bard moved for judgment as a matter of law (JMOL) that the Cook catalog anticipated Mahurkar’s patent. Mahurkar also moved for JMOL. The district court granted Mahurkar’s motion, concluding that no reasonable jury could find that the Cook catalog constituted prior art barring Mahurkar’s patent. Bard appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Rader, J.)

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