Acumed LLC recently sued Skeletal Dynamics LLC in the United States District Court for the District of Oregon.  Acumed’s complaint alleges that Skeletal Dynamics’s REDUCT Headless Compression Screw infringes one of Acumed’s patents.  The patent at issue, U.S. Patent No.6,030,162 (the ‘162 Patent), titled “Axial Tension Screw,” issued on February 29, 2000.  The ‘162 Patent contains 78 claims, 6 of which are independent.  In its complaint, Acumed did not identify which claims it asserts Skeletal Dynamics infringes; rather, it merely alleges that “Skeletal Dynamics has infringed and is infringing the ‘162 patent by making, using, selling, offering to sell, and/or importing the Skeletal Dynamics REDUCT Headless Compression Screws.”

he ‘162 Patent’s abstract states that the patent relates to: “A screw having a root and threads formed on the root.  The screw is configured to generate and/or maintain axial compression between threads formed in leading and trailing sections of the screw either by virtue of pitch differential in the threads or the way in which the screw is installed.”  Figure 1 of the ‘162 Patent is shown to the right.

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A screenshot from Skeletal Dynamics’s REDUCT YouTube video is shown to the left.  The video was published on September 3, 2015, shortly after Acumed filed suit, and states in its description that the REDUCT Headless Compression Screw is “[t]he first headless compression screw that allows for controlled compression using a proprietary “clutch” that is incorporated into the screw design.”

According to its website, Acumed is headquartered in Hillsboro, Oregon and develops orthopedic implants and surgical devices.  Miami, Florida-based Skeletal Dynamics describes itself as being focused on designing innovative solutions that have not been addressed by other manufacturers.