Digest of Enzo Biochem Inc. v. Applera Corp., No. 2014-1321 (Fed. Cir. Mar. 16, 2015) (precedential). On appeal from D. Conn. Before Prost, Newman and Linn.
Procedural Posture: Applera appealed the district court’s claim construction, and in the alternative appealed the district court’s denial of Applera’s post-trial motion that the asserted claims were not enabled and lacked written description. CAFC reversed the district court’s claim construction, vacated the judgment of infringement, and remanded.
- Claim Construction: The district court erred in construing the claim to cover direct detection of the claimed compound having an “A” group (an adenine base component of a nucleotide). The claim language and the specification as a whole indicated that “A” in combination with other chemicals, not “A” itself, formed a signaling moiety. Therefore, CAFC construed the claim to cover only indirect detection, not direct detection.
- Claim Construction: The majority erred in holding that the district court’s claim construction was incorrect. The term “at least one component” did not mean two or more components as a matter of grammar. Also, the district court’s factual findings that an example in the specification, the dependent claims and an expert’s testimony supported the claim construction covering direct detection were entitled to deference.