Auris Health loses motion to move Intuitive Surgical patent suit from Del. to Cali. - MassDevice

Johnson & Johnson's Auris, Intuitive Surgical

Newly JNJ) ISRG) from Delaware to California.

In the case, filed last August, Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Intuitive Surgical claims that Auris’ Monarch robotic surgical platform infringes on eight of Intuitive’s patents.

Auris Health filed a motion looking to transfer the case from the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware to the Northern District of California, where both companies are headquartered and where Auris claims its Monarch platform was “primarily designed and developed,” according to court documents.

Auris claims that Intuitive’s decision to file in Delaware, which court documents claim should carry significant weight as Intuitive is the plaintiff in the case, was “based on the parties’ state of incorporation” and is “not positive of transfer inquiry,” according to court documents.

In court documents, Auris goes on to claim that having to defend the case in Delaware would “divert financial and human resources from continued development of [its] Monarch Platform,” and that it will have a “significant impact on the engineers.” The company also claims it “pales in size and financial means” as compared with Intuitive.

Judge Maryellen Noreika considered a total of twelve factors derived from the Jumara v. State Farm Ins. Co. case, dubbed Jumara factors, to analyze whether the case should be transferred. A total of seven of those factors acted as neutral, while two weighed against transfer and three in favor – but, due Intuitive’s choice of the forum being treated as a “paramount consideration,” found that Auris failed to meet its “heavy burden of showing that the Jumara factors weigh strongly in favor of transfer.”

Last month, J&J’s Auris released interim results from an independent feasibility study designed to assess the company’s Monarch robotic bronchoscopy technology.

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