Little ol’ KFx Medical challenges Stryker next over patent infringement




San Diego, California-based KFx Medical, LLC, holder of patents used in knotless double row rotator cuff repair, is alleging that Stryker’s product infringed on its intellectual property.

In 2015, the company successfully defended these patents against Arthrex, Inc. Arthrex and KFx had fought over the Knotless Double Row Fixation patents all the way to the appellate court. Arthrex tried to take the case to the U.S. Supreme Court, but the Court turned down the review so Arthrex paid $35 million to KFx.

Following that victory, Tate Scott, KFx’s president and CEO, said, “Small companies can indeed win and defend their intellectual property from much, much larger companies. The Supreme Court’s ruling today has confirmed KFx patents are valid and infringed by Arthrex. We will continue to require other infringers to respect our intellectual property.”

In March 2018, KFx said it and Wright Medical agreed to dismiss patent litigation over the rotator cuff repair patents and signed a licensing deal.

The company has also signed licensing deals with Zimmer Biomet, Smith & Nephew, Johnson & Johnson’s Mitek subsidiary and ConMed giving those companies the right to promote the use of products and techniques for knotless double row rotator cuff repair as claimed in U.S. Patent number 7,585,311 (‘311 patent) and related patents and applications for the life of those patents.

In 2011, the company notes that an anonymous party filed a request that the U.S. Patent Office re-examine the KFx Medical patent. The U.S. Patent Office rejected all arguments made by the anonymous party and upheld the KFx Medical patent.

On August 17, 2018, the company announced it was now turning its intellectual property lawyers loose to defend its ‘531 against alleged infringement by Stryker Corporation.

KFx Medical was founded in 2003 to develop products for tissue fixation in a variety of orthopedic surgical procedures performed on the shoulder, knee, foot and ankle. The company says its AppianFx line of implants reattach tissue to and in bone in shoulder, knee, foot and ankle procedures. Product offerings include those that directly place and secure tissue into bone both with and without the use of sutures.

The company is privately held. Investors include Alloy Ventures, Charter Life Sciences, Arboretum Ventures, Montreux Equity Partners, and MB Venture Partners.