All Claims of a SynQor Patent Are Ruled Invalid

May 12, 2015 by Jeff Shepard

On May 5, 2015, the United States Patent and Trademark Office's Patent Trial and Appeals Board (PTAB) ruled that all claims of U.S. Patent No. 7,727,021 are invalid, thus affirming the Examiner's decision in a reexamination proceeding initiated by Vicor Corporation. SynQor, Inc. has asserted U.S. Patent No. 7,727,021 against Vicor and Cisco Systems, Inc. in litigation currently pending in the U. S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas. The May 5th PTAB decision follows a March 13th decision in which the Federal Circuit, reversing a prior decision of the PTAB, found that prior art invented by Dr. Robert L. Steigerwald anticipated key claims of a related patent, U.S. Patent No. 7,072,190. Citing to the Federal Circuit decision, and giving it substantial weight, the PTAB found that all claims of U.S. Patent No. 7,727,021 are also either anticipated by Steigerwald or obvious.

Commenting on the PTAB decision to invalidate U.S. Patent No. 7,727,021, Dr. Patrizio Vinciarelli, Vicor's Chief Executive Officer, stated, "SynQor's abuse of the patent system and its campaign to prevent competition from superior Vicor bus converters, known not to infringe, has now been dealt a second, decisive blow. On the heels of the Federal Circuit's earlier decision invalidating key claims of the '190 patent, the PTAB new ruling underscores the seminal role of Dr. Steigerwald's pioneering work in anticipating a second SynQor patent, the '021. The two remaining SynQor patents that have been asserted against Vicor -- patents based on the same technical disclosure as the '190 and '021 patents -- are equally bogus, and due to be invalidated."

Vicor has asserted counterclaims against SynQor for the damage caused by SynQor's abusive practices. In its counterclaims, Vicor seeks damages for SynQor's unfair and deceptive trade practices and its tortuous interference with Vicor's customer relationships. Vicor intends to hold SynQor and its agents accountable for the damage they have caused.