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Gevo (GEVO) Wins Appeals Court Ruling In Butamax Patent Infringement Litigation

 November 19, 2012 10:52 AM

(By Balachander) Gevo Inc. (NASDAQ: GEVO), an advanced biofuels company, said a ruling from an appeals court strengthened its position in the patent infringement dispute with Butamax Advanced Biofuels LLC (Butamax) involving yeast engineered to produce isobutanol.

"Gevo Inc. raised a substantial question of validity concerning the asserted patent (the ‘889 Patent), a question which Butamax has failed to show lacks substantial merit," the appeals court stated.

The appeals court upheld a decision by the United States District Court for the District of Delaware, which denied a motion for a preliminary injunction sought by Butamax.

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Judge Sue Robinson of the United States District Court stated that "plaintiff (Butamax) does not hold a valid patent, nor would the defendant (Gevo) infringe if it did."

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has rejected Butamax's patents and declared them unpatentable.

Gevo said it now has two judicial decisions supporting its position that "Butamax's ‘889 patent is invalid and that we don't infringe upon it."

"If Butamax persists in moving this case to trial, we are even more confident that Gevo will prevail, given the decisions in our favor by the trial court, the Appeals Court, and the USPTO," Gevo added.

Butamax is a joint venture between BP Plc (BP) and DuPont (DD), was formed to develop and commercialize biobutanol as a next generation renewable biofuel for the transport market.

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On Monday, Gevo shares added 2.07 percent to trade at $1.48.

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11/19/2012 11:50:27 AM
Issue for Gevo by Lawrence Ebert
The CAFC affirmed D. Delaware's denial of the PI, but included the following text in the decision (written by Chief Judge Rader): However, this court’s affirmance should not be read to endorse the trial court’s very questionable construction of the claim term “acetohydroxy acid isomeroreductase” – that is “as an enzyme that is solely NADPH dependent.” The trial court should reconsider its construction when it holds a Markman hearing.
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