Natera fires more shots in ongoing patent battle with CareDx

The patent battle between Natera, a cell-free DNA testing company, and CareDx, a precision medicine company serving transplant patients, continues this week, with Natera now filing two new patent infringement suits against CareDx.

Natera has accused CareDx of infringing two patents covering Natera’s DNA testing technology, according to documents filed last Friday in the US District Court for the District of Delaware. 

The Austin, Texas-based company alleged that CareDx’s Allosure and AlloSeq products infringe patent No. 10,655,180. The patent is related to Natera’s products used to measure DNA in a sample using synthetic pieces of DNA, including amplification products, which are produced using synthetic tools such as primers, according to court documents.  

“CareDx has made extensive use of Natera’s patented technology, including the technology described and claimed in the ’180 patent,” according to the complaint. 

Natera also alleges in a separate case that CareDx’s AlloSure, AlloSeq, KidneyCare, and HeartCare products infringe US Patent No. 11,111,544.

These are the latest shots fired in an ongoing conflict between the two companies. In March, a jury ruled that Natera owed $44.9 million in damages to CareDx. A jury ruled that Natera intentionally misled the transplant community about its Prospera Kidney Transplant Technology by likening it to CareDx’s AlloSure test; CareDx didn’t escape judgement in the ruling, with the jury ruling that CareDx engaged in two accounts of false advertising.

The conflict dates back several years when South San Francisco-based CareDx initiated a lawsuit against Natera in 2019 for false advertising of its product and likening it to CareDx’s product. At their core, both Prospera and AlloSure are blood tests that can assess the risk of rejection of a transplanted kidney.

In a news release Tuesday,  CareDx said that it “believes all the recycled patents asserted against CareDx are invalid and are not infringed.”

A lawyer for Natera did not immediately respond to requests for comment. 

The cases are 1:22-cv-00641-CFC and 1:22-cv-00642-CFC in the District Court of Delaware.