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Last updated on April 19, 2014 at 13:20 EDT

Mars Veterinary Asserts Patent Rights on Canine Genetics Identification

June 23, 2011

ROCKVILLE, Md., June 23, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Mars Veterinary, makers of the Wisdom Panel(TM) dog DNA tests has filed a patent infringement suit against BioPet Vet Lab and PetSafe and obtained a preliminary injunction prohibiting BioPet and PetSafe from selling their dog DNA breed identification kits.

Mars has been a leader in the development of dog breed identification services and is the exclusive licensee of a U.S. patent on the use of DNA markers to determine the breed heritage of mixed breed dogs (U.S. Patent 7,729,863). Its Wisdom Panel(TM) canine DNA analyses are based on nearly a decade of extensive research, drawing from the expertise of leading scientists, veterinarians, universities and breed organizations throughout the world. This science has not only yielded the swab-based Wisdom Panel(TM) Insights, the most comprehensive swab product on the market, but also Wisdom Panel(TM) Professional, the only blood-based canine DNA analysis available exclusively through veterinarians. Wisdom Panel(TM) development included the analysis of more than 19 million DNA markers from more than 13,000 dogs, enabling the detection of breed composition of a mixed-breed dog with unprecedented accuracy.

Last year, Mars along with the patent owner Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and Argus Genetics filed the patent infringement suit against BioPet, and then added PetSafe, because of their distribution and sale of dog DNA breed identification kits and services under their own brands. Mars successfully obtained a preliminary injunction in the U.S. District Court in Norfolk in March 2011 against BioPet and PetSafe to stop the sale of their dog DNA test kits and associated services to process the results. Shortly after the preliminary injunction was obtained, BioPet and PetSafe appealed the preliminary injunction and also filed an emergency request to stop the injunction during the appeal process. The appellate court then granted a very short stay of the injunction until it considered whether to stop the injunction during the entire appeal process.

On June 15, the appellate court denied BioPet/PetSafe’s request to stop the injunction during the appeal process. As a result, the injunction against BioPet and PetSafe’s infringing products and services is again in effect.

Mars respects the patent rights of others and expects others will show the same consideration of Mars’ patents. When competitors choose to infringe on the rights of Mars, the Company will seek to protect and enforce its rights and protect its market position.

For more information about Wisdom Panel(TM), visit www.wisdompanel.com.

About Mars Veterinary(TM)

Mars Veterinary is a division of MARS(® )Incorporated, a company known for innovative consumer and pet food brands that are trusted by people around the world. Its mission is to facilitate responsible pet care by enlightening pet owners and communities with valuable insights into their pets as individuals through innovative, science-based discoveries. For nearly a decade, Mars Veterinary has researched and developed state-of-the-art genetic tests for mixed-breed dogs, revolutionizing personalized pet care. By discovering a mixed-breed dog’s ancestry, pet owners and veterinarians can work together to tailor wellness programs that fit the one-of-a-kind needs of a mixed-breed dog. For more information, visit www.wisdompanel.com.

About Mars, Incorporated

In 1911, Frank C. Mars made the first Mars candies in his Tacoma, Washington kitchen and established Mars’ first roots as a confectionery company. In the 1920s, Forrest E. Mars, Sr. joined his father in business and together they launched the MILKY WAY® bar. In 1932, Forrest, Sr. moved to the United Kingdom with a dream of building a business based on the philosophy of a “mutuality of benefits” for all stakeholders – this vision serves as the foundation of the Mars, Incorporated we are today. Based in McLean, Virginia, Mars has net sales of more than $30 billion and six business segments including Petcare, Chocolate, Wrigley, Food, Drinks and Symbioscience. More than 65,000 Associates worldwide are putting our Mars Principles in action every day to make a difference for people and the planet through our performance.

Mars brands include: Chocolate – M&M’S®, SNICKERS®, DOVE®, GALAXY®, MARS®, MILKY WAY® and TWIX®; Petcare – PEDIGREE®, WHISKAS®, SHEBA®, CESAR® and ROYAL CANIN®; Wrigley – ORBIT®, EXTRA®, STARBURST®, DOUBLEMINT® and SKITTLES®; Food – UNCLE BEN’S®, DOLMIO®, EBLY®, MASTERFOODS® and SEEDS OF CHANGE®; Drinks – ALTERRA COFFEE ROASTERS(TM), THE BRIGHT TEA CO.(TM), KLIX® and FLAVIA®; Symbioscience -SERAMIS®, CIRKU(TM) and COCOAVIA(TM).

For more information, please visit www.mars.com.

SOURCE Mars Veterinary


Source: newswire