Edwards Lifesciences has announced that a federal jury found that Edwards' US Cribier transcatheter heart valve patent is valid and that Medtronic CoreValve willfully infringes it.

Edwards will move to enforce this verdict and intends to seek a permanent injunction. The jury also awarded Edwards $394m in damages, and the willfulness finding allows Edwards to seek increased damages of up to three times that amount, in addition to attorneys’ fees.

Edwards transcatheter heart valves corporate vice president Larry L. Wood noted as the long-time leader and innovator in heart valves, Edwards invests in promising early technologies.

"As a result, Edwards holds a number of important patents in transcatheter valve technology, and we intend to continue to defend this intellectual property when it is used by others without permission. We are proud of our long-standing relationship with Prof. Cribier and other key innovators in transcatheter heart valves, and we continue to work with them today as we develop new transcatheter therapies for patients suffering from heart valve disease," Wood added.

The patent involved in this suit is part of the Cribier family of patents and expires in December 2017. This case was tried in the US District Court for the District of Delaware and is directed at the manufacture and sale of the CoreValve ReValving System in the US, as well as the worldwide sales of valves assembled in Medtronic’s Tijuana, Mexico facility using U.S. made components.

In 2010, a federal jury found that Medtronic CoreValve willfully infringes on another Edwards patent, the US Andersen transcatheter heart valve patent, and awarded damages to Edwards.

That finding was upheld on appeal and an initial payment of $84m was made by Medtronic to Edwards in 2013. A decision on Edwards’ request to enjoin Medtronic’s entrance into the US market and additional damages is still pending. Because some of the sales have been found to infringe both the Andersen and Cribier patents, a portion of the damages awarded in the Cribier case could be reduced.