“Our litigation with 3Shape is about 3Shape’s unlawful business practice—patent infringement—and our actions are required to protect our intellectual property rights,” said Joe Hogan, Align Technology president and CEO.
“Align respects the intellectual property rights of others and has consistently asked that they do the same. We have been surprised that 3Shape has argued vehemently that they do not violate our patents, particularly because there are 35 patents involved. It is virtually impossible to unknowingly infringe this number of patents,” said Hogan.
On December 10, 2018, Align filed a Section 337 complaint with the United States International Trade Commission (ITC) alleging that 3Shape violates US trade laws through unfair competition by selling for importation and importing the infringing:
- TRIOS intraoral scanning system
- TRIOS Lab Scanners and TRIOS software
- TRIOS Module software
- Dental System software
- Ortho System
Align’s ITC complaint seeks cease and desist orders and an exclusion order prohibiting the importation of 3Shape’s TRIOS scanning system, lab scanners, Dental System, and Ortho System software products into the United States.
Align also filed two separate complaints in the United States District Court for the District of Delaware on December 11, 2018, alleging patent infringement by 3Shape’s TRIOS intraoral scanning system, Lab Scanners, and Dental and Ortho System software.
The two district court complaints seek monetary damages and injunctive relief against further infringement. One of the Delaware actions includes the patents asserted in the ITC, while one of the suits includes additional patents not asserted in the ITC.
These three new lawsuits against 3Shape are in addition to the two pending Section 337 complaints with the ITC and four pending United States District Court for the District of Delaware complaints filed in November 2017 that are currently pending resolution.
“The continued nature of 3Shape’s infringing activities forced Align’s further enforcement of its deep patent portfolio,” said Roger E. George, Align Technology’s senior vice president and chief legal and regulatory officer.
“Align is a pioneer in the powder-less intraoral scanning system market and in digital dentistry. Our scanners are integral to the technologies that we continue to build into our end-to-end digital workflow solution,” George said.
“We will not allow competitors to take advantage of our significant investments into research and development by continuing to implement product features that infringe on our patents,” George said.
The 10 additional patents asserted by Align against 3Shape are:
- 6,371,761: Flexible Plane for Separating Teeth Models
- 7,077,647: Systems and Methods for Treatment Analysis by Teeth Matching
- 7,156,661: Systems and Methods for Treatment Analysis by Teeth Matching
- 7,357,634: Systems and Methods for Substituting Virtual Dental Appliances
- 8,102,538: Method and Apparatus for Color Imaging a Three-Dimensional Structure
- 8,359,115: Method for Manipulating a Dental Virtual Model, Method for Creating Physical Entities Based on a Dental Virtual Model Thus Manipulated, and Dental Models Thus Created
- 8,805,563: Method for Manipulating a Dental Virtual Model, Method for Creating Physical Entities Based on a Dental Virtual Model Thus Manipulated, and Dental Models Thus Created
- 9,844,420: System and Method for Positioning Three-Dimensional Brackets on Teeth
- 9,848,958: Generating a Dynamic Three-Dimensional Occlusogram
- 9,975,294: Method for Preparing a Physical Plaster Model