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Issued: March 1988 Prosecuted by: Ben D. Tobor of Houston’s Tobor Goldstein and Healey Litigated by: Gregory Diskant and William Cavanaugh, Jr., of New York’s Patterson, Belknap, Webb & Tyler There’s a bit of irony in Johnson & Johnson’s handling of the market in cardiac stents — those little wire-cage devices that keep arteries propped open after angioplasties. J&J’s domination of the market went into cardiac arrest almost immediately after two companies introduced competing stent products. J&J’s 90 percent market share dwindled to 10 percent in the first 45 days of competition. For resuscitation, J&J turned to their lawyers. In 1997, lead counsel Gregory Diskant and William Cavanaugh, Jr., of New York’s Patterson, Belknap, Webb & Tyler took on stent competitors Medtronics AVE Inc., Boston Scientific Corp., and Guidant, Inc. The Boston Scientific and Medtronics cases went to trial back-to-back last year in Delaware federal court. Diskant compares the litigations to “consecutive marathons.” We call them screaming victories. The Boston Scientific jury came back on November 21, and awarded J&J a whopping $324.4 million in damages. Just three weeks later, the Medtronics jury awarded J&J $271.1 million. Defense attorneys in both cases have said they will appeal. If J&J’s verdicts are upheld, Boston Scientific and Medtronics will need to seek licensing deals with J&J — or get out of the stent business. (Guidant has settled for an undisclosed amount.)Since the verdicts, J&J’s market share has been steadily climbing. Analysts say that J&J has rebounded to about 20 percent of the volatile $1.5 billion market. And observers expect J& J to regain its status as a major market player.

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