Summary Judgment of Noninfringement Appropriate Where No One Configuration of the Accused Product Literally Met All Limitations and Prosecution History Estoppel Precluded Reliance on Equivalents

EMD Millipore Corp. v. Allpure Techs., Inc., 768 F.3d 1196 (Fed. Cir. Sept. 29, 2014) (PROST, O'Malley, Hughes) (D. Mass.: Woodlock) (1 of 5 stars)

Federal Circuit affirms summary judgment of noninfringement. The patent claimed a device for introducing or withdrawing a fluid sample that was construed to require "at least one transfer member that can be removed from the magazine part of the device,” where the transfer member included a seal. The patentee argued there was literal infringement because disassembly of the accused product could qualify as the claimed removal. The Federal Circuit disagreed because the transfer member no longer had a seal after disassembly, as claimed. Moreover, prosecution history estoppel precluded a finding of infringement by equivalents. The patentee had made a narrowing amendment to the "seal" limitation and argued that none of the cited prior art "disclose a seal formed like the present one." Slip op. at 12. So the presumption of estoppel applied, and the patentee presented nothing to rebut it.