10x Genomics lawsuit says startup copied gene-analysis technology

REUTERS/Thomas Peter
  • Parse Biosciences allegedly copied 10x tech 'wholesale'
  • Companies compete in single-cell genomics field

(Reuters) - Gene-sequencing company 10x Genomics Inc sued startup Parse Biosciences Inc in Delaware federal court Wednesday, alleging its gene-analysis kits infringe patents related to 10x's Chromium platform.

Pleasanton, California-based 10x said in the lawsuit that its competitor has "made clear that it intends nothing less than to copy 10x's complete lineup of single-cell products wholesale."

A Parse spokesperson on Thursday said the company will fight the lawsuit and "will not let competition prevent us from making single-cell genomics more accessible to the broader community." The Seattle-based company raised more than $41.5 million in startup funding in February.

A 10x spokesperson said Thursday that the company has invested more than $1 billion in developing its technologies and will "vigorously defend our products and broad intellectual property portfolio."

Single-cell genomics allows scientists to study genes on a cell-by-cell basis, at a more individualized level than traditional technology. 10x said in the lawsuit that its products have led to breakthrough discoveries related to diseases like COVID-19, cystic fibrosis, and types of cancer function.

10x accused Parse's products of copying its patented technology for tagging molecules with barcodes for tracking. 10x licenses some of the patents from Stanford University, which is also a party in the case.

A representative for Stanford did not immediately respond to a request for comment Thursday.

10x settled a multi-front genomics patent fight with rival Bio-Rad Laboratories Inc last year. It also sued biotech company NanoString Technologies last year for allegedly infringing its patents, in a case that is still ongoing.

The case is 10x Genomics Inc v. Parse Biosciences Inc, U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware, No. 1:22-cv-01117.

For 10x: Nicholas Groombridge of Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison

For Parse: not available

(NOTE: This story has been updated with comment from Parse and 10x.)

Read more:

Bio-Rad, 10x Genomics settle genomics patent war

10x Genomics sues NanoString over RNA-analysis patents

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Blake Brittain reports on intellectual property law, including patents, trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets. Reach him at blake.brittain@thomsonreuters.com