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Case of the Day: Akebia Therapeutics v. Fibrogen

The case of the day is Akebia Therapeutics, Inc. v. Fibrogen, Inc. (9th Cir. 2015). Fibrogen, a San Francisco biotech company, owns European and Japanese patents on the use of certain chemical compounds to treat anemia. Akeiba, a competitor, brought opposition proceedings in the European Patent Office and the Japanese Patent Office, asserting that the patents are invalid. Akeiba brought an application under § 1782 seeking leave to serve subpoenas for documents and testimony on Fibrogen. The judge granted the application ex parte, and Fibrogen appealed.
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Case of the Day: Folex Golf v. O-TA Precision Industries

The case of the day is Folex Golf Industries, Inc. v. O-TA Precision Industries Co. (9th Cir. 2015). Folex broght an action against O-TA in the Cenral District of California. O-TA argued that a Chinese default judgment against Folex, in an action against Folex brought by the Luoyang Ship Material Research Institute, would have collateral estoppel effect in California and would bar Folex’s California action. The district court agreed, recognized the Chinese judgment, and granted O-TA summary judgment. Folex appealed.
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Case of the Day: Astronics Advanced Electronic Systems v. Lufthansa

The case of the day is Astronics Advanced Electronic Systems Corp. v. Lufthansa Technik AG (9th Cir. 2014). AES sought discovery from Lufthansa in the Western District of Washington. It was particularly interested in obtaining a license agreement between Lufthansa and an unnamed third party. The discovery was in aid of a litigation pending in Mannheim, Germany between AES and Lufthansa. However, AES had previously sought discovery of that document, which is physically located in Germany, from the German court itself, and that court had denied the request on the grounds that the license agreement was irrelevant. The District Court denied the request, and in an easy and clearly correct decision, the Ninth Circuit affirmed, holding that in the circumstances, the District Court had not abused its discretion. AES’s protestation that Lufthansa itself had successfully brought a § 1782 application in connection with the same German proceeding was to no avail—each application gets judged on its own merits.