Penn joins lawsuit against former Penn researcher
Penn is suing Thompson and Agios Pharmaceuticals for allegedly violating the patent policy and for failing to disclose his research
February 23, 2012, 11:34 pm · Updated February 27, 2012, 12:33 am·
Two months after the Leonard and Madlyn Abramson Family Cancer Research Center filed a $1 billion lawsuit against former Penn researcher Craig Thompson, Thompson and his company Agios Pharmaceuticals now face a second lawsuit.
On Wednesday, Penn filed a complaint against Thompson, claiming to suffer at least $100 million in damages.
According to the suit, Thompson violated the University’s patent policy and failed to disclose his research, instead providing it to a for-profit corporation. This was “to the detriment of the University,” according to the official complaint.
“I believe the allegations of Penn’s complaint to be without merit, both factually and legally. I am very disappointed that Penn chose to file its lawsuit without making any effort to speak with me or ascertain the true facts before filing a suit that unjustly harms my reputation,” Thompson said in an official statement.
According to the complaint, Thompson was the author of a scientific paper on enzyme IDH1, a focus of Agios’ cancer research. This claim was not included in the original Abramson complaint.
As to whether the Abramson and Penn lawsuits will be joint, “that’s up to the court to decide,” Vice President of University Communications Stephen MacCarthy said.
“Right now they are two separate cases, but we’ll see what happens,” said Allan Arffa, Thompson’s attorney.
However, Abramson’s lawyer David Burger said the University is expected to ask for the two cases to be heard together, according to his letter to the judge.
The dates of the trials have not yet been announced.