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Jury orders Illumina to pay $96M in patent lawsuit

NEW YORK (AP) -- Genetic analysis instrument maker Illumina Inc. said Friday that a federal jury ruled against it in a patent infringement trial, and ordered the San Diego company to pay $96 million in damages to Syntrix Biosystems.

The jury found that Illumina's BeadChip products infringed on a patent belonging to Syntrix. Illumina said the judge dismissed claims that the infringement was willful.

The company said it disagrees with the verdict. Illumina plans to ask the judge to vacate the finding and rule that the BeadChip array doesn't infringe on the patent.

BeadChips are silicon wafers the size of a microscope slide. They are covered in tiny silica beads, and each bead is covered with DNA molecules that capture gene sequences. The company's BeadArray technology allows it to run tests on those gene sequences, performing a broad analysis of genetic variation and biological function.

Shares of Illumina lost 23 cents to $52.51 in morning trading.