Robert Gunther is a partner in the firm's Litigation/Controversy Department, and a member of the Intellectual Property Litigation Practice Group. He is also a member of WilmerHale's Management Committee.
Mr. Gunther, a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, has 30 years of experience as a trial lawyer representing life sciences pharmaceutical and technology clients in intellectual property litigation at both the trial and appellate levels. He has consistently been selected by Chambers USA, Managing IP magazine, LMG Life Sciences and IAM as a leading lawyer in the area of patent litigation.
Mr. Gunther has successfully litigated patent, trade secret and other intellectual property cases before numerous federal district courts and arbitration tribunals. He has also argued appeals before the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, litigated patent disputes before the US International Trade Commission and litigated inter partes review proceedings before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board of the US Patent and Trademark Office. He has handled cases involving an array of technologies, including biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, petrochemical processes, computer hardware and software, telecommunications and networking, video game and graphic display hardware and software, optical discs and consumer products, among others. His intellectual property clients have included Abbott Laboratories, Affymetrix, Cephalon, Chugai Pharmaceutical, Eastman Kodak Company, Genentech, Mentor Graphics,Nintendo, Playtex Products, QinetiQ, Roche Molecular Systems, Sumitomo Electric and WebMD.
Prior to joining WilmerHale, Mr. Gunther was vice chair of the Global Litigation Department of Latham & Watkins, LLP, where he also previously served as co-chair of the Global Intellectual Property, Media and Technology Group.
Professional Activities / Community Service
- Member, American Intellectual Property Law Association
- Member, Board of Directors, Brooklyn Defender Services
- Member, Board of Directors, St. John's University School of Law Alumni Association
- Eastman Kodak Company v. Asia Optical Co., Inc., 12-3206-cv (2d Cir. 2013) (argued): affirming judgment of over $33 million in favor of Kodak for breach of patent license agreement.
- C-COR, Inc. (formerly nCUBE) v. SeaChange, Int’l, 436 F.3d 1317 (Fed. Cir. 2006) (argued): affirming district court judgment that SeaChange willfully infringed C-COR's patent on a flexible video on demand server architecture. Also handled the trial of this case.
- SeaChange, Int’l v. C-COR, Inc. (formerly nCUBE), 413 F.3d 1361 (Fed. Cir. 2005) (argued): reversing district court judgment of infringement of SeaChange’s patent by C-COR and finding no infringement as a matter of law.
- Playtex Products, Inc. v. Proctor & Gamble Co., 400 F.3d 901 (Fed. Cir. 2005) (argued): reversing and vacating summary judgment of non-infringement of Playtex’s patent on a popular consumer product.
- Wang Labs, Inc. v. America Online, Inc., 197 F.3d 1377 (Fed. Cir. 1999) (argued): affirming summary judgment of non-infringement by AOL of patent that, according to Wang, represented the invention of the Internet browser.
- Achieved a significant victory on behalf of our clients, multiple medical device and diagnostics companies, when the District of Delaware granted summary judgment invalidating the key patent asserted against our clients. The judge ultimately entered a final judgment as to that patent, stayed the remainder of the claims and closed the cases.
- American Process Inc., et al. v. GranBio Investimentos S.A. (N.D.Ga.): Achieved a favorable outcome for GranBio, a Brazilian biotechnology and clean energy company, when the Northern District of Georgia granted our motion to compel arbitration, denied plaintiffs’ motion for preliminary injunction and stayed the case pending arbitration.
- Eastman Kodak Corporation v. Ricoh (S.D.N.Y.): Counel for Kodak in this case involving breach of patent license agreement. Following trial, the jury returned a verdict in favor of Kodak, leading to a judgment of over $75 million.
- Abbott Laboratories v. Centocor (D. Mass.): Counsel for Abbott in this case asserting infringement of two Abbott patents relating to antibody technology.
- Apotex v. Cephalon (E.D. Pa.): Counsel for Cephalon in this ANDA litigation asserting patent infringement claims against Apotex’s proposed generic version of Provigil.®
- Contour Design, Inc. v. Chance Mold, Ltd. (D.N.H.): Following successful jury trial, obtained permanent injunction preventing defendant from making and selling ergonomic mouse products incorporating Contour’s proprietary design information, and award of damages and attorney’s fees in favor of Contour.
- Polymer Technology Systems v. Roche (S.D. Ind.): Counsel for Roche in this declaratory judgment case alleging non-infringement and invalidity of a Roche patent relating to diabetes blood testing meters. Obtained complete dismissal of case in favor of German DIS arbitration initiated by Roche against PTS.
- Counsel for Respondent in multi-patent case in U.S.I.T.C. involving digital camera technology. Case settled favorably following hearing in October, 2009.
- In re Hardware Emulation Systems (U.S.I.T.C.): Counsel for Mentor Graphics. Obtained advisory opinion that Mentor’s remote access to hardware emulation devices located outside the US did not violate a prior ITC exclusion order.
- Roche Diagnostics v. Enzo Biochem; Affymetrix v. Enzo Biochem (S.D.N.Y): Counsel for Roche and Affymetrix in declaratory judgment actions seeking determinations that Enzo patents relating to nucleic acid labeling reagents are not infringed and invalid. Summary judgment motions are pending following a favorable claim construction ruling.
- Qiagen v. Roche (ICDR Arbitration): Counsel for Roche in this international arbitration involving claims of breach of patent cross-license relating to HPV. Following trial, Tribunal ruled in favor of Roche on all issues and awarded attorney’s fees. Award confirmed in S.D.N.Y.
- Counsel for Petitioner in ad hoc Swiss arbitrations relating to misappropriation of trade secrets relating to chemical intermediates.
Inter Partes Review
- Ariosa Diagnostics, Inc., v. Illumina, Inc., IPR2104-01093: Counsel to Petitioner, Ariosa in this IPR challenging the validity of a patent relating to multiplexed nucleic acid reactions.
- Roche Molecular Systems, Inc. V. Illumina, Inc., IPR2015-01091: Counsel to Petitioner, Roche Molecular Systems in this IPR challenging patent validity.
Leading Lawyer for Intellectual Property
Recognized as an IP Star
General Patent Litigator of the Year: New York
LMG Life Sciences Awards Shortlist
- Elected a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers in 2014
- Named a leader in the intellectual property: patent field in the 2015-2018 editions of Chambers Global: World's Leading Lawyers for Business
- Recognized as a leader in intellectual property law in the 2010-2018 editions of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, with a source cited as saying he "has the ability to connect with clients, opponents, judges and jury members and therefore is very effective"
- Selected as a 2013-2018 IP Star by Managing IP, a guidebook that identifies leading IP lawyers in the United States
- Named a 2013-2017 leading practitioner in patent law by IAM Patent 1000 – The World's Leading Patent Practitioners and also listed as a leading patent litigator in the 2011 edition of IAM Patent Litigation 250
- Named a Life Sciences Star for outstanding intellectual property litigation work in the 2012-2017 editions of LMG Life Sciences and named to its 2017 awards shortlist for General Patent Litigator of the Year: New York
- Named to IAM Life Sciences 250 – The World's Leading Life Sciences Patent Litigators 2010
- Named to the The Legal 500 United States for his exceptional intellectual property and healthcare: life sciences practices
- Chosen as a "New York Super Lawyer" for intellectual property litigation in 2006-2012 and 2014-2017
- Received the 2015 Alumni Award from St. John's University Law Review
Insights & News
JD, St. John’s University School of Law, 1984cum laude Associate Editor, St. John's Law Review
BA, St. John’s University, 1981summa cum laude