Knobbe Martens’ CardiAQ Win Recognized in NLJ Verdicts Hall of Fame

The results obtained in a trade secret misappropriation case (CardiAQ Valve Technologies v. Neovasc Inc.) have landed Knobbe Martens’ partners John Sganga, Christy Lea, Brian Horne, Josh Stowell and Hans Mayer prestigious spots in the National Law Journal’s 2016-2020 Verdicts Hall of Fame. The team successfully represented client CardiAQ in both the trial and appeal.

CardiAQ, then a two-man start-up, hired Canadian medical device company Neovasc to assist in prototyping CardiAQ’s life-saving minimally invasive prosthetic mitral heart valves. CardiAQ sued the company only after learning that Neovasc had secretly developed its own competing product based on CardiAQ’s proprietary designs. A federal jury found that Neovasc breached both its nondisclosure agreement with CardiAQ and its duty of honest performance, and misappropriated trade secrets, ultimately awarding CardiAQ $70 million in damages.

Post-trial, the United States District Court in Boston awarded CardiAQ an additional $21 million in enhanced damages, and granted co-inventorship of the Neovasc transcatheter mitral valve patent to CardiAQ co-founders Arshad Quadri, M.D., and J. Brent Ratz. With interest, the award increased to almost $112 million. After its request for a new trial was denied, Neovasc appealed.

The Knobbe Martens team briefed and argued the appeal, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit upheld the $112 million win for CardiAQ in a unanimous decision.

The cases listed in NLJ’s Verdicts Hall of Fame are the highest-grossing verdicts between 2016 and 2020 as reported to VerdictSearch, with each securing a minimum award of $35 million. You can view the complete listing of the National Law Journal’s Verdicts Hall of Fame here.

About Knobbe Martens

Consistently ranked among the top intellectual property firms in the nation and worldwide, Knobbe Martens dedicates its practice to all aspects of intellectual property and technology law, including patents, trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets. Knobbe Martens handles intellectual property litigation nationwide, including litigation at the district courts, the appellate courts, the PTAB and the ITC. Knobbe Martens has about 300 attorneys and scientists, including over 125 attorneys dedicated to intellectual property litigation. The firm has offices in Orange County, California, Los Angeles, New York, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, D.C., and enjoys an international reputation for excellence. More information about the firm can be found at