Last year, Ancestry.com filed a trademark infringement law suit against DNA Diagnostics Center, Inc. (“DDC”) in the Ohio Southern District Court in Cincinnati. The lawsuit alleged that DDC’s use of the “AncestrybyDNA” brand and trademark was an infringement of Ancestry.com’s trademark of “AncestryDNA” and was causing confusion amongst consumers. Some people were purchasing DNA services from DDC without realizing they were not dealing with Ancestry.com.
It appears that Ancestry.com has lost the case.
DNA Diagnostics Center, Inc. (“DDC”) has issued a press release stating:
FAIRFIELD, Ohio, May 3, 2016 — DNA Diagnostics Center, Inc. (“DDC”) – one of the world’s largest DNA testing companies – announced that the Federal District Court for the Southern District of Ohio found its DNA tests sold under the “AncestrybyDNA” brand and trademark were in the market years prior to the introduction of Ancestry.com’s “AncestryDNA” branded DNA test. As such, the Honorable Judge Sandra Beckwith concluded that DDC may continue using the word “ancestry” and its AncestrybyDNA trademark to sell its DNA tests.
The Federal Court also determined that: (1) DDC and its predecessor have been using the AncestrybyDNA brand for ancestry DNA testing since 2002 and obtained a trademark registration in 2008; and (2) there was no confusion in the marketplace between DDC and Ancestry.com until 2012, when Ancestry.com entered the DNA test space with its new AncestryDNA trademark. Judge Beckwith concluded there was “confusion caused by [Ancestry.com’s] introduction of its junior ANCESTRYDNA mark to consumers rather than by DDC’s use of its mark ANCESTRYBYDNA or by DDC’s use of descriptive terms such as ‘ANCESTRY DNA Testing’ and ‘ANCESTRY DNA Test.'”
As a result of the Court’s ruling, DDC will continue to use the “AncestrybyDNA” brand to market its proprietary ancestry DNA tests, as it has done for years.
About DNA Diagnostics Center (DDC)
DDC, founded over 20 years ago, is one of the world’s largest DNA testing companies with offices in Fairfield, Ohio (United States) and London, England (United Kingdom). DDC offers DNA testing for paternity and family relationships, forensics, genetic traits of animals, cell line authentication, and ancestry.
Since acquiring DNA Print Genomics in 2009, DDC has performed the testing and marketing of its ancestry products, worldwide. DDC will launch its newest ancestry DNA test in 2016, utilizing an advanced autosomal-based large SNP array and a proprietary algorithm to provide unmatched specificity of one’s ancestral origins.
DDC is accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB), The Ministry of Justice, the College of American Pathologists (CAP), and the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendment (CLIA). DDC is also accredited by ACLASS to meet the international standards of ISO 17025 and the American Society of Crime Laboratory Directors / Laboratory Accreditation Board-International (ASCLD/LAB). For more information, please visit www.dnacenter.com.