Among the interesting tidbits to come out of the recently concluded Microsoft-Motorola patent trial is this fact: The presiding juror was Mary-Claire King, a University of Washington professor and a renowned geneticist who played a leading role in the identification of breast cancer genes.
King, who declined to comment on the trial, led the jury that on Wednesday delivered a unanimous verdict in favor of Microsoft. The jury had decided that Motorola had breached its agreements to two standards-setting organizations to license certain of its patents to Microsoft on fair and reasonable terms. It awarded Microsoft about $14.5 million in damages. (See the jury verdict form here.)
King, who is currently a professor in the UW School of Medicine’s departments of medicine and genome sciences, discovered the BRCA1 gene. Mutations in that gene, as well as in the BRCA2 gene, can lead to increased risk of breast and ovarian cancer.
She’s also the subject of an upcoming movie called “Decoding Annie Parker,” in which she is portrayed by actress Helen Hunt. The film screened at the Seattle International Film Festival this summer.
It is unknown if King led the jury’s “theme day” efforts, in which the jury dressed in different themes each day. On Tuesday, the theme was green. On Wednesday, it was sports shirts.