SOURCE: Gruber Hurst Johansen Hail LLP

March 28, 2011 12:58 ET

Snoring Center Competitor Drops Series of False Marketing Statements

Sereno Center's Actions Follow Fraud, Deceptive Advertising Lawsuit

DALLAS, TX--(Marketwire - March 28, 2011) - Attorneys for The Snoring Center®, the nationally renowned Dallas-based clinic for the treatment of snoring and sleep apnea, are noting that the Sereno Center for Snoring Solutions in San Francisco is no longer claiming to be the world's largest provider of the Pillar® Procedure or the first practice of its kind. Sereno also has altered its website and advertisements to remove claims of being the world's first exclusive provider of clinical treatments for snoring, sleep apnea and related disorders.

The Snoring Center filed a federal lawsuit against Sereno in November 2010 based on allegations that the company's owners fraudulently obtained The Snoring Center's proprietary information and made false advertising statements to promote its clinical practice.

"By addressing its blatant marketing falsehoods, we're hopeful that the Sereno Center is contemplating additional positive steps to resolve this litigation," says attorney Michael Hurst of Gruber Hurst Johansen Hail, lead counsel for The Snoring Center. "While these changes are welcome, this lawsuit will proceed as we continue to protect our client's legal interests and assess the damages incurred against The Snoring Center."

The statement regarding the Pillar Procedure, which was found in earlier versions of the Sereno Center website and other advertising, has been disputed by Medtronic, the Minneapolis-based company that owns and supplies the materials used in the FDA-approved technique. The minimally invasive procedure involves the placement of small woven inserts into the patient's soft palate to reduce snoring and sleep apnea symptoms. Medtronic has previously and consistently identified The Snoring Center as the highest volume user of the Pillar Procedure.

The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas, includes claims that the Sereno Center's partners posed as potential investors in The Snoring Center's plans for expansion beyond Texas. Instead, they allegedly obtained and used The Snoring Center's confidential financial and clinical data and advertising strategies to open the Sereno Center in downtown San Francisco in 2010.

The lawsuit, Craig Schwimmer, M.D., et al. v. Presidio Industries, LLC, et al., seeks unspecified financial damages and a portion of the defendants' profits, as well as the return of all confidential information.

Gruber Hurst Johansen Hail was formed in 2006 and provides legal counsel on complex business litigation, including securities, financial services, employment, intellectual property, technology, products liability and other commercial cases. Clients include leading companies -- large and small -- and individuals in the fields of private equity, real estate, manufacturing, professional services, energy, and retail.

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