MORRISVILLE…Etrials Worldwide Inc., which sells software for the collection and review of clinical trial data, says it plans to vigorously defend its rights to its electronic diary (EPD) technology.

The company says a lawsuit filed by Massachusetts-based PHT Corp., a competitor, makes “vague and unsupported charges of patent infringement of a patent the plaintiff licensed from a third party rather than developed.”

PHP filed the suit in the U.S. District Court in Deleware July 8, but etrials said in a statement Thursday that it was not contacted or notified by PHT of the suit and has not had an opportunity to respond. PHP filed similar claims again two other competitors, Invivodata and CRF Inc. earlier this year.

Responding in a statement, etrials, which merged with MiniDoc in 2003, claimed it was the first company to market electroinic diaries and has existing and pending patents involving the use of handheld devices in the collection of patient data.

Thus far, PHP has not responded to Local Tech Wire’s request for comment.