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Monday, June 3, 2013

ACTOS LITIGATION UPDATE

The Foulston Law Office is following the latest developments in the Actos trial currently in progress in Los Angeles. According to a Bloomberg News article published on March 6th, a clinical pharmacologist has testified that Takeda Pharmaceutical appeared to care more about product sales than patient safety.  This critical testimony suggests that Takeda knew the risk factors of Actos but failed to warn patients and their doctors.

Actos is a Type 2 diabetes medication that is the subject of thousands of lawsuits alleging that the drug caused bladder cancer. Users of this drug should be aware that there is a substantial amount of evidence indicating that drug may increase their risk of bladder cancer.

The Foulston Law Office offers free legal advice to Actos patients who feel that they were injured by use of this drug.

According to Bloomberg News, clinical pharmacologist, Howard Greenberg, testified  in Los Angeles state court in the case (Cooper v. Takeda Pharmaceuticals America Inc., CGC-12-518535, California Superior Court (Los Angeles). In his testimony, Greenberg said that emails in 2005 revealed that Takeda officials cared more about protecting Actos than protecting patients; the emails discussed whether or not a warning label would be required by US and European regulators over a link to bladder cancer. “There are multiple e-mails from different levels of Takeda management that indicate the product came first,” Greenberg stated. One of the emails he reviewed in preparation for his testimony was written by Takeda executive Kiyoshi Kitazawa, who emphasized how valuable Actos was for the company and noted the implications of what regulators might do in light of research showing that the drug is linked to bladder cancer. “Actos is the most important product for Takeda and therefore we need to manage this issue very carefully and successfully not to cause any damage for this product globally,” Kitazawa wrote.

Plaintiff, Jack Cooper, was diagnosed with bladder cancer after taking Actos for over four years. His lawsuit is one of thousands filed over the drug, and alleges that Takeda knew about the cancer risks but failed to warn the public. Bloomberg News reports that Actos sales peaked at $4.5 billion as of March 2011; this accounted for 27 percent of Takeda’s total revenue at that time.

Actos was approved in 1999 and was once the world’s best-selling Type 2 diabetes drug, notes Bloomberg News. In 2011, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) updated the safety label on Actos to warn that the drug may increase the risk of bladder cancer after one year of use.

A number of Actos lawsuits are pending in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana as part of the multidistrict litigation (MDL) entitled In Re: Actos (Pioglitazone) Products Liability Litigation (MDL No. 6:11-md-2299). Judge Rebecca Doherty is presiding over the litigation.

For more information on this topic, please contact the Foulston Law Office.

 


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