As we mentioned above, lawyers in the Mass Torts Section at Beasley Allen continue to evaluate and file claims involving bladder cancer during or following usage of Actos, Actoplus Met, Actoplus Met XR, and/or Duetact. Manufactured by Takeda Pharmaceuticals, Actos is in a class of insulin-sensitizing drugs known as thiazolidinediones and was approved by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) to treat Type 2 diabetes in July 1999. In June 2011, the FDA warned that Actos usage for more than one year may be associated with an increased risk of bladder cancer. Takeda made more than $16 billion on Actos, prior to it going generic in late 2012.
To date, more than 8,000 cases are pending in both federal and state courts against Takeda and its co-marketer of Actos, Eli Lily, alleging that Actos caused bladder cancer injuries. Recently, a West Virginia state court determined that Takeda had intentionally destroyed key documents related to its knowledge that Actos increases the risk of developing bladder cancer and awarded the Plaintiff compensatory damages of $155,000.00.
Previously, a Philadelphia state court ordered Takeda Pharmaceuticals to pay more than $2 million for failing to warn doctors that Actos could cause bladder cancer. The Philadelphia jury found that Takeda failed to warn that Actos increases the risk of developing bladder cancer. The Philadelphia jury heard testimony that was presented during the federal trial in Louisiana regarding Takeda’s destruction of key employees’ documents. While we are disappointed that Takeda was not ordered to pay punitive damages for this egregious conduct, we are encouraged by the verdict.
In October, the $9 billion verdict previously entered earlier this year in federal court case in Louisiana was reduced to $37 million. According to the judge, the reduction brings the award “to the maximum amount a jury could have properly awarded” under the law. The federal judge denied Takeda’s request for a new trial.
As you may recall, in 2013 juries in state court cases in California and Maryland ordered Takeda to pay more than $8 million in damages, but those verdicts were overturned by the judges for technical reasons. Juries in three trials, two in Las Vegas and one in Chicago, have returned verdicts in favor of Takeda. More trials are scheduled throughout 2015.
If you have any questions regarding the litigation, or if you would like for us to review your potential claim, please contact Andy Birchfield or Roger Smith, lawyers in the Mass Torts Section at 800-898-2034 or by email at Andy.Birchfield@beasleyallen.com or Roger.Smith@beasleyallen.com.
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