By Buck Daniel
May 1, 2014 – The judge managing the diabetes drug MDL has filed several orders shaping the next steps in the litigation. On Oct. 15, 2013, Judge Lloyd D. George filed an order scheduling a hearing on transferring several new cases to drugs Januvia, Byetta and Victoza pancreatic cancer MDL. This includes hearings to determine if several pending lawsuits will be transferred to the MDL. A second order was issued on Oct. 21, 2013. This order consisted of a transfer of eight individual lawsuits to the existing Januvia cancer MDL. Over 56 individual Januvia lawsuits have joined the MDL so far. The MDL is formally titled In Re: Incretin-Based Therapies Products Liabilities Litigation, MDL No. 2452, in the United States District Court for the District of California. The United States Judicial Panel for on Multidistrict Litigation is presiding over the transfers and managing certain other aspects of the case.
Januvia and related drugs work by interfering with the DPP-4 enzyme. While this can help control blood sugar, this enzyme is also involved in the suppression of tumor growth. So interfering with this enzyme may promote the growth and spread of cancer cells. Recently, this hypothetical risk has been supported by peer-reviewed studies, which indicate a link between the diabetes drugs and an increased risk of developing pancreatic cancer.
By Buck Daniel
April 30, 2014 – Since our last update, there has been a great deal of activity in the Actos litigation. As of the end of March 2014, there were over 5,000 Actos cases filed in the MDL and Illinois State Court and another 1,000 still expected in the months ahead. That aside, I am happy to report that on April 7, 2014, a jury in Louisiana returned a big Plaintiff’s verdict against the named defendants to punish their wrongful conduct and actions. Although the Court will lower the punitive damage award to a much smaller number and the defendants will appeal the case, this is a terrific result and outcome. Hopefully, it will put the defendants on notice of what Actos has done to thousands of families like yours and steer them in the direction of accepting responsibility for the actions.
More on the trial: Following 34 days of trial, a Louisiana jury ordered Japanese drug maker Takeda Pharmaceutical Company and drug maker Eli Lilly & Co. to pay compensatory and punitive damages after finding the companies’ diabetes drug Actos caused Terrance Allen to develop bladder cancer. Mr. Allen used Actos for over 5 years prior to his development of bladder cancer and was a non-smoker his entire life. The punitive damage award likely stems from evidence that Takeda lost or destroyed critical documents from as many as 46 employees and sales representatives. The missing files belonged to high-ranking Takeda employees who were heavily involved in the development, sales, marketing, and promotion of Actos. Other missing files belonged to rank-and-file sales representatives whose day-to-day work involved marketing and distributing Actos.
There is another Actos trial going on right now in Nevada involving two women, Ms. Bertha Triana, 80, and Ms. Delores Cipriano, 81, who claim Actos caused them to develop bladder cancer as well. Additionally, other Actos trials are being scheduled through the remainder of 2014 and 2015. As these trials unfold, we will keep you posted on the results.
Posted by Buck Daniel
November 7, 2012 – A consolidated complaint was filed by 12 plaintiffs, who claim to have been diagnosed with bladder cancer as a result of using Actos, on August 14, 2012. Specifically, the court documents allege that the defendants, Takeda Pharmaceuticals, should have known about the risks of developing bladder cancer after using Actos. The filing further alleges that the defendants were specifically aware of these dangers prior to seeking approval to market Actos from the FDA in 1999. Finally, the court documents allege that Takeda continued to conceal this knowledge and willfully put the lives of the plaintiffs, as well as the general population, at risk by way of warnings on the product that were vague and inadequate.