Tag Archives: drug lawsuits

Texas Law Firm Investigating Potential For Talc Lawsuits Against Johnson & Johnson

Baron & Budd: “Seemingly Benign Product” Could Lead to Severe Health Complications Including Ovarian Cancer


NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ–A Dallas-based law firm apparently wants to get in on the opportunity to represent women harmed by Johnson & Johnson’s (J&J’s) talcum-based products.

The law firm, Baron & Budd, says it is investigating potential legal action against Hub City-based pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson (J&J) regarding a possible link between its talcum-based products and ovarian cancer, according to a press release issued by the firm on the last day of February.

Talc, a mineral, is contained in J&J products including baby powder.  It is imported from China, according to package labels.

The “national” law firm cites the recent $72 million verdict in Missouri, one that many media outlets have picked-up on.

The family of Jackie Fox will receive $62 million in a punishment award, plus $10 million in compensatory damages, as we reported.  J&J is expected to appeal the decision.

The release mentions that more than 1,000 other suits are pending against the company, but does not mention the 130 additional cases in the Garden State, consolidated in Atlantic County. The first New Jersey case is set to go to trial in July.

“It is extremely disturbing that such seemingly benign products could be linked to a devastating disease,” said Russell Budd, president and managing shareholder of Baron & Budd.

“We will thoroughly investigate this matter and make sure the rights of anyone harmed by talc-based products are protected.”

“Plaintiffs in the cases are claiming that [J&J] failed for decades to warn consumers that talc-based products such as Shower to Shower and baby powder posed a risk for ovarian cancer,” says the release, citing a report from Reuters highlighting the concern that women who use talcum powder on their genitals are at a higher risk for developing the disease.

Reuters also reported that many women traditionally, “spread talcum powder in the genital areas to help eliminate vaginal odors and keep the area comfortable and cool,” reads the release.

An epidemiologist at a Cancer Center in St. Louis is quoted in the Reuters Report as saying that inflammation increases the risk of a woman developing Ovarian Cancer, and it is a known fact that talcum powder increases inflammation, according to the release.

“The Reuters article also reported that a Harvard University doctor who testified in the Missouri trial has published several studies since 1982 linking talc-based products and ovarian cancer. According to the doctor, exposure to talc can increase a woman’s risk of developing the disease by as much as 30 percent,” says the release.

In 2011, J&J responded to consumer pressure concerning two harmful chemicals used to make its famous “No More Tears” baby shampoo: formaldehyde and 1,4-dioxane.

J&J ultimately reformulated the product, moving to its current hypoallergenic version, which is available on store shelves around the world. It looks and smells the same as the original formula. But, according to media reports it still contains very small amounts of formaldehyde.

J&J has said it was very costly to make the change. Now other makers of look-alike, golden-hued baby shampoos, including Wal-Mart Stores Inc., “Equate” label are also paraben, phthalate and quatemium 15 free.

Sourced From –http://newbrunswicktoday.com/article/texas-law-firm-investigating-potential-talc-lawsuits-against-johnson-johnson

Time for J&J to pay up in $124M Risperdal case as SCOTUS deflects final appeal

January 11, 2016 | By

Johnson & Johnson ($JNJ) fell short Monday in its final effort to escape a Risperdal marketing penalty in South Carolina. The U.S. Supreme Court declined to take up J&J’s last appeal in the case, putting the company on the hook for a $124 million penalty.

J&J had cited the Eighth Amendment in arguing against the penalty, saying it qualified as an “excessive fine.” As Reuters notes, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce had backed the drugmaker in seeking Supreme Court review.

J&J’s Janssen unit has been fighting South Carolina’s deceptive trade practices court win since 2011, when a jury ordered the drugmaker to pay $327 million for Risperdal marketing violations. The company succeeded in lowering the judgment twice, first to $136 million and then, last year, to the final $124 million.

The lawsuit centered on promotional materials Janssen used to market the antipsychotic drug. Key to the case was a letter sent to South Carolina physicians, which overstated Risperdal’s benefits compared with other drugs in its class and downplayed side effects, the jury found. The trial court judge ordered Janssen to pay about $4,000 for each of the more than 7,000 letters mailed.

The original $327 million judgment dwarfed other similar rulings in drug-marketing lawsuits, including sizable decisions and settlements in other Risperdal-related litigation, but it fell far short of a $1.2 billion verdict in Arkansas. The Arkansas Supreme Court struck down that judgment in March 2014, and the company later negotiated a settlement of $7.5 million.

The South Carolina decision survived that state’s top court in a ruling last year, in which Justice John Kittredge backed the decision at trial, but lowered the $327 million penalty to $136 million.

In affirming the judgment against the company, Kittredge echoed the trial judge’s “profit-at-all-costs” characterization of Janssen’s marketing efforts. “Janssen’s desire for market share and increased sales knew no bounds, leading to its egregious violation of South Carolina law,” Kittredge wrote in the February 2015 ruling.

Janssen had argued that it did not intentionally deceive doctors with the now-notorious “Risperdal letter” that has featured in several state-court lawsuits. The drugmaker also contended that South Carolina’s attorney general didn’t prove patients were actually harmed by the drug. It was on that point that Kittredge lowered the judgment.

The “Risperdal letter” lawsuits compose only part of the mountain of litigation J&J has fought over the antipsychotic drug. The company agreed to pay $2.2 billion in a marketing settlement with the U.S. Justice Department and a group of states.

And the litigation isn’t over yet. The company now faces more than 1,000 lawsuits over Risperdal’s ability to trigger breast development in boys. J&J lost the first court battle last February, as a Philadelphia jury ordered J&J to pay almost $2.5 million to a young man who developed breasts while using Risperdal. In November, another jury awarded $1.75 million in a similar case.

Read Full Article – http://www.fiercepharma.com/story/time-jj-pay-124m-risperdal-case-scotus-deflects-final-appeal/2016-01-11

Sun Pharma settles US patent litigation with Actavis over skin care drug


The settlement is subject to review by the US Federal Trade Commission and the US department of justice, Sun Pharma said. Photo: Bloomberg

Mumbai: Ranbaxy Pharmaceuticals Inc., a unit of Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd, has settled a patent litigation with Actavis over the generic version of Absorica, a drug used to treat acne.

Ranbaxy, along with its partners, Cipher Pharmaceuticals Inc. and Galephar Pharmaceutical Research, Inc. have entered into a settlement with Actavis that dismisses the lawsuit relating to Actavis’s abbreviated new drug application (ANDA) for a generic version of Absorica (isotretinoin capsules), Sun Pharma said.

Absorica is used to treat severe recalcitrant nodular acne, a skin disease, in patients 12 years of age and older.

As part of the agreement, Ranbaxy, Cipher and Galephar have entered into a non-exclusive license agreement with Actavis under which Actavis may start selling its generic version of Absorica in the US on 27 December 2020 (nine months before the expiration of the patents in September 2021) or earlier under certain circumstances, it said.

In 2014, Ranbaxy had introduced Absorica 25 mg and 35 mg capsules in the US after the product was licensed from Cipher Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

The settlement is subject to review by the US Federal Trade Commission and the US department of justice, Sun Pharma said.

Read Full Article – http://www.livemint.com/Companies/FzFiRFnBqLKVKWbhCBYnfM/Sun-Pharma-settles-patent-litigation-with-Actavis.html

Zofran Lawsuits Consolidated, Victory for Plaintiffs

. By Jane Mundy

Boston, MABecause so many Zofran birth defects lawsuits have been filed nationwide against GlaxoSmithKline, the manufacturer, a multidistrict litigation (MDL) has been ordered for all pending and future lawsuits – good news for plaintiffs. And attorneys say that the decision to send Zofran lawsuits to Boston is a “victory” for plaintiffs.

The order to consolidate was issued by the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation on October 13, 2015. At least 60 plaintiffs nationwide have one thing in common: they are all part of MDL No. 2657, centralized in the District of Massachusetts before US District Judge F. Dennis Saylor.

Zofran lawsuits that were filed in federal court have been consolidated because they have almost the same allegations:

• GSK fraudulently misrepresented Zofran to prescribing physicians about the safety of its anti-nausea drug for pregnant women.

• GSK knew and concealed the drug’s alleged association with serious birth defects, and failed to provide doctors and patients with information regarding this risk.

• GSK marketed the drug to pregnant women off-label, i.e., without FDA approval. (The FDA only approved Zofran to treat post-operative surgery patients, as well as those undergoing certain cancer treatments.)

While each lawsuit in an MDL remains individual, common questions will be raised, i.e., does Zofran cause birth defects and if so, which kinds? Plaintiffs have filed claims alleging Zofran has caused a number of congenital birth defects, including cleft palate, spina bifida and heart defects. A few claims have also been filed alleging hypospadias and even a missing kidney.

Why Boston?

The Panel’s choice is a victory for the families who have sued GSK, according to attorney Michael Monheit, writing in The Legal Examiner (October 15). Monheit said that GSK first proposed a MDL in Federal Court in Pennsylvania, which is close to the drug company’s headquarters. But plaintiffs argued that “few if any Zofran lawsuits had been filed in Pennsylvania” and Boston was a top choice, particularly because Zofran was first linked to a birth defect (cleft palate) by researchers at Boston University’s Slone Epidemiology Center. And five lawsuits have already been filed in Massachusetts, four of them already assigned to Judge Saylor.

Full Article Read Here – http://www.lawyersandsettlements.com/articles/zofran-birth-defects/glaxosmithkline-gsk-us-district-judge-f-dennis-20980.html#.ViTB12SrQy4