On October 3, 2018, the New Jersey Supreme Court made its long-awaited decision in the Accutane Multicounty Litigation. Developed by the New Jersey-based pharmaceutical giant Hoffman-La Roche, Accutane is a prescription acne treatment that has been found to be linked to inflammatory bowel disease.

Numerous plaintiffs filed lawsuits in New Jersey, essentially claiming that, based upon the drug maker’s own internal documents, Accutane’s warnings should have been stronger in stating that Accutane has been found to directly cause inflammatory bowel disease. A Multicounty Litigation was formed, which encompassed 532 plaintiffs – of which 18 were New Jersey residents, and 514 were residents of 44 different jurisdictions other than New Jersey.

Continue Reading The New Jersey Supreme Court’s Latest Decision Affecting Pharmaceutical Multicounty Litigation

In May 2018, Judge M. Casey Rogers, who is overseeing the federal Abilify litigation, entered an Order to establish the “initial parameters by which the global mediation of this matter will proceed.” The parties were given 120 days (from May 1, 2018 until September 1, 2018) to finalize the framework for a mediation process. A Special Master has been appointed to assist the parties with the process.

Meanwhile, in tandem with the potential mediation process, the parties are also moving forward with the selection of a second round of bellwether cases to work up for trial in the federal litigation.

Accordingly, the Court will randomly select 100 cases by July 6, 2018. From there, the pool will be further narrowed to 40 individuals, claiming either Bipolar Disorder or Major Depressive Disorder/Depression as the diagnosis leading to their Abilify prescription and “Gambling” as an obsessive/compulsive/impulsive behavior they claim was caused by Abilify. Once the pool is reduced to 40 cases, the parties will engage in a discovery process to further reduce the pool to 10 cases by the end of 2018.

The Court is currently leaning towards the possibility of consolidating some of the cases for trial.

Visit our site for more information about the Abilify lawsuit and settlement options.

It has been alleged that Gilead Sciences, an HIV drugmaker, purposefully delayed the introduction of safer, life-saving medications in order to increase profits.

In 2001, Gilead received approval for the sale of HIV drugs containing the compound, tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF). Unfortunately, TDF medications have been linked to severe kidney and bone injuries. However, numerous lawsuits, including one filed by the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, have alleged that Gilead had, in fact, developed a much safer HIV treatment compound, tenofovir alafemanide fumarate (TAF).

Continue Reading Gilead Facing Multiple Claims of Purposefully Delaying Safer HIV Drug Alternatives

This month, the New Jersey Supreme Court designated the Abilify litigation in New Jersey a multicounty litigation (MCL). The Notice and Order can be found here: https://www.njcourts.gov/notices/2018/n180510b.pdf.

Though Bergen County Superior Court Judge James DeLuca had been overseeing all of the Abilify cases filed in New Jersey, those cases will now be transferred to Atlantic County Superior Court for centralized management by Judge Nelson C. Johnson. Accordingly, all future Abilify complaints filed in New Jersey Superior Court, no matter where they might be venued, shall be filed in Atlantic County. While Judge Johnson will oversee management and trial issues for the New Jersey Abilify MCL cases, he may, in his discretion, return the cases to the original county of venue for disposition.

The MCL will be litigated in parallel with the multidistrict litigation (MDL) that has been pending in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida, before Judge M. Casey Rodgers, since October 2016. Plaintiffs are cautiously optimistic about the MCL designation and the latest developments in the MDL, including Defendants recently settling the three cases set for initial trials this summer in the MDL, for undisclosed amounts (such representative cases that are worked up for trial are known as “bellwether” cases).

Visit our site for more information about the Abilify lawsuit and settlement options.

On February 12th, a man from Arkansas filed a lawsuit against Eli Lily and Co., the manufacturers and distributors of the drug taladalafil, also known commercially as Cialis, alleging that the drug was the cause of his melanoma and that he could have avoided the risk of skin cancer if the drug had proper warnings.

In the lawsuit, filed in federal court in California, the plaintiff alleged that Eli Lily and Co. omitted mentioning or warning that data showed a link between an increased risk of developing melanoma with taking its popular erectile dysfunction medication.

Continue Reading New Cialis Lawsuit Filed May Just Be the Beginning

As previously discussed, in December 2016, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation ordered Invokana cases consolidated into a Multi-District Litigation (MDL) in the United States District Court, District of New Jersey (MDL 2750).

Since the inception of the litigation, more than one thousand cases have been filed in the District of New Jersey. Cases filed in the MDL allege that individuals taking Invokana are at an increased risk of an amputation of a lower extremity (leg or toe), as well as an increased risk of suffering from ketoacidosis, which is a condition the causes the body to produce high levels of blood acids called ketones. Symptoms of ketoacidosis include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, fatigue, and difficulty breathing.

Continue Reading Invokana Cases Move Toward Trial in New Jersey

Victoza (liraglutide), an injectable Type II diabetes drug, which works by stimulating insulin production by the pancreas, received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) in 2010.

When taken in high doses (3 milligrams), Victoza, manufactured by Novo Nordisk, has been shown to help individuals lose weight. The drug suppresses an individual’s appetite, as well as decreases the absorption of sugar from the digestive system, and slows movement of food through the digestive system.

In essence, the individual is likely to feel fuller for a longer period of time when taking Victoza. Accordingly, individuals began reporting weight loss while taking Victoza.

Subsequently, in August 2017, the FDA also approved Victoza to reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke, and cardiovascular death, in adults with Type II diabetes and established cardiovascular disease.

Continue Reading Diabetes Drug, Victoza, May Have Weight Loss Benefits, but Allegedly Linked to an Increase Risk of Pancreatic Cancer

As we have previously reported, safety concerns regarding incretin mimetics (such as Byetta, Januvia/Janumet and Victoza), led to more than a thousand lawsuits being filed across the country.

Reports suggest that people taking the medications for the treatment of Type 2 diabetes may be at an increased risk of developing pancreatic cancer.

In August 2013, those lawsuits were consolidated in a Multi-District Litigation (MDL), before Judge Anthony J. Battaglia, in the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. The litigation suffered an unexpected setback when, in November 2015, the trial court granted summary judgment, essentially dismissing the claims.

Continue Reading Incretin Mimetics Cases See Signs of New Life on Appeal

In November 2017, counsel for plaintiffs and defendants in the Abilify litigation in New Jersey state court moved to have the litigation designated as a multicounty litigation (MCL).

As the New Jersey judiciary site notes, a “[m]ulticounty litigation may be distinguished from other personal injury claims by several distinct features. First, multicounty litigations involve large numbers of claims that are associated with a single product. Second, despite the number of claimants, there is a commonality of factual and legal issues. Third, there is a value interdependence between the different claims.”

Currently, there are nearly 50 Abilify cases filed in Bergen County in New Jersey Superior Court, but that number is expected to rise over the next few months.

Continue Reading New Jersey Abilify Cases: Parties Move for MCL Designation

A federal judge in New Jersey recently granted summary judgment to Plavix drug makers Bristol Myers-Squibb Company (“BMS”), Sanofi-Aventis U.S., L.L.C., Sanofi-Aventis U.S., Inc., and Sanofi-Synthelabo, Inc. in a lawsuit alleging that plaintiff’s gastrointestinal bleeding was caused by defendants’ prescription drug Plavix.

Plaintiff alleged that she suffered injuries as a result of defendants’ design, development, manufacture, promoting, marketing, distributing, labeling, and sale of Plavix, an anti-clotting medication.

Plavix was initially approved by the FDA for individuals with recent heart attack, stroke (including Transient Ischemic Attack or “TIA”), or peripheral arterial disease. Plavix inhibits blood platelets from forming clots and therefore increases the risk of bleeding. Its labeling has included information about that risk.

Plaintiff’s complaint asserts product liability related causes of action under California state law, for defective design, manufacturing defect, failure to warn, and negligence.

Continue Reading Plavix Decision Raises Questions About Learned Intermediary Doctrine