Actos News

Nearly 800 Actos Bladder Cancer Cases Have Been Consolidated in Federal Court
with Four More Filed Last Week by Baum Hedlund
Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Lafayette, Louisiana, August 21, 2012 – Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman reports that almost 800 federal cases have been filed by individuals who allege that Actos caused their bladder cancer.  The law firm also announced that it just filed a new bundled complaint (6:12-cv-02208)  in federal court against Takeda Pharmaceuticals, its subsidiaries and Eli Lilly on behalf of four men who claim that taking the diabetes drug Actos (pioglitazone), caused their bladder cancer. Two of the men are joined by their wives in the Actos bladder cancer case.

The Plaintiffs are: Alfred Gallier and Anne Gallier of Texas; Robert Richardson of Texas; Richard Carlos and Kathleen Ann Carlos of Nevada; and others. The Court will unbundle the complaint and assign each case its own case number.

The complaint, which was filed last week in the United States District Court in the District of Louisiana in Lafayette, alleges that defendants willfully misled plaintiffs, the health care community and the general public by aggressively marketing Actos as safe when they knew or should have known that the diabetes medication was linked to bladder cancer. The personal injury case seeks compensatory damages from Takeda, its subsidiaries and Eli Lilly (which launched and marketed Actos in the U.S. along with a Takeda subsidiary) for the pain and suffering Actos caused the four men.

Actos (pioglitazone) was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1999 to treat type 2 diabetes. According to the lawsuit, prior to the approval of Actos, defendants were aware of scientific data linking pioglitazone to bladder cancer. After approval, defendants continued to observe research that “presented a statistically significant demonstrated higher percentage of bladder cancer cases in patients receiving Actos,” the complaint claims. Not only did defendants actively conceal this knowledge from the public and the medical community, the lawsuit says, but continued to aggressively market and promote Actos as safe and effective.

One of the numerous examples of this manipulation presented in the complaint is the case of the Takeda-funded PROactive study, and its 2005 publication. Despite researchers having found a statistically significant association between the use of Actos and bladder cancer, this information was not included in the published paper and was grossly downplayed by Takeda.

“As a direct result of defendants’ negligent and reckless actions, our clients have suffered serious consequences from their long term Actos use, including bladder cancer and aftereffects, physical pain and suffering, mental anguish, loss of enjoyment of life as well as economic losses,” stated plaintiffs’ attorney Cynthia Garber, who is also a registered RN. “We allege that the defendants intentionally omitted publishing the risks associated with Actos in order to make vast profits from the popular drug. Takeda Pharmaceuticals, its subsidiaries and Eli Lilly, at the very least, should be held responsible for failing to warn the public about the risks associated with this defective drug.”

The lawsuits are consolidated before U.S. District Judge Rebecca Doherty into MDL No. 2299, IN RE: Actos (Pioglitazone) Products Liability Litigation, where it will join, according to the MDL clerk, nearly 800 cases already consolidated there.  It is likely that thousands of Actos bladder cancer cases will eventually be consolidated into the MDL.

The Actos bladder cancer cases that have been filed in multiple (federal) districts across the nation have been transferred to the Actos MDL (multi-district litigation) in the United States District Court for the Western District of Louisiana so that one judge can coordinate and conduct all pretrial proceedings culminating in an ultimate federal jury trial which will address Takeda and Eli Lilly’s alleged liability.  The Actos case transfers are made by the United States Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation authorized by 28 U.S.C. 1407.  The very first federal bladder cancer cases were transferred to the MDL at the end of 2011.

Actos has been in the center of controversy the past few years due to worrying data linking the drug to bladder cancer. On June of 2011, an explosive French study reported a statistically significant risk of bladder cancer in patients taking pioglitazone. These results prompted both France and Germany to suspend the prescription of Actos and other pioglitazone-containing medications.

Also in June of 2011, the FDA issued a Public Safety Announcement which warned the public about a bladder cancer risk in patients who took Actos for longer than one year and at higher cumulative doses. The FDA added this information to the Medication Guide as well as the Warnings and Precautions section of the Actos label.

Canada followed suit with its own warning in April 2012. In a safety advisory warning, Health Canada stated that based on scientific research, the risk of bladder cancer was higher in patients who took pioglitazone in the highest doses and for the longest durations.

About Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman, P.C.

Baum Hedlund has filed numerous Actos bladder cancer lawsuits in both state and federal courts against Takeda Pharmaceuticals, its subsidiaries, and Eli Lilly.

Years of experience in pharmaceutical litigation have prepared the team of attorneys working on Baum Hedlund’s Actos bladder cancer lawsuits. Baum Hedlund has successfully represented clients harmed by medications in over 4,000 individual personal injury and wrongful death cases, in addition to representing consumers in multiple pharmaceutical class actions against major pharmaceutical companies such as Alpha Therapeutic, Armour Pharmaceutical Co., Baxter Health Care Corp, Bayer Corp., Dalkon Shield, Eli Lilly, GlaxoSmithKline, and Pfizer.

Our Actos bladder cancer lawyers have an in depth understanding of biomedical research, clinical trials, statistics, the pharmaceutical industry and marketing, as well as successful and effective discovery procedures and extensive work with experts on complicated scientific issues.



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