Actos News

Takeda Stock in Falling as Actos Sales Continue to Plummet
Monday, July 9, 2011

Stock in Takeda Pharmaceuticals has reached its lowest value in 11 years due to a massive sales drop in Actos (pioglitazone), the drugmaker's most profitable drug. Sales of Actos, used to treat Type 2 diabetes, were down nearly 24 percent in March 2012. Its sales will likely fall further in August of this year, when generic versions of the drug are due to hit the shelves of pharmacies throughout the U.S. 

Actos use has been on the decline since 2010, when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a safety announcement warning patients of an association between Actos and bladder cancer. Actos also carries a black box warning for congestive heart failure (this is the agency’s most severe type of medication warning).

It is estimated that Actos sales made up 20 percent of Takeda's revenue in 2011 and is also the most profitable Type 2 diabetes medication of all time, with worldwide sales totaling more than $16 billion since it was released in the U.S. in 1999. More than 10 million people from around the world have taken the drug.

As research continues to mount suggesting Actos use (particularly use of the drug for longer than 12 months) can lead to an increased risk of bladder cancer, so to do the chances of Takeda facing thousands of personal injury lawsuits. Studies linking Actos to bladder cancer have led France and Germany to ban prescriptions of the drug. In April of this year, Health Canada released an alert similar to that of the FDA, warning the public of the Actos bladder cancer risk.  

According to Drugwatch, patients are suing Takeda in a multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana. Others are joining two other massive cases in Illinois and California, which will hopefully begin sometime in 2013.



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