Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. and Eli Lilly & Co. have been ordered to pay a total of $9 billion in punitive damages in connection to the diabetes drug Actos. A Louisiana jury found that the companies did not disclose the proper information about cancer risks associated with Actos.
Based in Japan, Takeda is the manufacturer of Actos, a prescription medication for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. Eli Lilly & Co. helped to promote the drug. Both companies are accused of failing to warn consumers about the increased risk of bladder cancer linked to Actos.
Actos had previously been a major seller for Takeda until its patent expired in 2011 and it began facing generic competition. Additionally, sale of Actos was suspended in both Germany and France in 2011 due to its connection to increased cancer risk.
Takeda executives failed to provide clear warnings about the associated cancer risk for seven years, Bloomberg reports. Research definitively showed Actos’ link to bladder cancer wasn’t an accident or oversight, yet the company did not issue a warning to consumers.
More than 2,700 Actos lawsuits have been consolidated before the U.S. District Judge Rebecca Doherty in Louisiana, the Bloomberg article states.