GlaxoSmithKline, in response to lawsuits brought by 8 U.S. states has agreed to pay hundreds of millions of dollars to settle legal actions over the diabetes drug Avandia (rosiglitazone).
The drug maker announced it will pay $229 million and that the settlement was within the provisions it had set aside for litigation previously.
Last year in one of the largest healthcare fraud cases in the United State history, Glaxo agreed to pay $3 billion dollars and plead guilty to criminal charges. That matter involved off-label marketing, including of Paxil to paediatric patients as well as charges that Glaxo neglected to provide federal regulators with safety data on Avandia.
Avandia was pulled from the European market in 2010. The current settlement does not involve an admission of liability from Glaxo and it is meant to avoid long trials.
Avandia belongs to a class of diabetes drugs called thiazolidinediones that lower blood sugar by decreasing insulin resistance. Since November 2007 more evidence of Avandia’s heart risks has accumulated and thousands of legal actions have been brought against the company over the drug. At the moment Glaxo is also the focus of a major probe being conducted by Chinese authorities over accusations of bribery to sell Glaxo medications in China.