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Sales of testosterone gels, creams expected to slow over next eight years

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Several top-performing testosterone replacement therapies will be losing their patents in the next few years, opening the door for less expensive generics and cutting into brand-name drug profits, according to a study conducted by Transparency Market Research. The study divided testosterone treatments into specific types – topical creams and gels, transdermal patches, injections, gum/buccal adhesives, implants, and oral drug forms. Creams and gels led the global market, particularly brands such as AndroGel by AbbVie, Axiron from Eli Lilly and Company, and Testim by Endo Pharmaceuticals. The creams and gels soared in sales in part because consumers found them easier to ... Read More

Johnson & Johnson profits soar despite Risperdal lawsuits


New product launches and strong pharmaceutical sales have propelled Johnson & Johnson’s third-quarter net earnings to $4.3 billion on revenue of $17.8 billion. “With a number of regulatory approvals, several new drug application submissions and new breakthrough therapy designations from the FDA, we are increasingly confident in our pipeline expectation of filing 10 new pharmaceutical products between 2015 and 2019, each with revenue potential over $1 billion,” said Alex Gorsky, Chairman and CEO of Johnson & Johnson. “Our broad-based business model, strategic investments and talented colleagues position us well for continued leadership in health care.” The company, which sells everything ... Read More

Natural Gas Explosion Levels Two Chicago-Area Townhomes

gas explosion, Illinois - image by ABC7 WLS News

A Chicago gas utility worker who was injured in a natural gas explosion that leveled two townhomes in Romeoville, Ill., has filed a personal injury lawsuit against a cable company subcontractor for allegedly damaging the gas line that later exploded. The blast occurred Oct. 11 as two employees of the Nicor gas utility company were fixing a gas leak that was reported earlier that day. One of the workers suffered minor injuries but the worker who filed the personal injury complaint was seriously injured in the blast. The blast occurred in the suburban townhouse about 7:30 p.m. as a Nicor ... Read More

Janssen tries to dodge $70 million Risperdal judgment


Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen Pharmaceuticals is desperately trying to skirt a landmark $70 million judgment over claims that its antipsychotic drug Risperdal disfigured a Tennessee boy. The drug company is questioning sufficiency of evidence on numerous issues and arguing that the court improperly limited its ability to tell the jury about the benefits of the drug. Janssen also contends that the court should have applied a $750,000 cap on damages in the case. In July, a Philadelphia jury slapped Janssen with the $70 million verdict in a lawsuit that alleged the company did not adequately warn of side effects, specifically ... Read More

Lawsuits against chemotherapy drug Taxotere consolidated in Louisiana

bald woman, Taxotere - Pixabay image

Thirty-three cases that had been filed federally across the U.S. against pharmaceutical company Sonafi SA were consolidated this month into a multidistrict litigation (MDL) in Louisiana district court, according to Law360. The drug maker is accused of marketing its chemotherapy drug Taxotere as superior to similar competing drugs, while concealing that the drug caused permanent hair loss. Law360 quotes from one of the suits filed by Ami Dodson in California saying that Sonafi SA began misrepresenting the safety and effectiveness of Taxotere as early as 1996, the year that the drug was approved for use by the Food and Drug ... Read More

Omnicare To Pay $28 Million To Settle Abbott Kickback Allegations

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Omnicare Inc., the nation’s largest nursing home pharmacy, has agreed to pay the U.S. government more than $28 million to settle whistleblower allegations that it solicited and received kickbacks from drugmaker Abbott Laboratories in exchange for promoting the anti-seizure drug, Depakote, for nursing home patients. Nursing homes rely on pharmacy benefit management companies like Omnicare to review their residents’ medical charts at least monthly and make recommendations to their physicians about what drugs should be prescribed for those residents. Omnicare’s most recent settlement resolves accusations that it received several millions of dollars in kickbacks from Abbott in exchange for pushing Depakote on ... Read More

Study: Testosterone does not improve sexual function

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Testosterone replacement therapy may look like the fountain of youth, but a new analysis has found the hormone supplements don’t provide any real benefits as far as improving cardiovascular health, sexual function and cognitive abilities. What testosterone treatments do provide are a laundry list of potential health issues that render the treatments a risky gamble for men. The analysis, published in the journal PLOS One, involved a review of 226 clinical trials conducted between 1950 and 2016 in which testosterone treatments were compared to a placebo for cardiovascular health, sexual function, physical function, mood or cognitive function. “Testosterone has been ... Read More

Rental Car Insurer Can’t Hide Behind Avis For Overcharges, Class Action Argues

Avis car rental counter - Flickr image

The lead plaintiff in a proposed class action lawsuit accusing Ace American Insurance Co. of charging tax and hidden fees on optional insurance for vehicles rented at Florida airports has asked the presiding judge not to dismiss the case, arguing the insurer is trying to escape its liability for the fees by claiming the Avis car rental agency imposed the charges. Plaintiff Stephen Morgan, who is represented by the Beasley Allen law firm, filed the class action against Ace after he reserved a car through Avis Rent A Car at the Jacksonville International Airport. Mr. Morgan rented the car for ... Read More

U.S. Investigating Whistleblower’s Fraud Allegations Against South Carolina Hospital System

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The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) is investigating claims made by a whistleblower in a False Claims Act lawsuit alleging that a South Carolina hospital system defrauded Medicare, Medicaid, and Tricare by entering into unlawful financial relationships with physicians to acquire referrals and boost government billings. Elisabeth Markley, a former Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System (SRHS) physician compensation coordinator, filed the whistleblower lawsuit in federal court in Greenville, S.C., Sept. 25, 2015. Ms. Markley accuses the hospital system of acquiring several medical practices and overpaying the physicians in them with the understanding that those physicians would refer patients to SRHS for ... Read More

Testosterone companies fight over patent infringement

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A patent infringement lawsuit filed against drug maker Lipocine Inc. by Clarus Therapeutics was dismissed by the U.S. District Court in Delaware. Clarus was suing Lipocine over claims that Lipocine’s key drug candidate, LPCN 1021, infringed Clarus’ patent of Clarus’ similar drug JATENZO. LPCN 1021 and JATENZO are experimental oral testosterone replacement therapy currently in Phase III clinical trials. They are designed for boost levels of the male hormone in men with hypogonadism, a deficiency of testosterone due to disease or defect. Testosterone treatments are generally administered by injection, topical gel, or nasal spray. Both LPCN 1021 and JATENZO aim ... Read More