30.3 million Americans, about 9.4% of the U.S. population have diabetes. Of those, about 23.1 million people have been diagnosed with the condition. While some people with diabetes are able to control the condition through diet and exercise, many others require medication to manage their condition. The types of medications used for the condition include alpha-glucosidase inhibitors, biguanides, DPP-4 inhibitors, SGLT-2 inhibitors, sulfonylureas, and thiazolidinediones. Thiazolidinediones work by decreasing the amount of glucose in the liver. They also help fat cells utilize glucose better. One type of thiazolidinediones, Actos, has been attributed to an increased risk in bladder cancer. Bloomberg Law reports that the makers of Actos are facing revived a class-action lawsuit over their labels.
On December 3rd, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld that plaintiffs have the right to sue Takeda Pharmaceuticals and Eli Lilly & Co. The companies are expected to face renewed litigation alleging the two companies conspired to hide the link between their medication and bladder cancer.
The suit, which was covered under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, alleged that refused to change the warning level on Actos even after they learned the drug increased the risk of developing bladder cancer. The suit further alleged that the companies conspired to commit mail fraud by intentionally misleading doctors, consumers, and insurers that Actos was safe.
The initial lawsuit was dismissed for lack of standing, with the finding that the plaintiffs failed to allege that the harm caused to them was caused by the RICO violation.
The Ninth Circuit Court disagreed. The court found that the plaintiffs sufficiently alleged a direct relationship between the RICO violation and the harm.
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