CLEVELAND — The Ohio judge overseeing the opioid multidistrict litigation on July 15 lifted a protective order for ARCOS drug distribution data from before Dec. 31, 2012, saying there is “clearly no basis to shield the public view” of the data (In Re: National Prescription Opiate Litigation, MDL Docket No. 2804, No. 17-md-2804, N.D. Ohio, Eastern Div.).
WILMINGTON, Del. — A Delaware federal bankruptcy court judge on July 24 denied a motion by four cities and counties to create an official committee of public entities in the Insys Therapeutics Inc. Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceeding (In Re: Insys Therapeutics, Inc., et al., No. 19-11292, D. Del. Bkcy.).
SILVER SPRING, Md. — The Food and Drug Administration on July 24 asked Allergan PLC to recall its Biocell textured breast implants due to the increased risk of anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL), a rare type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
NEW YORK — A New York federal judge on July 23 denied a motion by three doctors to sever their criminal cases involving kickbacks allegedly taken to prescribe the opioid Subsys (United States v. Gordon Freedman, et al., No. 18-cr-217, S.D. N.Y., 2019 U.S. Dist. 122647).
DALLAS — The Texas federal judge overseeing the DePuy Pinnacle hip multidistrict litigation on July 22 granted a joint motion to reduce the common benefit holdback from 25 percent to the original 10 percent but ordered defendant DePuy Synthes Cos. to chip in an extra $139.6 million in fees and disclosed that DePuy estimates that its settlement of the litigation totals $950 million (In Re: DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., Pinnacle Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation, MDL Docket No. 2244, No. 11-md-2244, N.D. Texas, Dallas Div.).
FRESNO, Calif. — A California federal judge on July 18 partially dismissed a pelvic mesh injury case against Boston Scientific Corp., but allowed the plaintiff to refile certain claims (Autumn Zetz, et al. v. Boston Scientific Corporation, No. 19-451, E.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 120223).
FORT SMITH, Ark. — An Arkansas woman on July 18 sued Pfizer Inc., alleging that the drug maker failed to warn U.S. patients that the rheumatoid arthritis drug Xeljanz could cause sepsis that resulted in quadruple amputation (Marilyn Stube, et al. v. Pfizer, Inc., No. 19-6087, W.D. Ark.).
CINCINNATI — A defunct Ohio drug distributor, two of its former executives and two former pharmacy owners were indicted July 17 for conspiracy to illegally distribute and dispense the opioids oxycodone and hydrocodone (United States of America v. Anthony Rattini, et al., No. 19-cr-81, S.D. Ohio, Western Div.).
BOSTON — An unlicensed pharmacy technician who worked at the former New England Compounding Center (NECC) was sentenced July 18 to 24 months of probation, a $1,000 fine and restitution to be determined at a later date after he pleaded guilty last year to mail fraud (United States of America v. Scott Connolly, No. 14-cr-10363-6, D. Mass.).
CINCINNATI — The Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 17 affirmed dismissal of a Gardasil human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine injury case because the plaintiffs did not establish that the vaccine was contaminated or adulterated (Shannon Powers, et al. v. Merck & Company, Inc., et al., No. 18-4001, 6th Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 21137).
New developments in the following mass tort drug and device cases are marked in boldface type.
CINCINNATI — A lawsuit against the corporate successors of former plaintiff attorney Stanley M. Chesley by Kentucky fen-phen plaintiffs was voluntarily dismissed June 26 when the parties filed a notice with an Ohio federal court that the $19.19 million judgment against the law firm has been paid (Connie McGirr, et al. v. Thomas F. Rehme, et al., No. 16-464, S.D. Ohio, Western Div.).
NEW ORLEANS — The Louisiana federal judge presiding over the Taxotere hair loss multidistrict litigation on July 9 granted summary judgment and partial summary judgment in four cases on the grounds of the state’s statute of limitations and learned intermediary doctrine (In Re: Taxotere [Docetaxel] Products Liability Litigation, MDL Docket No. 2740, No. 16-md-2740, E.D. La., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 113447).
PHILADELPHIA — The Pennsylvania Superior Court on July 16 reversed a trial court’s compulsory nonsuit in a Risperdal gynecomastia case and remanded the case for a new trial, saying that under applicable Texas law, the plaintiffs presented sufficient prima facie evidence to support their claim (T.M., et al. v. Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc., et al., No. 184-EDA 2018, Pa. Super., 2019 Pa. Super. LEXIS 708).
CLEVELAND — An Ohio federal judge on July 8 remanded a Medtronic Inc. pacemaker case to state court after determining that federal-question jurisdiction or a preemption defense cannot be used to assert federal court jurisdiction (Heather Lecce, et al. v. Medtronic, Inc., et al., No. 18-2720, N.D. Ohio, Eastern Div., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 112731).
PHILADELPHIA — A Pennsylvania federal court judge on July 12 dismissed another attempt by a couple to bring a lawsuit alleging injury from the Zostavax shingles vaccine, this time agreeing with defendant Merck & Co. Inc. that the latest complaint is barred by the doctrine of res judicata (Chris Juday, et al. v. Merck & Co., Inc., et al., No. 19-2037, E.D. Pa., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 116369).
PHILADELPHIA — A Pennsylvania jury on June 28 awarded $500,000 in compensatory damages to a women who says she suffered injuries from a Prolift pelvic mesh device made by the Ethicon Women’s Health & Urology Division of Ethicon Inc., an attorney source told Mealey Publications (Linda Dunfee, et al. v. Ethicon Women’s Health & Urology, et al., No. 151002736, Pa. Comm. Pls., Philadelphia Co.).
TAMPA — A Florida state court jury on July 11 ruled in favor of Zimmer Inc. and a distributor in a hip prosthesis case, finding that the device was not defectively designed and was not the cause of the plaintiff’s injuries (Diane Noto, et al. v. Zimmer, Inc., et al., No. 17-CA-006630, Fla. Cir., Hillsborough Co.).
SAN DIEGO — Opening arguments took place July 15 in California’s civil lawsuit alleging that Johnson & Johnson and its Ethicon subsidiary engaged in false advertising and deceptive marketing for pelvic mesh devices (California v. Johnson & Johnson, et al., No. 37-2016-00017229-CU-MC-CTL, Calif. Super., San Diego Co.).
NORMAN, Okla. — An attorney for Johnson & Johnson and Janssen Pharmaceuticals on July 15 told an Oklahoma judge to trust Oklahoma doctors to decide whether to prescribe long-term use of opioid for chronic, non-cancer pain and find that the defendants played little to no role in the state’s opioid abuse crisis (Oklahoma, et al. v. Purdue Pharma L.P., et al., No. CJ-2017-816, Okla. Dist., Cleveland Co.).