The Japanese pharmaceutical company Daiichi Sankyo has agreed to pay up to $300 million to settle 2,300 drug lawsuits. Plaintiffs accused the company of failing to warn that Daiichi Sankyo’s blood pressure drug Benicar could cause gastrointestinal illness.
The settlement, which does not include a statement of liability, will cover plaintiffs in suits, first filed in 2014, that were later consolidated in U.S. federal court in New Jersey. The settlement will become final if plaintiffs in the class action suit approve it.
The FDA approved Benicar’s active ingredient, olmesartan medoxomil, in 2002. However, Daiichi Sankyo failed to include a warning that the drug was linked to gastrointestinal problems. The FDA mandated the change in 2013 after testing showed the linkage.
This is the second time in the last several years that Daiichi Sankyo has faced significant sanctions or payments. Two years ago the company paid $39 million to settle U.S. allegations that it made illegal payments to physicians prescribing its products.
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