The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) centralized the litigation under Judge Richard M. Gergel in MDL No. 2502 in the U.S. District Court for South Carolina.
Over 500 lawsuits have been transferred into the litigation since May 2015. All of the plaintiffs accuse Pfizer of downplaying the increased risk of type-2 diabetes from Lipitor (atorvastatin), a cholesterol-lowering drug and one of the most widely-prescribed drugs in the world.
In 2012, the FDA issued Safety Warnings about the risk of diabetes from all statins, including Lipitor, citing data from the JUPITER clinical trial that found a 27% increased risk.
Since then, other studies have found even higher rates of diabetes among post-menopausal women on statins. In one study, approximately 10% of post-menopausal women on statins developed diabetes, compared to 6.4% of women who did not use statins.