June 6, 2014 — Lawsuits involving AndroGel (testosterone gel) and other testosterone replacement products will be centralized in one federal court, as ordered (PDF) today by the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML).
The testosterone Multi-District Litigation (MDL) will be located in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, overseen by District Judge Matthew F. Kennelly for coordinated pre-trial proceedings.
The panel of federal judges met last week to hear oral arguments. Today’s order will transfer 45 actions pending in four district courts to Illinois. AbbVie and Abbott Laboratories, the manufacturers of AndroGel, are headquartered in Chicago, Illinois.
The lawsuits were filed after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced in January that they were “investigating the risk of stroke, heart attack, and death in men taking FDA-approved testosterone products.”
The judges said they are typically hesitant to centralize litigation on an industry-wide basis. However, they believe it is appropriate because all of the lawsuits make similar allegations about the effects of testosterone in the body. Furthermore, many plaintiffs used multiple testosterone replacement products.
According to the JPML:
“All actions involve plaintiffs (or their survivors) who used one or more testosterone replacement therapies and contend that their (or their decedent’s) use of the drugs caused their injuries, which include heart attack, stroke, deep vein thrombosis, and pulmonary embolism.”
Plaintiff’s attorneys anticipate that hundreds or even thousands of lawsuits will be filed. These cases may involve a variety of testosterone replacement products, such as:
- Androgel (AbbVie Inc.) – Topical gel applied to skin
- Androderm (Actavis) – Patch
- Aveed (Endo Pharmaceuticals) – Intramuscular injection of testosterone and castor oil
- Axiron (Lilly USA, LLC) – Underarm liquid/cream
- Bio-T-Gel (Teva Pharmaceuticals) – Topical gel applied to skin
- Delatestryl (Endo Pharmaceuticals) – Intramuscular injection
- Depo-Testosterone (Unigen Life Sciences) – Injection
- Fortesta (Endo Pharmaceuticlas) – Topical gel applied to skin
- Natesto (Trimel Pharmaceuticals) – Nasal spray
- Striant (Auxilium Pharmaceuticals) – Buccal tablet absorbed through gums
- Testim (Auxilum Pharmaceuticals) – Topical gel applied to skin
- Testopel (Auxilium Pharmaceuticals) – Subcutaneous pellet
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