Defendants: Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiary Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc.
Defendant Law Firm: Tucker Ellis, Cleveland/ Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP
Counsel For Defendants:
John Q. Lewis -Tucker Ellis LLP- Cleveland
Mollie F. Benedict - Tucker Ellis LLP- Los Angeles
Allegations: Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA), Leg Amputation / Foot or Toe(s) Amputation; failure to adequately test the drug and warn of its risks.
Plaintiff Steering Committee
US District Judge Brian Martinotti appointed the plaintiff’s steering committee
Christopher A. Seeger (Co-Lead Counsel): Seeger Weiss LLP
Michael A. London (Co-Lead Counsel): Douglas & London, P.C.
James E. Cecchi (Liaison Counsel): Carella, Byrne, Cecchi, Olstein, Brody & Agnello
Ellen Relkin (Executive Committee): Weitz & Luxenberg, P.C.
Hunter J. Shkolnik (Executive Committee): Napoli Shkolnik, PLLC
Timothy O’Brien (Executive Committee): Levin, Papantonio, Thomas, Mitchell, Rafferty & Proctor, P.A.
Ashley Brittain-Landers - Schlichter Bogard & Denton LLP
John Gomez - Gomez Law Firm
Anthony D. Irpino - Irpino, Avin & Hawkins
Holly H. Dolejsi - Robins Kaplan, LLP
Danielle Ward Mason - Beasley, Allen, Crow, Methvin, Portis & Miles, P.C.
Frank M. Petosa - Morgan & Morgan, P.A.
Jason C. Webster - The Webster Law Firm
David S. Stellings - Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP
December 2016: Invokana cases were coordinated before U.S. District Judge Brian Martinotti of the District of New Jersey. MDL No 2750: IN RE: Invokana (Canagliflozin) Products Liability Litigation with a count of more than 1,000 cases as of October 2018.
Invokana cases are also pending in state courts in Pennsylvania, California, and New Jersey.
Important Legal Proceedings, Verdicts & Settlements:
A schedule for bellwether cases was selected; the first set of trials were to begin in September 2018. However, the defendants entered into negotiations to settle a large number of Invokana lawsuits pending in court.
Jul 2017: The FDA required a serious boxed warning to be highlighted in the labels about the increased risk of leg and foot amputations.
August 2017: J&J's Janssen Pharmaceuticals confirmed in its quarterly financial filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that it has more than 800 product liability cases across the nation for its anti-diabetic drug Invokana.
Jan 2018: According to the fourth quarter 2017 sales earnings report released by J&J, Invokana made $262 million, which was a 29% dip when compared to the previous reports. The low figures are reasoned to be due to the growing competition and awareness of the side-effects associated with this Type 2 diabetes medication.
May 2018: The FDA warned the manufacturers of Invokana, Invokamet, and Invokamet XR to speed track the process to include a Black Box Warning Label to warn about the increased risk of leg and foot amputations.
August 2018: A hand amputation case was filed by a plaintiff who developed severe tissue necrosis, dry gangrene, and blackening of the fingers when she was under Invokana treatment in 2015.
September 2018: Amidst recent FDA warnings regarding flesh-eating infections due to Invokana and similar diabetes drugs, a product liability lawsuit was filed by a Connecticut man who had to undergo a partial scrotum amputation, as he developed Fournier’s gangrene after taking Invokamet.
October 16, 2018: A New York-based firm requested a New Jersey federal court to establish a qualified settlement fund to administer the settlement of certain claims against the defendants. Attorney Michael London of D&L also the co-lead plaintiffs’ counsel representing nearly 142 plaintiffs expects that the settlement should resolve all of his cases out of the 1,000 plus lawsuits pending as consolidated litigation in the US District Court of New Jersey.
July 2020: The consumer rights advocacy group, Public Citizen, filed a petition with the FDA, asking to add stronger warning labels for commonly used type 2 diabetes drugs known as SGLT2 inhibitors like Invokana, Farxiga, Jardiance, and other similar drugs, which have been linked to serious and potentially life-threatening cases of diabetic ketoacidosis.
August 2020: The FDA issued a report indicating that it has lifted a Boxed Warning about amputation risk from type 2 diabetes drug canagliflozin, marketed under the brand names Invokana, Invokamet, and Invokamet XR.
More settlement agreements are likely on the way. Judge Martinotti had scheduled jury selection to begin in January 2019, but “in light of the tremendous efforts of the parties to achieve resolution for the various injuries claimed in this complicated multidistrict litigation,” Martinotti stayed discovery in the cases, essentially stopping their progress toward trial to provide more time for concerted settlement negotiations. Discovery stayed until October 30.