Bloomberg reports that AstraZeneca “buried” unfavorable studies on its antipsychotic drug Seroquel, according to an internal e-mail unsealed as part of litigation over the medicine.
Specifically, Seroquel’s manufacturer is accused of doing what has been alleged of drug companies thousands of times over the course of human history: failing to publicize results of at least three Seroquel clinical trials and cherry picking the data that it did publish about the risks associated with Seroquel.
Apparently, Seroquel’s manufacturer saw the whole thing coming: John Tumas, an AstraZeneca publications manager, wrote in an email that AstraZeneca had “buried trials 15, 31, 56.” Tumas showed in the email that he realized burying Seroquel data was not without risk:
The larger issue is how we face the outside world when they begin to criticize us for suppressing data.
Of course, this was hardly a one man conspiracy. Seroquel had engaged in a “great smoke-and-mirrors job” in dealing with U.S. and Canadian investigators on the trial’s results, according to an email from Richard Lawrence, an AstraZeneca official, in February 1997:
Adopting the approach Don has outlined should minimize (and dare I venture to suggest) could put a positive spin (in terms of safety) on this cursed study.
While underscoring the themes plaintiff’s Seroquel lawyers have long argued, AstraZeneca’s early awareness and efforts to suppress information regarding the risks associated with Seroquel are not exactly shocking. Instead, it is consistent with relentless effort to promote Seroquel for anything and everything that has led right to the path of 15,000 lawsuits. If you think you may have a Seroquel case and would like to be included in the Seroquel class action, you can call one of our Seroquel class action lawyers for a free consultation at 800-553-8082 to discuss your Seroquel diabetes or Seroquel pancreatitis case with us.