Listed as number three in pharma sales, GlaxoSmithKline has had some rough luck thanks in part to the diabetes drug Avandia, which has been pulled out of Europe and restricted in the U.S after global side effect concerns since 2007. The company cut its losses on the drug, writing off $233 million in supplies and eliminating its marketing efforts of the drug.

The company has racked up some charges against its earnings, including over $6 billion in the fourth quarter of 2010 from Avandia and marketing settlements. GSK settled 10,000 Avandia lawsuits for a combined $460 million. Also, the company hit number three on FiercePharma's Top Layoffs of 2010 list with 5,201 jobs lost. While other companies look towards more spinoffs, GSK has focused on emerging markets as its ticket to higher revenue. It purchased Laboratorios Phoenix in 2009 and China's MeiRui in 2010; the UK-based company said the impact of its layoffs would be masked by more job opportunities in Asia and South America.

In early 2011, GSK and Human Genome Sciences gained FDA approval for Benlysta, the first new lupus treatment in more than 50 years, and experts believe it could be a $3 billion to $5 billion worldwide sales heyday for the partnership. But the FDA denied an extended approval and a potential $1 billion in sales to GSK from the prostate drug Avodart. While the drug was effective against low-risk malignant tumors, it potentially heightened the risk of developing more aggressive tumors.

GSK spun off its HIV treatments into ViiV Healthcare in 2009, combining it with Pfizer's former R&D efforts in the field. ViiV markets Ziagen, Trizivir, Epzicom and abacavir as part of its suite of drugs for HIV/AIDS.



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Are Glaxo's China sales reforms putting it at a commercial disadvantage?

Since Chinese officials slapped GlaxoSmithKline with a $489 million fine on bribery charges, the company has overhauled its sales practices to quash corruption there. But some in the industry say its reforms--which include eliminating sales-based compensation incentives for reps, nixing doctor speaking fees and tripling an in-house compliance team that checks every submitted receipt--could be negatively impacting its top line at a time when the company's already hurting. 

GSK's anticorruption overhaul in China may be hobbling sales

Since Chinese officials slapped GlaxoSmithKline with a $489 million fine on bribery charges, the company has overhauled its sales practices to quash corruption. But some say its reforms could hurt its top line at a time when the company's already suffering.

JAMA: Valeant's 18-fold price hikes top widespread increases in dermatology prices

A new study shows that prices for 19 brand-name dermatology meds, including two from Valeant Pharmaceuticals, have increased almost fivefold, on average, over the past 6 years.

One potential reason for GSK's sluggish Breo and Anoro sales

GlaxoSmithKline's respiratory newcomers--and blockbuster hopefuls--Breo and Anoro got off to a slower start than analysts expected. That was a problem for the drugmaker, which was counting on them to make up for plummeting sales of Advair, as pricing pressure in the U.S. and generics in Europe took their toll on the behemoth med.

GlaxoSmithKline inks a back-loaded $100M deal with Idera for renal R&D

GlaxoSmithKline is taking a gamble on Idera Pharmaceuticals' antisense drug technology, promising up to $100 million in a collaboration focused on renal disease.

MSF launches vaccine pricing petition aimed at Pfizer, GSK

Médecins Sans Frontières, a global charity and frequent pharma critic, has initiated a worldwide petition calling for Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline to reduce the prices of their pneumonia vaccines to $5 per child--for all three doses--in emerging markets and for humanitarian organizations.

GlaxoSmithKline Ebola vaccine shows safety in PhI

GlaxoSmithKline's experimental Ebola jab, which was taken to Phase I in the U.S. and Mali last October, was well-tolerated and elicited strong immune responses in adults.

Advera Health: Novartis, GSK asthma meds linked to more side effects than Merck drugs

Bestselling asthma drugs from Novartis and respiratory behemoth GlaxoSmithKline are also showing more adverse events in post-marketing safety data than competing products from Merck, according to a new report, potentially presenting issues further down the line as companies duke it out for market share.

Big Pharma warns scientific skills shortage could hold Britain back

Throughout the tough times faced by the British biopharma industry, the country could always point to its scientific excellence as a source of pride. Now, with more money swilling around, the sector should be enjoying better days, yet as financial woes have receded another resource shortage has come into view: The United Kingdom appears to be running low on scientists.

GSK shoots for diabetes-esque platform approach with new respiratory med in hand

GlaxoSmithKline has a vision for its respiratory unit that looks not unlike the portfolio approach some diabetes drugmakers have taken, with a range of therapies for different disease stages and different types of patients. And last week, the FDA approval of an add-on treatment for a subset of severe asthma patients brought it one step closer to achieving that vision.