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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Cambrian raises $10M for DNA printing tech used by GSK

Proponents of DNA printing have heralded it as a way to do everything from bringing alien life back from Mars to delivering vaccines in the event of a pandemic. And the technology has attracted GlaxoSmithKline and Roche, both of which have taken an interest in Cambrian Genomics.

NewLink Ebola vaccine trial to start in Canada

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GSK, Novo earn top marks getting their meds to poor, but more work lies ahead

Big Pharma earned gold stars in 2014, as the industry's top drugmakers did more to get their meds to patients in the world's poorest countries. But despite recent progress, companies still have room to grow in R&D and distribution, the Index notes.

Clovis taps GlaxoSmithKline to team up on lung cancer

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Reuters: Apollo interested in GSK's entire $3B package of mature drugs

GlaxoSmithKline has long explored a sale of some $3 billion worth of its older drugs, planning to shed products by geographic region to meet buyers' interests. Now, the company could have a more enticing offer on its hands as private equity firm Apollo Global Management is planning to bid GSK's entire portfolio of drugs, rather than snatch up businesses by region, people familiar with the process told Reuters.

Dendreon bankruptcy weighs on cancer vaccine field

Ever since Dendreon's lackluster Provenge launch, the Washington-based biotech's failures have cast a pall over the troubled cancer vaccine field. And the company's bankruptcy won't help with that.

GlaxoSmithKline's effort to relaunch cancer R&D faces skepticism

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Glaxo hep C vaccine delivers promising early results

Next-generation hepatitis C drugs may be breaking revenue records now, but eventually a vaccine to prevent the disease could cut into the cash cows' market share. That candidate might come from GlaxoSmithKline, whose hepatitis C vaccine just passed an early test, generating strong and broad immune responses not seen before against the transmissible liver disease.

GlaxoSmithKline heads to the FDA with its next big respiratory bet

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