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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GSK scientists accused of data theft in low-tech cybercrime case

Discussions about the threat of cybercrime typically invoke images of armies of hackers whose sole task is to steal data from corporations based across the globe. Yet, as GlaxoSmithKline is now finding out, when solid allegations of cyber-espionage surface a more mundane image of an insider armed with just an email account and a thumb drive emerges.

GlaxoSmithKline bails on Basilea's eczema drug, nixing a $72M payout

GlaxoSmithKline has abandoned its plot to win FDA approval for an eczema treatment from Basilea Pharmaceutica, ending a project that could have paid its partner about $72 million plus royalties.

Buzz: GSK looking to tap Qualcomm's IT know-how for $1B joint venture

Chipmaker Qualcomm is reportedly talking to GlaxoSmithKline about setting up a $1 billion joint venture. The deal, reports of which were posted by two financial publications, would mark a continuation of Qualcomm's drive to tighten its ties to biopharma, which was given impetus last year when it set up a VC fund with Novartis and inked a deal with Roche.

U.K. competition watchdog targets pharma for 'substantial fines'

The U.K.'s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is planning to levy "substantial fines" this year, marking a "big step up in the scale and impact" of its enforcement activity, Alex Chisholm, head of the agency, told The Financial Times. And one of those fines will likely be directed at a pharma company, Chisholm said, as the CMA probes drugmakers including GlaxoSmithKline and Pfizer for alleged wrongdoing.

Glaxo CEO: Consumer health can stand on its own, but don't expect a quick spinoff

Lately, GlaxoSmithKline CEO Andrew Witty has seemed open to splitting off the industry-leading consumer health joint venture he formed with Novartis last year. But let Witty be clear: It likely won't happen for a while.

GlaxoSmithKline scientists accused of stealing drug R&D secrets for China scheme

Yu Xue had a hard-earned reputation as a top chemist while she was working for GlaxoSmithKline in its Upper Merion, PA, facility. But Yu Xue--better known as Joyce--was also an accomplished thief during the last four years of her 10-year tenure, according to allegations laid out in a federal indictment filed by the U.S. Attorney's office in Eastern Pennsylvania.

GSK, Qualcomm rumored to form $1B med tech JV

GlaxoSmithKline and Qualcomm are in talks to create a joint venture to enable GSK to expand into med tech, according to a report by Bloomberg that cites anonymous people knowledgeable of the matter.

Glaxo weighs Qualcomm JV in quest to move 'beyond the pill'

Big Pharma companies--GlaxoSmithKline included--have been looking for ways to move "beyond the pill" to gain a technological leg up on their rivals. And now, the British drugmaker is reportedly weighing a move that could help it do just that.

Sanofi Pasteur joins other industry, academic players in Human Vaccines Project

Sanofi Pasteur has become the latest industry player to join up with the Human Vaccines Project--a global consortium seeking to address prominent issues hindering vaccine development--announcing late last week it's contributing funds for scientific and administrative activities.

FDA expands indication for GSK's Hib vaccine, Hiberix

In 2009, GlaxoSmithKline worked with U.S. health authorities to bring its Haemophilus influenzae Type b (Hib) vaccine, Hiberix, to market. Now, the FDA has expanded the indication of GSK's Hiberix from a booster to a full-series, four-dose vaccine to immunize children aged 6 weeks to four years.