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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GlaxoSmithKline's Advair loses share to AstraZeneca's aggressive Symbicort discounts

Advair's throne is slowly eroding. With stepped-up competition from rival lung drugs--including AstraZeneca's Symbicort--GlaxoSmithKline's top-selling product, with $7.7 billion in 2012 sales, is losing share in the U.S.

Big Pharma superteam joins NIH to share data, discover new drugs

The National Institutes of Health has persuaded 10 rival drugmakers to briefly set aside their competitive spirits and collaborate on drug discovery projects in four major diseases, pooling their data and expertise to kick-start early-stage efforts.

Study: Merck's and GSK's HPV vaccines don't encourage risky sex

When the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looked into the reasons behind low uptake of GlaxoSmithKline's and Merck's human papillomavirus vaccines last year, the effect of parental attitudes to sex grabbed the headlines. Yet while parents may fear the vaccine will lead to risky sex, all the evidence suggests otherwise.

CDC finds rare cases of nurses injecting GSK's and Merck's oral rotavirus vaccines

The U.S. childhood immunization schedule is overwhelmingly made up of injectables. Yet in among the vaccines for measles, mumps and other diseases are two orally delivered products--GlaxoSmithKline's and Merck's rotavirus vaccines. The rarity of oral vaccines means providers have less experience delivering them, but does this mean there are more errors?

Buzz: GlaxoSmithKline prepares to unveil a new PhIII lineup

GlaxoSmithKline picked up a slate of new drug approvals in 2013, a key accomplishment for a pharma giant that set out several years ago to shake up a moribund, multibillion-dollar research operation.

UPDATED: GSK warns of a possible global shortage of chickenpox vaccines

It turns out that Germany will not be the only country facing a shortage of GlaxoSmithKline's chickenpox vaccines. While healthcare providers there have already been given a heads up to prepare for rationing, the company says deliveries worldwide will be affected.

The top 10 pharma companies in social media

Chatting with the public is not in pharma's comfort zone. Drugmakers are adept at the one-way communication known as direct-to-consumer advertising, and some of them deal well with the media....

GlaxoSmithKline clears an EU hurdle with its once-delayed GLP-1 diabetes drug

GlaxoSmithKline is inching toward European approval for albiglutide, winning a recommendation for its latest diabetes contender as the market for similar drugs gets more and more crowded.

Buzz: Back from the ER, a wounded Ariad spurs a fresh round of takeover rumors

Market rumors about a possible biotech buyout are usually triggered by research and marketing success. In Ariad's case, mere survival sufficed.

Biotechs trumpet pandemic vaccine deals and data as the H7N9 bird flu threat grows

The H7N9 bird flu virus is once again spreading across China, and with evidence of human-to-human transmission also mounting, the need for effective vaccines is growing. The U.S. National Institutes of Health is trialing a Sanofi vaccine, and a number of smaller companies are also developing H7N9 vaccines.