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

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GlaxoSmithKline pulls all U.S. alli supplies, launches product-tampering probe

GlaxoSmithKline is recalling supplies of its OTC weight-loss drug alli in light of reports from U.S. consumers who found the wrong drug when they opened their bottles.

GlaxoSmithKline's diabetes contender albiglutide nabs EU approval

European officials gave a green light to GlaxoSmithKline's once-weekly diabetes drug Eperzan (albiglutide). The GLP-1 drug is awaiting FDA approval, with a decision expected next month.

Merck, GlaxoSmithKline halt copay help for Obamacare patients

Merck and GlaxoSmithKline have nixed their copay assistance for Obamacare patients. The two companies say they fear subsidizing patients' drug purchases will run afoul of federal anti-kickbacks law. But many other top drugmakers- including Novartis, Sanofi and Eli Lilly--will keep their copay cards and discounts, at least for now.

GlaxoSmithKline joins a biotech brain trust to make R&D more efficient

Translating all the information from the genomics revolution into verifiable drug targets has proven to be no easy task. Now, in an effort to bend the curve toward R&D success, GlaxoSmithKline is teaming up with external experts, putting up money and brainpower to launch a collaborative research effort.

Florida man threatened to poison J&J products unless it forked over cash

GlaxoSmithKline announced today that bottles of its alli over-the-counter weight-loss drug were tampered with, and warned consumers to look out for suspect packages.

GlaxoSmithKline flags product tampering as wrong pills surface in alli packages

Some U.S. consumers found the wrong drug when they opened their packages of alli, the GlaxoSmithKline weight-loss pill, the company said. Glaxo is warning alli users to check their packages carefully and avoid taking any pills that might not be authentic.

GlaxoSmithKline yanks European app for Tafinlar-Mekinist combo in melanoma

The FDA may have given its blessing to GlaxoSmithKline's melanoma combo Tafinlar and Mekinist. But not so fast, says its counterpart across the pond. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) wants more information, and that has prompted GSK to withdraw its application--for now.

With FDA decision looming, GlaxoSmithKline nails EU OK for diabetes drug albiglutide

With its PDUFA date for the once-weekly diabetes drug albiglutide looming at the FDA next month, GlaxoSmithKline announced today that the European Commission has OK'd the GLP-1 drug for marketing.

PhIII fail further dents hopes for GSK's cancer vaccine

Last month GlaxoSmithKline CEO Andrew Witty gave an upbeat assessment of the prospects of the MAGE-A3 cancer vaccine, with the executive saying the product has several chances to succeed. Now it has one fewer after the vaccine missed its primary endpoints in a Phase III lung cancer trial.

Toothpaste factory line or F1 racetrack? McLaren revs up Glaxo's production

How do you halve the time it takes for GlaxoSmithKline toothpaste makers to change over their lines? Reenvision the production line as an F1 racetrack, according to McLaren.