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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The color purple knocks back Novartis' Advair rival in Germany

GlaxoSmithKline's asthma behemoth Advair may be losing ground in Europe, but a legal win may stop some of the bleeding--at least in Germany. The British pharma giant has obtained a preliminary injunction there to stop Novartis' Sandoz from hawking its generic, AirFluSal Forspiro, thanks to the inhaler's purple color.

GlaxoSmithKline's cancer vaccine MAGE-A3 suffers its second PhIII flop

Once a top Phase III program at the pharma giant, MAGE-A3 failed to hit a pair of primary endpoints for non-small cell lung cancer, its second failure since the melanoma flop that occurred in the first hurdle of the study reported last fall.

Failure of sexual health clinics to offer HPV vaccine leaves high-risk groups vulnerable

Concerns about cost and promiscuity have led to many countries struggling to increase uptake of human papillomavirus vaccines. England fits into this category, but survey data suggests it has a more fundamental problem: High-risk groups are less likely to be offered the vaccine.

In latest marketing-reform move, GSK recruits in-house doctors to speak for products

GlaxoSmithKline may be phasing out speaking fees for doctors, but that doesn't mean doctors won't be speaking about its products. As Bloomberg reports, the company plans to add physicians to its in-house marketing staff.

GSK touts Anoro results as it preps for generic attacks on $8B-seller Advair

With aging top dog Advair losing ground to generic and branded competitors alike, GlaxoSmithKline is grooming a lineup of respiratory up-and-comers to step in with their own blockbuster sales. And new study results comparing Advair with not-yet-launched Anoro Ellipta could help the fledgling COPD treatment do just that.

Another Glaxo respiratory drug sees regulatory filings in its future

The British pharma giant says it's nailed the primary endpoint in a Phase III study of its injectable candidate mepolizumab, which will help set the severe eosinophilic asthma treatment up for its first regulatory filings.

GlaxoSmithKline maps a route to regulators with positive PhIII asthma data

GlaxoSmithKline says it nailed the primary endpoint in a Phase III study of its injectable IL-5 drug mepolizumab, beating out a placebo with statistically significant results for severe eosinophilic asthma and setting the stage for the first regulatory filings for the drug.

Hearts, stars, diamonds: Pharma could turn pill shapes into Lucky Charms

The FDA's new guidelines for pill design may be the stick driving drugmakers to consider medication errors when blueprinting their drugs. But there's a carrot, too. With new tablet technologies, companies have more freedom to build their brands by making their pills distinctive.

GlaxoSmithKline gets judge's say-so for false-advertising suit against Teva

How often does one drugmaker sue another for false advertising? Well, GlaxoSmithKline did just that after Teva Pharmaceutical Industries' generic copy of Wellbutrin XL went up in flames.

GlaxoSmithKline's FDA batting average tops the industry; Lilly, not so much

Reaping the benefits of deep-seated R&D reorganization, GlaxoSmithKline had the industry's best 6-year run of FDA nods for new drugs, according to EvaluatePharma, leading its competitors by a wide margin and leaving approval-starved outfits like Eli Lilly and Merck in the dust.