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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Hail GSK's chairman-to-be Philip Hampton: It's a tough job ahead

It's official: GlaxoSmithKline tapped Royal Bank of Scotland chair Philip Hampton to take the reins as chairman.

Accidental poliovirus dump adds to GSK's production woes

Having begun the month by revealing new problems at its Canadian flu vaccine plant and followed that up with a fine for violating the U.S. Clean Air Act last week, GSK has now accidentally dumped live poliovirus into the Belgian sewer system.

Adaptimmune gathers $104M to fuel hot immuno-oncology tech race

A slate of top-tier biotech investors are coming in with a whopping $104 million Series A designed to take Oxford-based Adaptimmune--named a Fierce 15 company earlier in the week--well down the clinical path on its immuno-oncology tech.

GlaxoSmithKline soon to name RBS chair Hampton as next chairman

The folks looking for a switcheroo at the top of GlaxoSmithKline may get their wish by the weekend. Sources tell Sky News that GSK is set to name a new chairman to replace Christopher Gent: Philip Hampton, now chairman at Royal Bank of Scotland and a widely reported frontrunner for the GSK job.

GSK says risk is low from vaccine-contaminated water released into Belgian river

GlaxoSmithKline has been working with Belgian officials after "human error," resulted in 45 liters of cleaning liquid contaminated with poliovirus to get dumped into a city sewer system and subsequently into the Lasne River.

Heads will roll at GlaxoSmithKline, investors say. The question is, whose?

China corruption settlement, check. Now GlaxoSmithKline CEO Andrew Witty needs to come to terms with investors. With quarterly sales off and new drugs lagging, shareholders are demanding change at the top--and this time, some are willing to go on the record.

GlaxoSmithKline, Avalon launch a pair of new build-to-buy biotechs

GlaxoSmithKline and San Diego-based Avalon Ventures have crafted two new biotechs which will explore the therapeutic potential of a pair of new drugs. These companies, dubbed Silarus Therapeutics and Thyritope Biosciences, will each get a $10 million Series A and research support from the venture group and its Big Pharma partner, which will consider whether it wants to snap up the companies once they hit the proof-of-concept stage a few years down the pipeline.

GSK China scandal resolved with $500M fine and suspended jail sentence

Chinese justice came swift and in secret for GlaxoSmithKline today. A top executive narrowly escaped prison, and the company was convicted and will pay a fine of nearly $500 million for bribery in a country known for its corruption.

Glaxo Ebola vax shows no adverse effects so far in first human trial

With the Ebola death toll mounting in West Africa, a Phase I trial of GlaxoSmithKline's experimental vaccine for the disease is underway at the U.S. National Institutes of Health.

NICE says 'yes' to GSK's melanoma pill, but only with a price cut

Britain's drug price watchdog, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), has given the go-ahead to GlaxoSmithKline's Tafinlar, which is among the new class of melanoma drugs that target tumor mutations. Not surprisingly, though, there's a catch: GSK must provide the drug at an undisclosed discount, according to NICE's guidance document announcing the decision.