Elan to pay $203.5M for marketing misdeeds

Elan has joined the marketing-settlement club. The Irish drugmaker has agreed to pay $203.5 million to settle U.S. government probes into its sales and marketing tactics on the epilepsy drug Zonegran. As part of the deal, Elan's U.S. subsidiary will plead guilty to a misdemeanor violation. Another part: A corporate integrity agreement with the HHS Inspector General.

The settlement with the U.S. Attorney's Office in Massachusetts hasn't been finalized, Elan emphasizes in a statement, but the company expects to work out an acceptable integrity agreement and get the government's seal of approval for the deal. Other details weren't available.

The $203.5 million Elan will pay is just a fraction of the other marketing settlements we've seen recently. Pfizer agreed to pay $2.3 billion to resolve an off-label marketing probe, including a $1.2 billion criminal fine, the largest in U.S. history. Eli Lilly paid $1.42 billion to settle similar claims about its marketing of Zyprexa.

- read the Elan release
- see the news from Reuters