Lilly nears another Zyprexa settlement

Eli Lilly is close to settling another slate of Zyprexa marketing cases. According to the company's quarterly report, it's in "advanced discussions" with attorneys general investigating the company for off-label promotions of the antipsychotic drug. Lilly took a $105 million charge against earnings in anticipation of a settlement, the Wall Street Journal Health Blog reports.

This settlement would be the latest in a series. Lilly's marketing practices on Zyprexa have drawn scrutiny from states and the feds. Some of those probes were settled earlier this year when Lilly agreed to pay $1.42 billion to the U.S. Justice Department and a number of states. Previously, the company had pledged to pay $1.2 billion to plaintiffs in liability suits, and another $77 million or so to 33 states, including Alaska.

All of that together, however, doesn't equal what Lilly makes in a single year on Zyprexa; last year sales amounted to $4.7 billion, or 23 percent of the company's revenues.

Twelve state Zyprexa lawsuits remain outstanding, a spokesman told the Health Blog, and this latest settlement effort would wrap up a "subset" of that number. Stay tuned for details.

- read the Health Blog post