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Description of MDL No. 1431

Baycol Product Liability Litigation

This multidistrict litigation consists of over 1,000 cases currently pending before this Court. Several cases are also pending in various state courts. These cases involve allegations concerning a medication generically known as Baycol (also known as Lipobay, Cholstat or Cerivastatin). Baycol was commonly prescribed to aid in lowering cholesterol and triglycerides. It is within a class of drugs referred to as "statins", which are commonly prescribed for high blood pressure and heart disease. The plaintiffs allege that Baycol caused rhabdomyolysis, a disease which causes damage to muscle, kidney failure or other injuries. Baycol has been linked to over 100 deaths. It was withdrawn from the market in August 2001.

Plaintiffs allege that Defendants Bayer AG, Bayer Corporation, Glaxosmithkline plc and Smithkline Beecham d/b/a/ Glaxosmithkline tested, marketed, distributed, promoted and sold Baycol.

The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation determined that the Baycol cases filed involved common questions of fact, and that centralization of the Baycol cases was appropriate. Based on a number of factors, the Judicial Panel determined that the District of Minnesota was an appropriate forum. All Baycol cases were then ordered to be transferred to the District of Minnesota, and assigned to the Honorable Michael J. Davis to coordinate discovery and other pretrial matters. Subsequent Baycol cases filed in federal court will ordinarily be transferred to the District of Minnesota and become part of MDL No. 1431 as a "tag along" case. Once discovery and other pretrial matters have been concluded, the cases that constitute MDL No. 1431 shall be transferred back to the district in which the case was originally filed, for trial or other proceedings.