John Gueriguian, who worked 20 years for the FDA and is now a consultant, was on the stand in Anchorage Superior Court all day Friday as an expert witness for the state of Alaska.
The state is suing Eli Lilly and Co. to recover costs to its Medicaid system for what it contends are serious health problems, including weight gain and diabetes, caused by Zyprexa. The state says the company failed to warn of troubles because it counted on Zyprexa to become its next big moneymaker.
Global sales of Zyprexa approached $4.8 billion last year.
At the FDA, Gueriguian worked for the division that oversaw diabetic drugs, not psychiatric medication, so he wasn't directly involved in oversight of Zyprexa. Lawyers working for the state hired him to analyze Lilly documents and e-mails and said it's impossible to get current FDA employees to testify.
If Lilly could show that diabetes was common for this class of drugs, then it would no longer be a special problem for Zyprexa, said a Nov. 28, 2001, company document.
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