Lawyers for the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) filed a lawsuit against Gilead on Tuesday, May 8, 2018, for personal injury and class action. They alleged that Gilead delayed the development of a safer drug in place of their very profitable HIV drug tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF) for almost 20 years.
The personal injury action is on behalf of HIV positive men in Southern California, who claim they sustained kidney and bone damage from taking TDF according to prescribed doses. The class action is on behalf of two different HIV men, also living in Southern California, who claim the same side effects from the drug.
Both plaintiffs allege that Gilead salespeople hid from them and other HIV positive patients and their physicians the truth about the side effects and risks linked to TDF. They also allege that the manufacturer refused to share the results of its study performed in 2001 which indicated that the alternative formulation was more viable and safer.
In the class action, AIDS Healthcare Foundation’s lawyers wish to represent all patients who were given TDF and other HIV drugs such as Atripla and Truvada from October 26, 2001 to the present either personally or through their physicians as a result of Gilead’s misrepresentation. One of the misrepresentations given in the charges is, “Where Gilead did list potential patient concerns [with TDF], it misrepresented the risks as primarily for already-renally impaired or bone-compromised patients.”
The Los Angeles Times has stated that Gilead paid doctors to conduct small clinical trials to test tenofovir alafenamide (TAF), a promising formulation. Then the company shelved the positive results from those clinical trials in order to protect its patents from competitors and to raise its prices for the lucrative TDF.
The attorneys alleged that Gilead was warned two times by the FDA to stop its salespeople from making false claims about the toxicity of TDF.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Gilead has declined to comment till they have reviewed the complaints thoroughly.