Almost four years after Protein Sciences began selling its innovative flu vaccine, the Meriden company still struggles to gain a foothold in a marketplace dominated by pharmaceutical powerhouses. Orders for Flublok – the only flu vaccine not derived from eggs – remain well below company goals, and officials haven’t been able to get it into some major pharmacy chains such as CVS and Walgreens. “We’re doing better than last year, but we’re still not doing as well as I would like to do,” said CEO Manon Cox. The company aims to sell 900,000 doses of Flublok by the end of the current flu season in late March, she said. So far, it has sold just 250,000, even as widespread flu outbreaks spread across several parts of the country.
The state will receive $1.6 million as part of a $90 million multi-state settlement with the drug maker GlaxoSmithKline to resolve allegations that the company unlawfully promoted its diabetes drug, Avandia. Thirty-seven other states are participating in the settlement, following claims that GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) engaged in unfair and deceptive practices by misrepresenting Avandia’s potential cardiovascular risks and by promoting the drug to physicians and other healthcare professionals with false and misleading representations about Avandia’s safety profile. The settlement resolves the state’s claim against the company under the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act. Connecticut’s share of the settlement is $1,668,482, of which $100,000 will be allocated to the Department of Consumer Protection to support the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program and the agency’s Consumer Fund. Another $100,000 will go to the Attorney General’s Consumer Fund.