In re Chantix (Varenicline) Products Liability Litigation
This multidistrict litigation consists of more than 275 cases currently pending before this court. Several cases are also pending in various state courts. These cases involve allegations concerning a medication marketed as Chantix. Chantix has been prescribed as an aid to assist individuals in their efforts to stop smoking. The plaintiffs allege that Chantix has a wide-variety of side-effects and risks, including behavioral changes, depression, aggression, agitation, hostility, rage, suicidal ideation, suicide attempts, and in many cases, suicide. The plaintiffs further allege that use fo Chantix is associated with heart rhythm disturbances, seizures and muscle disorders, loss of consciousness, vision disturbances, and diabetes.
Plaintiffs allege that defendant, Pfizer, Inc., designed, manufactures, sold, tested, marketed, distributed, promoted and sold Chantix.
The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation determined that the Chantix cases filed involved common questions of fact, and that centralization of the Chantix cases was appropriate. Based on an number of factors, the Judicial Panel determined that the Northern District of Alabama was an appropriate forum. All Chantix cases were then ordered to be transferred to the Northern District of Alabama, and assigned to the Honorable Inge P. Johnson to coordinate discovery and other pretrial matters. Subsequent Chantix cases filed in federal court will be transferred to the Northern District of Alabama and become part of MDL No. 2092 as a "tag along" case. Once discovery and other pretrial matters have been concluded, the cases that constitute MDL No. 2092 may be transferred back to the district in which the case was originally filed, for trial or other proceedings.