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Lilly Plans Layoffs Following Alzheimer's Drug Failure

Paul Sableman

After a promising Alzheimer’s drug failed a late-stage clinical trial, pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly has announced it will be laying off workers around the country.

The news of layoffs follows last month’s announcement concerning the failure of Solanezumab, which Lilly hoped would be the first drug to slow the progression of Alzheimer’s Disease.

In an email, Lilly spokesman Mark Taylor says the company anticipated positive results and had made what he called “certain staffing decisions” accordingly. Now that Solanezumab is off the table, Lilly will be trimming workers in its biomedicines sales force starting in 2017.

Taylor was mum about the number of workers but says the field-based salesforce is spread across the country.

Taylor adds the layoffs are also based on Lilly’s decision to stop promoting certain medicines whose patents are expiring soon.

The company did receive some good news. On Friday, the Food and Drug Administration approved the use of Jardiance-a Lilly product—to reduce the risk of cardiovascular death in adults with diabetes.  

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