U.S. lawsuit over Merck's Fosamax dismissed

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NEW YORK (Reuters), Nov 23 - A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit alleging that Merck & Co.'s osteoporosis drug Fosamax causes jaw damage, more than two months after a jury deadlocked in a case involving a similar claim.

U.S. District Judge John Keenan on Monday found that Bessie Flemings, 74, a Mississippi resident, failed to present enough evidence to show that her use of Fosamax caused osteonecrosis of the jaw, or the death of jawbone tissue.

Keenan said Flemings' case was the second "bellwether" trial in nationwide litigation over Fosamax, which has spawned close to 900 lawsuits.

Robert Germany, a lawyer for Flemings, did not immediately return a call seeking comment. A Merck spokeswoman also did not immediately return a call seeking comment.

The case is Flemings v. Merck & Co., U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, No. 06-7631. The broader litigation in the same court is In re Fosamax Products Liability Litigation, No. 06-1789.

Last Updated: 2009-11-23 16:40:08 -0400 (Reuters Health)

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