Gilead hit with another HIV drug lawsuit

April 7, 2023

Earlier this week, Gilead Sciences was accused of designing its HIV drugs with a formulation that the company knew to be toxic to patients.

In the lawsuit filed in California's Northern District US District Court, two patients, Darren Johnson and Roslyn Rochester, claim that they suffered injuries to their bones and kidneys after ingesting drugs that contained a form of tenofovir (TDF), called tenofovir disoproxil and with a fumaric acid salt tenofovir disoproxil fumarate. 

The drugs being called out specifically in the lawsuit are Viread, Truvada, Atripla, Complera and Stribild — all of which contain TDF as an active ingredient.

According to Johnson and Rochester, Gilead was aware that the dose of TDF in its drugs posed a significant risk of toxic effects, and had accumulated substantial evidence indicating that TDF caused harm to patients' kidneys and bones by the time it developed Stribild. The two are requesting declaratory relief and monetary compensation for their damages. 

This isn’t the first time Gilead has faced similar lawsuits regarding its HIV drugs. In 2018, two men accused the company of delaying the development of a new HIV drug that could have replaced drugs linked to TDF and  kidney and bone problems. Another lawsuit in 2019 alleged that Gilead cut deals with several pharma companies to protect combo HIV treatments from generics competition.