Eli Lilly

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Eli Lilly and Company is a pharmaceutical company based in Indianapolis, Indiana. It is the 149th largest corporation in the United States. It is best known for the anti-depressant Prozac. Other top drugs include Zyprexa (schizophrenia and bipolar disorder), Cymbalta (depression), Gemzar, Alimta (cancer), Humalog insulin and the osteoporosis medication Evista. The company also manufactures cardiovascular and anti-infective pharmaceuticals as well as animal health products. Eli Lillymarkets its products in 135 countries and is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange.[1]

In the fiscal year ending in December of 2009, the company recorded sales of approximately $21.84 billion dollars and had 40,360 employees. [2]

Access Eli Lilly's corporate rap sheet compiled and written by Good Jobs First here.

Support for the American Legislative Exchange Council

Eli Lilly was a "Chair" level sponsor of the ALEC Annual Conference in 2016, which in 2010 equated to $50,000,[3] and a "Trustee" level sponsor of 2011 American Legislative Exchange Council Annual Conference, which in 2010, equated to $5,000.[4]

About ALEC
ALEC is a corporate bill mill. It is not just a lobby or a front group; it is much more powerful than that. Through ALEC, corporations hand state legislators their wishlists to benefit their bottom line. Corporations fund almost all of ALEC's operations. They pay for a seat on ALEC task forces where corporate lobbyists and special interest reps vote with elected officials to approve “model” bills. Learn more at the Center for Media and Democracy's ALECexposed.org, and check out breaking news on our PRWatch.org site.

Financial Support for ALEC

  • In 2008, 4th quarter, Eli Lilly gave ALEC a $20,000 grant for Improving Outcomes or Undermining Quality? A Look at "Comparative Effectiveness Research" in Medicine. [5]

Animal testing

Eli Lilly does animal testing.

Facility information, progress & USDA-APHIS reports

This facility performed animal experiments involving pain or distress but no analgesics, anesthetics or pain relievers were administered. For copies of this facility's U.S. Department of Agriculture-Animal Plant Health Inspection (APHIS) reports, other information and links, see also Facility Reports & Information, Eli Lilly. [6]

USDA AWA reports

As of May 26, 2009, the USDA began posting all inspection reports for animal breeders, dealers, exhibitors, handlers, research facilities and animal carriers by state. See also USDA Animal Welfare Inspection Reports.

Contract testing

Eli Lilly contract tests out to SNBL, [7] an international contract research organization (CRO). Firms hire CROs to conduct toxicity animal testing for agrochemicals, petrochemicals, household products, pharmaceuticals and toxins. SNBL has a history of gross animal welfare violations. See also SNBL.

Monsanto sells U.S. Posilac (rBGH) division to Eli Lilly

In August 2008, Monsanto sold their Posilac division to Eli Lilly and Company for $300 million (who exclusively sold Posilac outside the US for 10 years before the acquisition.) [8], [9] Posilac creates additional Growth Factor One (IGF-1) in milk (a growth hormone which is identical in cows and humans). IGF-1 is considered to be a fuel cell for cancer growth and has been identified in the rapid growth cancer. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) insists that IGF-1 is destroyed in the stomach. [10] However, if that were true, the FDA has proven that breast feeding cannot work. [11] It is worth noting that rBGH is banned in every industrialized country in the world except for the U.S., Mexico and Brazil. According to Dr. Michael Hanson of the Consumers Union of the U.S., there is strong scientific evidence to support potential health hazards of rBGH and a case for labeling dairy products that contain rBGH. [12] The FDA approved the use of bovine growth hormone (rbGH) for cows on February 4th, 1994. Both Europe and Canada turned down Monsanto's application for approval. [13] See also FDA.

Disclosure initiatives

In September 2008, Eli Lilly announced that it will begin reporting its payments to doctors in late 2009, using an online database. But the disclosure is limited to payments of more than $500 made for giving talks or advice to the company; payments for other services or gifts will not be included. Payments made before 2009 will also not be disclosed. Eli Lilly president and CEO John Lechleiter explained the move by stating, "We've learned that letting people see for themselves what we're doing is the best way to build trust." [14], [15]

Lilly announced its new registry of payments to doctors comes as Congress considered the Physician Payments Sunshine Act of 2007. The bill would require disclosure of any drug company payment to doctors of more than $25, whether the payment was for food, travel, entertainment, gifts, consulting fees or any other purpose. [16]

In May 2007, as the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance was investigating drug company grants to patient groups, Eli Lilly began disclosing its grants to U.S. nonprofit groups and educational institutions. [17]

Unethical drug studies, programs & partnerships

In 1994, the FDA chastised Lilly for using alcoholics in a drug study. [18]

Drug issues


1.4 billion dollar charge in Zyprexa probe

In October of 2008, the company settled an 18-month federal Zyprexa probe spanning 32 states. According to a company statement from Robert Armitage, senior vp and general counsel:

"The government’s investigation ...has been ongoing for five years and we now have a heightened sense of responsibility to all our stakeholders to intensify efforts to resolve these issues."

The investigation was initiated by the U.S. Attorney in Philadelphia in 2004. In November of 2007, Eli Lilly received a grand jury subpoena. The State Medicaid Fraud Control Units of over states coordinated its investigation with federal authorities into the Medicaid-related claims concerning Zyprexa marketing. 11 other states; Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Utah, West Virginia, Connecticut, Arkansas and Idaho have filed lawsuits over Zyprexa but did not participate in the coordinated probe. [19]

According to an October of 2005 article in the San Francisco Chronicle, Medicaid programs purchase an estimated 60 to 75% of antipsychotic drugs, nationwide. In California, Zyprexa was the highest expenditure at close to $250 million. On November 28, 2005, the Indianapolis Business Journal listed Zyprexa as the most costly antipsychotic covered by South Carolina's Medicaid program. According to Bloomberg News in September of 2005:

"The 40-year-old drug perphenazine costs less than $1.50 a day, while the newer medicines can cost 10 times as much."

Eli Lilly has even found ways to convince the Veterans Administration to prescribe Zyprexa. Dr Robert Rosenheck, a Director with the VA, calculated that the VA spent more than $208 million on antipsychotics that year, with over $106 million, or more than half, spent on Zyprexa.

Diabetes lawsuits

According to the New York Times, the company documents reveal that Eli Lilly was fully aware of Zyprexa's link with diabetes and weight gain. Using fraud, kickback and antitrust statutes, state attorneys general all over the country have filed lawsuits against Eli Lilly to recover the money paid for Zyprexa as well as medical costs for patients harmed by Zyprexa, whose health care is covered by public programs. In February of 2006, West Virginia and Alaska filed lawsuits against the company. They alleged that Eli Lilly marketed Zyprexa for unapproved uses in their states. The result cost the states millions of dollars in patient care for diabetes and other diseases related to the drug use. West Virginia seems reimbursement for payment for all medical costs, in addition to the over $70 million paid for the drug.

According to the lawsuit, studies have linked Zyprexa to diabetes since 1998. Sales representatives misled doctors about the safety and the efficacy of Zyprexa. Company advertisements deceptively understated risks and overstated its benefits. It also alleges that Lilly promoted "off label" prescriptions for a host of conditions, these included including anxiety, sleep disruption, mood swings, attention deficit hyperactivity and dementia:

"Lilly benefited from its misrepresentations and fraudulent conduct by gaining sales of Zyprexa at the expense of other, safe, effective drugs."

In July of 2006, the attorney general of Mississippi filed a lawsuit against Eli Lilly to recoup the ill-gotten gains from the promotion of off-label use of Zyprexa. The suit alleges that the company knew Zyprexa increased the risk of diabetes. In April of 2002, almost a year and a half before the company first issued warnings in the U.S., the labels in the United Kingdom and Japan were changed to include warnings of diabetes related injuries. Tim Balducci, Mississippi special assistant attorney general, asserted that the company targeted Mississippi because their Medicaid program does not signal when a doctor prescribes off label drugs.[20]

Drugging children

According to Attorney General Hood, 10% of Zyprexa patients have developed diabetes, some of whom are children, even though Zyprexa "has never been approved for, nor found to be effective, in the treatment of children."

Eli Lilly has doctors prescribing Zyprexa off-label to children and billing state Medicaid programs all over the country. In an August of 2004, the Archives of Pediatric Adolescent Medicine found the number of Tennessee children covered by TennCare being antipsychotics, nearly doubled in six years. In Texas, a review of prescription records for July and August of 2004, found that over 19,400 teenagers were prescribed antipsychotics billed to a publicly funded program. According to ACS-Heritage, a medical consulting firm hired by the state to investigate psychotropic drug use in children, almost 98% of the teens were prescribed off-label antipsychotics. In over half the cases, the dosage appeared to be inappropriately high.

Almost half the children did not appear to half a valid diagnosis warranted the use the drugs at all. One third were on two or more drugs.Almost half of the children did not appear to have a valid diagnosis warranting the use of the drugs, and one-third were on 2 or more drugs.

The March/April 2006 Journal of Ambulatory Pediatrics, led by Dr William Cooper at Vanderbilt University, analyzed data drawn from the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey and the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey. The survey found nearly 6 million outpatient visits to providers by children between the ages of 2 and 18, during which an antipsychotics were prescribed, between between 1995 and 2002. Nearly 80% occurred in physician]s offices; 14% in outpatient clinics and 9% in emergency rooms. According to the survey, there has been no increase in mental health disorders which could possible account for such increases in administering these medications. Side effects of Zyprexa are more common and severe in children than in adults. The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia recently reported that 19% of children newly diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, were being treated with new antipsychotics. The study pointed out that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) "has not approved any antipsychotic drugs for treating childhood schizophrenia; yet, clinicians routinely use medications for this disorder."[21]

2002 FDA reports prior to warning in 2003

Eli Lilly was well aware of serious health risks long before it issued U.S. warning labels for Zyprexa in 2003. According to a Duke University study published in the July 2002, FDA adverse event reports submitted on Zyprexa reported 289 cases of diabetes, with 225 patients reported as newly diagnosed. It also reported that 100 patients developed ketosis, a serious complication of diabetes. 22 people developed pancreatitis, a life threatening inflamation of the pancreas. The review identified 23 deaths, including a 15-year-old who died of necrotizing pancreatitis.[22]

Promoting Zyprexia for dementia

In December of 2007, the New York Times that company representatives were promoting Zyprexa with primary care physicians specifically for the off-label treatment of dementia.[23]

See also Zyprexa.


In 2006, a whistleblower reported in the New England Journal of Medicine that the company of initiated false reports of a shortage of the drug, Xigris. The public relations firm Belsito and Company was used to create the message that doctors were being forced to ration Xigris due to its high cost. [24]

Tobacco issues

In 1989, Eli Lilly started marketing an anti-depressant drug called fluoxetine (Prozac) that, in addition to elevating mood, was noted to help smokers quit. [25], [26]

Political contributions

Eli Lilly gave $2,345,224 to federal candidates in the 2010 election cycle through its political action committee (PAC) - 58% to Democrats, 41% to Republicans. [27]


The company spent $6,010,000 for lobbying in 2010. $1,562,000 of this total went to 13 outside lobbying firms and remaining amount was spent on in-house lobbying. [28]


Executives & board

Key executives

Board members

Executive Compensation

According to Fierce Pharma, Eli Lilly's CEO, Sidney Taurel, was the ninth top wage earner in 2007 among pharmaceutical CEOs.

  • Total Compensation: $13M
  • 2007 Revenue: $15.7B
  • 2006 Revenue: $18.6B
  • Change: -15%
"Taurel earned $1.7 million in base salary in 2007, up from $1.6 million in 2006. However, his overall pay was down, from $15.2 million in 2006 to $13 million last year. He pulled in $7.04 million in stock and options, $4 million in incentives, and $215.044 in other compensation, which included $107,105 for use of the company's aircraft."[32]
Key executives and 2006 pay: [33]          Options
Sidney Taurel - Chairman & CEO    $1,650,000    $3,190,000
John C. Lechleiter - COO    $1,110,000    $269,000
Derica W. Rice - CFO    $615,000    $57,000
Steven M. Paul - Executive VP, Science and Technology    $916,000    $59,000


Lilly Corporate Center
Indianapolis, Indiana 46285

Phone: 317-276-2000

Fax: 317-276-4878

Web address: http://www.lilly.com

Articles & sources

SourceWatch articles


  1. Company Description: Eli Lilly, Hoovers, accessed December 2009
  2. Key Eli Lilly and Company Financials, Hoovers, accessed April 2010
  3. Nick Surgey, "ExxonMobil Top Sponsor at ALEC Annual Meeting," Exposed by CMD, Center for Media and Democracy, July 27, 2016.
  4. [American Legislative Exchange Council, 2011 Conference Sponsors, conference brochure on file with CMD, August 11, 2011]
  5. 2008 - 4th Quarter {psychsearch.net Psychsearch], January 26, 2009
  6. Facility Reports and Information: Eli Lilly and Company, Indianapolis, IN, Stop Animal Exploitation NOW!, accessed October 2009
  7. Chris Halsne Monkey Boiled Alive At Research Lab, KIRO 7 Eyewitness News, February 2008
  8. What Is rBGH & rbST?, Sustainable Table, accessed December 2009
  9. Elanco Announces Acquisition of Posilac, PR Newswire, August 20, 2008
  10. IGF-1 and Milk Statement from FDA, Food and Drug Administration, accessed January 2009
  11. Dave Rietz Dangers of Milk and Dairy Products - The Facts, Rense.com, July 2002
  12. Dr. Michael Hanson rBGH & Monsanto's Recent IntimidationTactics, Organic Consumers Association, February 2003
  13. Robert Cohen Genetic Engineering: Paying The Price With Increased Cancer Deaths, The Notmilkman.com, accessed December 2009
  14. Jacob Goldstein, "Eli Lilly to Disclose Payments to Doctors," Wall Street Journal, September 24, 2008.
  15. Lilly CEO Lechleiter detailed registry plans at Indianapolis speech," Eli Lilly press release, September 24, 2008
  16. "Lilly Will Disclose Doctor Payments," O'Dwyer's PR Daily (sub req'd), September 24, 2008.
  17. Avery Johnson, "Under Criticism, Drug Maker Lilly Discloses Funding," Wall Street Journal (sub req'd), May 1, 2007.
  18. Laurie B. Cohen Lilly's 'Quick Cash' to Habitués Of Shelters Vanishes Quickly, Dow Jones & Co., 1997
  19. Ed Silverman Lilly To Take $1.4 Billion Charge For Zyprexa Probe, Pharmalot, October 21, 2008
  20. Evelyn Pringle The Public has a Right to Know About the Dangers of Zyprexa: The Secrets in Eli Lilly's Cabinet, Counterpunch, January 12 / 14, 2007
  21. Evelyn Pringle The Public has a Right to Know About the Dangers of Zyprexa: The Secrets in Eli Lilly's Cabinet, Counterpunch, January 12 / 14, 2007
  22. Evelyn Pringle The Public has a Right to Know About the Dangers of Zyprexa: The Secrets in Eli Lilly's Cabinet, Counterpunch, January 12 / 14, 2007
  23. Alex Berenson "Drug Files Show Maker Promoted Unapproved Use,", New York Times, December 18, 2006
  24. Richard Knox, "Report: Lilly Promoted Drug Under False Pretenses,", National Public Radio, October 18, 2006
  25. Drugs Show Promise Helping Smokers to Quit, Legacy Tobacco Documents Library, July 25, 1989
  26. New Drug Therapies are being Tested to Help Smokers Quit, Legacy Tobacco Documents Library, July 9, 1988
  27. 2010 PAC Summary Data, Open Secrets, accessed January 2011
  28. Eli Lilly lobbying expenses, Open Secrets, accessed January 2011
  29. Kathryn Dickey Karol, Freedom House, accessed September 2007.
  30. Company Description: Eli Lilly, Hoovers, accessed December 2009
  31. Investor Relations: Board of Directors, Eli Lilly, accessed April 2010
  32. Top 17 Paychecks in Big Pharma: Sidney Taurel, Fierce Pharma, May 19, 2008
  33. Eli Lilly Key Executives, Yahoo Finance, accessed September 2007.

External articles

External resources

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