A federal judge in California has ruled that a multi-billion dollar whistleblower case against biotech giant Celgene Corp. can proceed to a jury trial. The case alleges that Celgene marketed two drugs for unapproved uses, causing the government to pay for hundreds of thousands of “off-label” prescriptions.

In an opinion issued Wednesday night, Judge George H. King, of the Central District of California, wrote that former employee Beverly Brown had provided solid evidence to support her claim that Celgene promoted Thalomid and Revlimid for use in cancer patients. The FDA had approved the drugs only for other purposes, and the company was not permitted to pitch it to doctors for unapproved, or off-label, uses.

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