Merial, Bayer end lawsuits over advertising

Published on January 15, 2006
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Merial and Bayer Animal Health have agreed to retract certain advertising claims to settle lawsuits that they recently filed against one another.

Bayer has agreed to retract materials claiming that an Auburn University study proved its K9 Advantix to be superior to Merial's Frontline Plus at preventing transmission of Borrelia burgdorferi.

Bayer had distributed the promotional materials at three veterinary conventions and as advertisements in four veterinary publications. The conventions were the AVMA Annual Convention, Central Veterinary Conference, and Wild West Veterinary Conference. The publications were the September 2005 issues of DVM Newsmagazine, Veterinary Forum, Veterinary Economics, and Veterinary Technician.

Merial filed suit over the Bayer materials in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia.

Bayer filed suit in the United States District Court for the District of Kansas over claims in Merial educational materials.

Merial has agreed to retract materials claiming that resistance is a problem with the chloronicotinyl category of flea-control products—which would include imidacloprid, the active ingredient in Bayer's Advantage.

Merial distributed the materials as part of a Merial EDU workbook accompanying the April 2005 issue of DVM Newsmagazine. Merial printed a new workbook to accompany the July 2005 issue.

Merial and Bayer entered into a consent decree to settle the lawsuits, and both companies sent letters of apology to veterinarians.