Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP Files Class Action Suit Against AstraZeneca plc

·4 min read

Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP (https://www.rgrdlaw.com/cases-astrazenecaplc-class-action-lawsuit.html) today announced that it filed a class action on behalf of an institutional investor seeking to represent purchasers of AstraZeneca plc (NASDAQ:AZN) American Depositary Shares ("ADSs") between May 21, 2020 and November 20, 2020, inclusive (the "Class Period"). This action was filed in the Southern District of New York and is captioned Monroe County Employees’ Retirement System v. AstraZeneca plc, No. 21-cv-00722.

The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 permits any investor who purchased AstraZeneca ADSs during the Class Period to seek appointment as lead plaintiff in the AstraZeneca class action lawsuit. A lead plaintiff is generally the movant with the greatest financial interest in the relief sought by the putative class who is also typical and adequate of the putative class. A lead plaintiff acts on behalf of all other class members in directing the AstraZeneca class action lawsuit. The lead plaintiff can select a law firm of its choice to litigate the AstraZeneca class action lawsuit. An investor’s ability to share in any potential future recovery of the AstraZeneca class action lawsuit is not dependent upon serving as lead plaintiff. If you wish to serve as lead plaintiff in the AstraZeneca class action lawsuit, you must move the Court no later than 60 days from today. If you wish to discuss the AstraZeneca class action lawsuit or have any questions concerning this notice or your rights or interests, please contact plaintiff’s counsel, Brian E. Cochran of Robbins Geller, at 800/449-4900 or 619/231-1058 or via e-mail at bcochran@rgrdlaw.com. You can view a copy of the complaint as filed at https://www.rgrdlaw.com/cases-astrazenecaplc-class-action-lawsuit.html.

The AstraZeneca class action lawsuit charges AstraZeneca and certain of its officers and directors with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. AstraZeneca is one of the largest biopharmaceutical companies in the world and was one of the early front-runners in the race to develop a COVID-19 vaccine. In April 2020, the Company partnered with Oxford University to develop a potential recombinant adenovirus vaccine for the virus, later dubbed AZD1222. The complaint alleges that defendants misrepresented facts regarding the Company’s ongoing AZD1222 clinical trials and concealed problems that had arisen in the trials, including a dosing error which had been discovered early on by the Company but not disclosed to investors.

On November 23, 2020, AstraZeneca issued a release announcing the results of an interim analysis of its ongoing trial for AZD1222. The announcement immediately began to raise questions among analysts and industry experts. AstraZeneca disclosed that the interim analysis involved two smaller scale trials in disparate locales (the United Kingdom and Brazil) that, for unexplained reasons, employed two different dosing regimens. One clinical trial provided patients a half dose of AZD1222 followed by a full dose, while the other trial provided two full doses. Counterintuitively, AstraZeneca claimed that the half dosing regimen was substantially more effective at preventing COVID-19 at 90% efficacy than the full dosing regimen, which had achieved just 62% efficacy.

In the days that followed, additional revelations were made regarding problems with AstraZeneca’s AZD1222 clinical trials. For example, the differing dosing regimens were revealed to be due to a manufacturing error rather than trial design. Also, the half-strength dose had not been tested in people over the age of 55 – despite the fact that this population was the most vulnerable to COVID-19. Moreover, certain trial participants received their second dose later than originally planned. U.S. regulators stated that if AstraZeneca could not clearly explain the discrepancies in its trial results, the results would most likely not be sufficient for approval for commercial sale in the United States.

As negative news reports continued to reveal previously undisclosed problems and flaws in AstraZeneca’s clinical trials for AZD1222, the price of AstraZeneca ADSs fell to $52.60 by market close on November 25, 2020, a 5% decline over three trading days in response to adverse news on abnormally high volume.

The plaintiff is represented by Robbins Geller, which has extensive experience in prosecuting investor class actions including actions involving financial fraud.

Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP is one of the world’s leading law firms representing investors in securities litigation. With 200 lawyers in 9 offices, Robbins Geller has obtained many of the largest securities class action recoveries in history. For seven consecutive years, ISS Securities Class Action Services has ranked the Firm in its annual SCAS Top 50 Report as one of the top law firms in the world in both amount recovered for shareholders and total number of class action settlements. Robbins Geller attorneys have helped shape the securities laws and have recovered tens of billions of dollars on behalf of aggrieved victims. Beyond securing financial recoveries for defrauded investors, Robbins Geller also specializes in implementing corporate governance reforms, helping to improve the financial markets for investors worldwide. Robbins Geller attorneys are consistently recognized by courts, professional organizations and the media as leading lawyers in the industry. Please visit http://www.rgrdlaw.com for more information.

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Contacts

Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP
Brian E. Cochran, 800-449-4900
bcochran@rgrdlaw.com