The Intersection Among Torts, Science, Corporate Law, Insurance & Bankruptcy

UK’s “National Mesothelioma Audit report 2018 (for the audit period 2014–16)”

Posted in Uncategorized

As explained by Laurie Kazan Allen at the Ban Asbestos Secretariat, the UK’s annual mesothelioma audit report is out. It provides interesting but depressing data on the frequency of and types of mesothelioma treatments. The report also provides data on the frequency of mesothelioma in the UK, including age group data.

The Indiana Chapter of Medical Malpractice Claims

Posted in Medical Malpractice

A July 6, 2018 paper in SSRN, from experienced investigators, provides an apparently  notable body of evidence about medical malpractice claiming in Indiana.  It is:  Medical Malpractice Litigation and the Market for Representation: Evidence from Indiana. From this page of SSRN:


“Medical Malpractice Litigation and the Market for Representation: Evidence from Indiana

19 Pages Posted: 6 Jul 2018

David A. Hyman

Georgetown University Law Center

Jing Liu

University of Illinois College of Law

Bernard S. Black

Northwestern University – Pritzker School of LawNorthwestern University – Kellogg School of Management; European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

Date Written: June 29, 2018


How concentrated is the market for medical malpractice (med mal) legal representation, whether for plaintiffs or defendants? How often do plaintiffs proceed pro se, and with what results? Do successful lawyers start off with better cases to begin with or do they add more value to the cases — or both? Building on earlier work involving Illinois, we use a dataset of every med mal case filed in Indiana during 1976-2014 to identify the 3,324 plaintiff-side firms and 784 defense-side firms that handle these cases. We stratify these firms into three tiers and compare case outcomes with different tier match-ups. Finally, we use propensity score weighting to place some boundaries on the effect of representation on the chances of prevailing and on total recovery.

Keywords: pro se, represented, market for representation

Hyman, David A. and Liu, Jing and Black, Bernard S., Medical Malpractice Litigation and the Market for Representation: Evidence from Indiana (June 29, 2018). Available at SSRN:″

The Pennsylvania Chapter of Medical Malpractice “Tort Reform,” State Reserve Funds, and “Seizure” of the Money

Posted in Litigation Industry, Medical Malpractice

Yesterday, it was Wisconsin. Today, it’s yet another chapter in the saga of medical malpractice statutes lies in ongoing issues in Pennsylvania. In short, a state fund was created as part of “trot reform.”  However, now the fund is at risk of being used for other purposes, according to a July 5, 2018 post at TortsProf Blog  (and stories linked in it). In brief, the state legislature is trying to “seize” the money and use it for other purposes. Needless to say, the tactic is controversial and litigation is underway, as is described in the article and links within it.



“Russian mining firm puts Trump’s face on its asbestos products” – Really

Posted in Asbestos

“Trump seal of approval” from Guardian article and Facebook page for mine

An automated daily Google search for asbestos has produced yet another article I would never think to look for.  The headline states:

Russian mining firm puts Trump’s face on its asbestos products”

The article is from the Guardian, July 11, 2018, and appears to be a legitimate picture.  If not, someone has gone to great effort to create a fake. See

I do assume the “approval” is fake.

Also see the  same picture on the Facebook page for the Uralasbest mine –



The Wisconsin Chapter of Caps on Medical Malpractice Recoveries, With a Back Up Fund

Posted in Uncategorized

Caps on medical malpractice recoveries is one of the “tort reform” topics that’s been through notable change. A new chapter just took place in Wisconsin, with a win for those in favor of caps. The history and new chapter is summarized in a plaintiff friendly June 29, 2018 article at Daily Kos.  The Pop Tort picked up the article.

However, there is more to the story, including a Wisconsin back up fund that pays some economic costs. A June 27, 2018 Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article provides a broader view of the situation.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court web site has a landing page that includes links to briefs, oral agumment videos and the opinion in the case, which is Mayo.

“Signaling concern over industry funding, Congress presses for transparency at groups supporting NIH, CDC”

Posted in Litigation Industry, Sponsored Research

The U.S. could perhaps enter a new chapter in disclosures related to funding of research via NIH and CDC. STAT News explained the possible legislation in a July 2, 2018 article, below.

Signaling concern over industry funding, Congress presses for transparency at groups supporting NIH, CDC

Sponsored Writing: Economics, The Koch Brothers and George Mason University

Posted in Litigation Industry, Policy Issues

The media exchanges continue as to what the rules should or should not apply  as to disclosure and funding related to research and writing on economic topics of public interest. A new volley is from a Notre Dame professor (Philip Mirowski) who explores aspects  of  and consequences of the Koch Brothers funding for George Mason University. It is a June 25, 2018 article at the Institute for New Economic Thinking.

“Nightingale Health & UK Biobank announce major initiative to analyze 500,000 blood samples” in 30 months for 200 biomarkers

Posted in Cancer, Science

We continue to see increases in the the scale and pace of the development of molecular and genetic knowledge. A recent example arises from the announcement of serious plans for detailed analysis of 500,000 blood samples for 200 biomarkers. That’s impressive by itself.

Then, note the related factors. The new data will be related back to and added to the UK Biobank, which already has genetic information about many of the people. And, the data will be made public for research after 9 months of  exclusive use of the data for Nightingale.

The complete text of Nightingale’s June 21, 2018 press release provides more specifics on the project:

“Nightingale Health, the Finnish innovator of an internationally recognized blood biomarker technology for studying chronic diseases, will analyse the biomarker profiles of 500,000 blood samples from UK Biobank. The ground-breaking research initiative was announced today at the UK Biobank Scientific Conference 2018 in London.

Nightingale’s biomarker profiling technology will be used to analyse UK Biobank blood samples by measuring metabolic biomarkers that recent studies have found are predictive of future risk for heart disease, type 2 diabetes and many other common chronic diseases. Until recently, technological constraints and prohibitive costs have prevented the analysis of comprehensive metabolic data from large-scale biobank collections, but this process has been made viable by Nightingale’s technology, which measures over 200 metabolic biomarkers in a single blood test.

This initiative will further enrich the world’s most detailed public health database provided by the UK Biobank.

Professor Sir Rory Collins, UK Biobank’s Principal Investigator, said the commitment by Nightingale to perform these assays would allow researchers around the world to advance health research more quickly. He expects the combination of these biomarker data with the detailed health information that participants have already provided to generate many new insights. “We are delighted to see these novel blood sample analyses being done in UK Biobank,” said Professor Collins. “We already have an enormous amount of information about the lifestyles and genetic make-up of the participants in UK Biobank, as well as about their health, and are currently conducting imaging studies of their brains, hearts and bodies. Providing the medical research community with these additional high quality metabolic biomarker data on such a large scale will enhance discovery science and population science, providing opportunities to benefit patient care and public health.”

“Analysing 500,000 blood samples from a single study with Nightingale’s comprehensive biomarker profiling technology allows us to uncover metabolic signatures that reflect a risk for future disease onset, as well as their underlying risk factors. We anticipate this detailed molecular readout of the health state, combining both lifestyle and genetic makeup, will result in a wealth of scientific applications from the research community. This will be relevant not only to the British population but also yield ground-breaking science and enhanced drug development opportunities with a global public health impact,” said Dr. Peter Würtz, Scientific Director and Founder, Nightingale Health.

Nightingale Health’s technology has been previously used to analyse more than 500,000 blood samples from over 200 cohort studies and clinical trials around the globe, with more than 150 peer-reviewed publications showcasing how the detailed metabolic biomarker data provide novel insights into health and disease.

“Nightingale’s mission is strongly linked to scientific evidence generation. This means working with world-leading institutions and biosample collections to continuously improve the understanding of health and disease. Our aim is to translate this understanding into improved early prediction of diabetes and cardiovascular diseases, achieving better healthcare for everyone. Our initiative with the UK Biobank demonstrates Nightingale’s unwavering commitment towards supporting innovative medical science carried out by researchers from across the world,” said Teemu Suna, CEO and Founder, Nightingale Health.

The initiative corresponds to over 10 million EUR investment in UK Biobank and will be funded by Nightingale Health, with analyses of UK Biobank samples being performed at Nightingale’s laboratory in Finland. In line with the founding principles of the UK Biobank, this metabolomic data will be incorporated back into the UK Biobank’s resource following a 9 months exclusivity period for Nightingale Health and made openly available to the scientific community.


Media contact:

Teemu Suna, CEO & Founder 
Nightingale Health 
+358 40 196 1669

Nightingale Health:

Nightingale Health Ltd. is the innovator of an internationally recognized NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance) metabolomics technology, supplying biomarker analysis services for human serum, plasma, urine, CSF and umbilical cord blood samples. By measuring biomarkers from multiple pathways in a single experiment, Nightingale equips biomedical researchers with comprehensive insights into the effects of lifestyle factors and future disease risk, accelerating breakthroughs in precision medicine. The company is investing and working towards integrating its technology into clinical practice to bring about precision medicine, helping to empower patients to follow their own well-being and take proactive steps to stay healthy.

For more information, please visit

UK Biobank:

Andrew Trehearne, Head of Communications 
UK Biobank 
+44 1865 743960

About UK Biobank

UK Biobank is the most comprehensive resource of its kind in the world. Its 500,000 participants have provided information about their health, well-being and lifestyle, as well as blood and other biological samples for long-term storage and analysis. In addition, they have agreed to have their health followed through medical records for many years. Scientists from around the world are able to use the resource for research intended to improve the prevention and treatment of a wide range of common disorders. UK Biobank is funded by the Medical Research Council, Wellcome Trust, Department of Health, Welsh Government, Scottish Government, British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research U.K. and Diabetes U.K.