Merck testimony struck in latest courtroom fracas

The judge hearing the second Vioxx case handed Merck another setback on Friday, striking the testimony of a company researcher--and Merck's first defense witness--after saying that a review of his remarks sickened her. Judge Carol Higbee said that Dr. Briggs Morrison was not an expert on the trials he discussed and that Merck had seriously misled her over what he would discuss. Merck's attorney and the judge then engaged in a heated exchange with the judge refusing to declare a mistrial for the sixth time.

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