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GlaxoSmithKline Reuters

UK drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline has settled a dispute with several US states which alleged that the company promoted its medicines for unapproved uses.

The company has paid $105m (£62.7m, €77m) to settle the allegations by 44 US states and the District of Columbia that the company mis-promoted three drugs. The drugs are asthma medication Advair and anti-depressants Paxil and Wellbutrin.

"These are historic matters - they relate back to the federal government settlement in 2012 so some of these events are as long ago as 14 years," the company said in a statement without admitting any wrongdoing.

It noted that the recent one is similar to the $3bn record settlement reached with the federal government in 2012.

GSK was accused of illegally promoting Advair for use by mild asthma patients and the anti-depressants Paxil and Wellbutrin for use by children and teenagers without approval from the US Food and Drug Administration.

As part of the settlement, the company is not allowed to give financial incentives to its sales staff and is prohibited from paying doctors to speak about its products during conferences. It is required to continue its "Patient First Programme" for five years.

GSK noted that it has undertaken the reforms a long time ago.

"This settlement requires GSK to pay a significant penalty and imposes strong new rules designed to prevent future misrepresentations of GSK products," said California attorney general Kamala Harris in a statement.

California's portion of the settlement is the largest of any state at $7m.

"GlaxoSmithKline put its business interests ahead of what was best for vulnerable patients," Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan said.

"Consumers shouldn't have to wonder whether financial incentives are negatively influencing their medical care," said Michigan Attorney General, Bill Schuette.

The settlement comes as GSK is facing investigation into its marketing practices in countries including China and the UK.

In China, the UK's largest pharma company is already under investigation by authorities in a separate bribery probe. Meanwhile, Britain's Serious Fraud Office is probing GSK's commercial practices.