Bayer CEO says faces 78 Trasylol lawsuits in U.S.

COLOGNE, Germany (Reuters) - Germany’s Bayer AG is facing 78 lawsuits in the United States linked to its Trasylol drug used to stem bleeding during open heart surgery, its chief executive said on Friday.

“We are not aware of any lawsuit outside the United States,” Werner Wenning told a shareholders’ meeting.

Bayer in November temporarily suspended global marketing of Trasylol after preliminary results from a Canadian study linked its use to a higher risk of kidney damage and death.

It said it would vigorously defend itself.

At the meeting, Wenning also said the market environment for its plastics unit could improve next year. Bayer expected lower profit from the unit this year.

Bayer shares rose 4.9 percent to 56.32 euros at 1200 GMT, outpacing a 1.6 percent gain in the German blue-chip DAX index after it published forecast-beating results on Thursday.

Reporting by Frank Siebelt; Editing by David Holmes