Jury awards record-setting $110.5 million in baby powder lawsuit

NEW YORK - DECEMBER 16: Johnson & Johnson's products are seen December 16, 2004 in New York. Johnson & Johnson's agreed to buy Guidant Corp, a defibrillator manufacturer for $25.4 billion. (Photo Illustration by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)

ST. LOUIS — A St. Louis jury has awarded a Virginia woman a record-setting $110.5 million in the latest lawsuit alleging that using Johnson & Johnson’s baby powder caused cancer.

The jury ruling Thursday night for 62-year-old Louis Slemp, of Wise, Virginia, comes after three previous St. Louis juries awarded a total of $197 million to plaintiffs who made similar claims.

Slemp was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2012. It has since spread to her liver. She blamed her cancer on her use of the company’s talcum-containing products for more than 40 years. About 2,000 women nationwide have filed similar suits over concerns about health damage caused by extended talcum powder use.

Johnson & Johnson said in a statement that it would appeal and disputed the scientific evidence behind the plaintiffs’ allegations.