Companies that made and sold automotive friction materials — brakes and clutches — have invoked Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals Inc., 509 U.S. 579 (1993) (or Frye v. U.S., 293 F. 1013 (D.C. App. 1923)) in attempts to preclude plaintiffs’ evidence that the asbestos, once used in such products, contributes to causing disease.

These defendants rely upon what they characterize as undisputed epidemiological evidence, purportedly showing that there is no significant increased risk associated with exposure to friction products. Their position is that such epidemiology is conclusive and that, without contrary epidemiology showing an increased risk, plaintiffs’ causation evidence cannot pass muster under Daubert.

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