In a major setback for Johnson & Johnson, the first federal judge to rule on the reliability of plaintiffs’ experts testifying about whether baby powder causes ovarian cancer has admitted them in potentially more than 16,000 lawsuits.

On Monday, U.S. District Judge Freda Wolfson in New Jersey, who is overseeing the talcum powder multidistrict litigation against Johnson & Johnson, found that five scientific experts for the plaintiffs, two of whom have testified before Congress on talcum powder safety, could appear before juries.

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