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DETROIT-Michigan has become the third state to dismiss all silicone breast implant lawsuits against Dow Chemical Co., the parent corporation of Dow Corning Corp.

The March 20 ruling by Wayne County Circuit Judge Robert J. Colombo Jr. will affect about 800 lawsuits filed against the company in Michigan.

Courts in New York and California in 1996 also dismissed Dow Chemical from all suits in those states (BI, Sept. 30, 1996).

Among the questions addressed and rejected in the Michigan proceeding was the plaintiffs' claim that Dow Corning relied on Dow Chemical to establish the safety of silicones for medical use.

But in granting Dow Chemical's motion for summary judgment, Judge Colombo found that Dow Chemical never tested silicones for human implantation.

Judge Colombo also found that Dow Chemical had made no misrepresentations or failed to disclose any facts in connection with the use of silicones for medical implantation.

Silicone breast implants were products of Dow Corning, a joint venture of Dow Chemical and Corning Inc.

Plaintiffs had amended their lawsuits against Dow Corning to include Dow Chemical when the Midland, Mich.-based Dow Corning filed for bankruptcy protection in May 1995 (BI, May 22, 1995).