[Ip-health] U.S. takes step to government drug development center
jdr at ramoslink.info
Wed Dec 8 06:30:48 PST 2010
By Maggie Fox, Health and Science Editor
WASHINGTON | Tue Dec 7, 2010
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. government took a big step toward
getting more involved in developing drugs on Tuesday, when advisers to
the National Institutes of Health recommending setting up a new center
to do it.
The new National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences would do
some of the dirty work that pharmaceutical companies cannot or will not
do, by taking promising but uncertain basic scientific findings out of
the test tube and finding ways to use them to treat people, NIH Director
Dr. Francis Collins said.
NIH has never done anything quite like this," Collins said in a
"We are asking how can we improve the success of getting the ideas from
an early stage to a successful clinical trial, because there is a
terrible failure rate right now."
The pharmaceutical company lobbying group PhRMA estimates that out of
every 5,000 compounds screened for their potential to become drugs, only
250 make it out of the lab and into animals and only one finally gets
approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
PhRMA says it can take as long as 15 years and cost more than $800
million to get there.
NIH has long helped develop new drugs -- Taxol, a cancer drug made from
tree bark, started development in a National Cancer Institute lab.
Collins said the new institute would not interfere with these efforts
but would instead be a place to coordinate them better.
NIH's Scientific Management Review Board voted on Tuesday to recommend
establishment of the new center -- something Collins immediately
embraced, as it was an idea he has been pushing since he took over in
Joana Ramos, MSW
Cancer Resources& Advocacy
Seattle WA USA
More information about the Ip-health