Jump to content

Federal Government Helps Big Pharmaceutical Companies!

Recommended Posts

You can bet it won't be for 'MMJ' research.



Federal Research Center Will Help Develop Medicines



Published: January 22, 2011

The Obama administration has become so concerned about the slowing pace of new drugs coming out of the pharmaceutical industry that officials have decided to start a billion-dollar government drug development center to help create medicines.


Enlarge This ImageSUB-DRUG-articleInline.jpg

Jennifer S. Altman for The New York Times

Creating a drug development center is a signature effort of Dr. Francis S. Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health.





Readers' Comments

Share your thoughts.

The new effort comes as many large drug makers, unable to find enough new drugs, are paring back research. Promising discoveries in illnesses like depression and Parkinson’s that once would have led to clinical trials are instead going unexplored because companies have neither the will nor the resources to undertake the effort.


The initial financing of the government’s new drug center is relatively small compared with the $45.8 billion that the industry estimates it invested in research in 2009. The cost of bringing a single drug to market can exceed $1 billion, according to some estimates, and drug companies have typically spent twice as much on marketing as on research, a business model that is increasingly suspect.


The National Institutes of Health has traditionally focused on basic research, such as describing the structure of proteins, leaving industry to create drugs using those compounds. But the drug industry’s research productivity has been declining for 15 years, “and it certainly doesn’t show any signs of turning upward,” said Dr. Francis S. Collins, director of the institutes.


The job of the new center, to be called the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, is akin to that of a home seller who spruces up properties to attract buyers in a down market. In this case the center will do as much research as it needs to do so that it can attract drug company investment.


That means that in some cases, the center will use one of the institutes’ four new robotic screeners to find chemicals that affect enzymes and might lead to the development of a drug or a cure. In other cases, the center may need to not only discover the right chemicals but also perform animal tests to ensure that they are safe and even start human trials to see if they work. All of that has traditionally been done by drug companies, not the government.


“None of this is intended to be competitive with the private sector,” Dr. Collins said. “The hope would be that any project that reaches the point of commercial appeal would be moved out of the academic support line and into the private sector.”


Whether the government can succeed where private industry has failed is uncertain, officials acknowledge, but they say doing nothing is not an option. The health and human services secretary, Kathleen Sebelius, sent a letter to Congress on Jan. 14 outlining the plan to open the new drug center by October — an unusually rapid turnaround for an idea first released with little fanfare in December.


Creating the center is a signature effort of Dr. Collins, who once directed the agency’s Human Genome Project. Dr. Collins has been predicting for years that gene sequencing will lead to a vast array of new treatments, but years of effort and tens of billions of dollars in financing by drug makers in gene-related research has largely been a bust.


As a result, industry has become far less willing to follow the latest genetic advances with expensive clinical trials. Rather than wait longer, Dr. Collins has decided that the government can start the work itself.


“I am a little frustrated to see how many of the discoveries that do look as though they have therapeutic implications are waiting for the pharmaceutical industry to follow through with them,” he said.


Dr. Collins’s ability to conceive and create such a center in a few short months would have been impossible for most of his predecessors, who had nice offices but little power. But Congress in recent years has invested real budgetary and administrative authority in the director’s office, and Dr. Collins is the first to fully use these new powers.


Under the plan, more than $700 million in research projects already under way at various institutes and centers would be brought together at the new center. But officials hope that the prospect of finding new drugs will lure Congress into increasing the center’s financing well beyond $1 billion.


Hopes of new money may be optimistic. Republicans in the House have promised to cut the kind of discretionary domestic spending that supports the health institutes, and officials are already bracing for significant cuts this year. But Dr. Collins has hinted that he is willing to cannibalize other parts of the health institutes to bring more resources to the new center.

Edited by greenbuddha
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dr Collins,


" Why dont you do some research on the Cannabis, if you are just waiting around, looking for Miracle Drugs. That would be much more practical and useful to the largest population " ?


We Need more Drugs ? wtf ?


What about keeping them out of our water supply ? ? ?

Edited by solabeirtan
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dr Collins,


" Why dont you do some research on the Cannabis, if you are just waiting around, looking for Miracle Drugs. That would be much more practical and useful to the largest population " ?


We Need more Drugs ? wtf ?


What about keeping them out of our water supply ? ? ?

Yah, the excreted pharmaceuticals that are processed into city water is another great American uncontrolled experiment on the general population.

POE, purity of essence....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The pharmaceutical lobby spent $328 million dollars fighting the Health-Care Reform Act rudely and disrespectfully refereed to as Obamacare. why? Because if its implemented the loop holes that allow billions of dollars to be (some shuffled into politicians pockets) wasted will be closed.


We get big pharma out of DC and we get legalized cannabis across the country for recreational and medicinal use for the billions in taxes it will generate mostly. Not that cannabis is showing great promise in many areas of health sciences or that industrial hemp could lead our country into an agricultural renaissance and help create truly green jobs by the thousands in many states.


Not to mention the tens of thousands of items that hemp produces food,fuel, and fiber are just three that we can export instead of sending $500 million American dollars a year to other countries most who do not consider us friends but will take our money.


Why doesn't Dc want to have an open honest debate about cannabis and rely on only independent studies from reputable laboratories or universities and then put it up for a nation wide vote. Many industrialized countries cultivate hemp to create a revenue stream China is the largest producer and exporter we are the largest importer of Chinese hemp products at the tune of $200 million American dollars plus a year.


Why isn't our money staying here?! Why are we providing jobs in other countries Americans can and should be doing here!









Edited by David1946
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...