Review: 'Through the Shadowlands’ describes Julie Rehmeyer's ME/CFS Odyssey
I should note at the outset that this review is based on an audio version of the galleys and the epilogue from the finished work. Julie Rehmeyer sent me the final version as a PDF, but for some reason my text to voice software (Kurzweil) had issues with it. I understand that it is...
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Forbes: The cost of developing has increased to about $5 billion per drug(!). Where will this end?

Discussion in 'Other Health News and Research' started by Waverunner, Aug 12, 2013.

  1. Waverunner

    Waverunner Senior Member

    Less and less drugs get developed and approved per year. R&D cost increased tremendously over the last years. Developing a new drug, that gets approved on the market is connected to about $5 billion in investment. Who can afford this? Smartphones, computers and TVs get cheaper and better every year, while the medical field is collapsing under cost. What are the reasons? There probably are several.

    A consequence however is, that pharma companies are not interested in finding cures because it's a lot easier to only improve the concept of already working drugs. IBD is a perfect example. Instead of looking at the microbiome or taking into account, that Crohn's patients suffer from massive viral infections in their intestines, the main aim of all developed drugs is to reduce inflammation. While this may reduce symptoms and improve barrier function, it will never cure you of the disease. Moreover you are forced to take these drugs for the rest of your life. It started with steroids after WW2, then came 5-ASA and currently we are at biological therapies. Vedolizumab will be next. These drugs cost huge amounts of money but none of them are directed at treating a cause. All they do is suppress inflammation.

    There’s one factor that, as much as anything else, determines how many medicines are invented, what diseases they treat, and, to an extent, what price patients must pay for them: the cost of inventing and developing a new drug, a cost driven by the uncomfortable fact than 95% of the experimental medicines that are studied in humans fail to be both effective and safe.
    A new analysis conducted at Forbes puts grim numbers on these costs. A company hoping to get a single drug to market can expect to have spent $350 million before the medicine is available for sale. In part because so many drugs fail, large pharmaceutical companies that are working on dozens of drug projects at once spend $5 billion per new medicine.
    “This is crazy. For sure it’s not sustainable,” says Susan Desmond-Hellmann, the chancellor at UCSF and former head of development at industry legend Genentech, where she led the testing of cancer drugs like Herceptin and Avastin. “Increasingly, while no one knows quite what to do instead, any businessperson would look at this and say, ‘You can’t make a business off this. This is not a good investment.’ I say that knowing that this has been the engine of wonderful things.”
    A 2012 article in Nature Reviews Drug Discovery says the number of drugs invented per billion dollars of R&D invested has been cut in half every nine years for half a century. Reversing this merciless trend has caught the attention of the U.S. government. Francis Collins, the director of the National Institutes of Health, in 2011 started a new National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences to remove the roadblocks that keep new drugs from reaching patients.
    “One point your numbers tell you is how horrendous the failure rate is and how that causes the cost of success to be so much higher,” says Collins. “We would love to contribute to making that failure rate lower, to identifying those bottlenecks and to trying to reengineer the pipeline so if failures happen, they happen very early and not in later stages where the costs are higher.”
    The good news is that a close look at the data we collected provides some hints as to how to improve the industry’s hit rate – and how individual companies, without lowering the overall cost of developing a drug, can at least reduce their own expenses. Some companies – like Bristol-Myers Squibb, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, and Aegerion – do far better than their peers...
    Sixty-six of the 98 companies studied launched only one drug this decade. The costs borne by these companies can be taken as a rough estimate of what it takes to develop a single drug. The median cost per drug for these singletons was $350 million. But for companies that approve more drugs, the cost per drug goes up – way up – until it hits $5.5 billion for companies that have brought to market between eight and 13 medicines over a decade...
    Sasha and Ema like this.
  2. *GG*

    *GG* senior member

    Concord, NH
    It will end in Bankruptcy, no turning back, Banana Republic here we come!

  3. PhoenixBurger

    PhoenixBurger Senior Member

    "Where will this end?"

    When human greed ends.
    Valentijn likes this.

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