Federal Development Prioritizes New Drug Development

Many drug developments that look efficient during laboratory tests never make it to retail or pharmacies for some reason. The National Institutes of Health wishes to address this unfortunate issue in the hope of improving this area of the medical industry.

new drug discoveryThe National Institutes of Health (NIH) is establishing a new government center in Washington to aid in the improvement of the drug industry. The advisers of the said organization strongly suggested the idea last December to promote new drug discoveries for humans that were conducted in government accredited laboratories.

As the years go by, fewer pharmaceutical companies are willing to risk money and time to develop a new drug from scratch. The early stage of developing a new drug is referred to as the ‘Valley of Death’ in the industry because it involves high risk of loss. Just think, 99.9 percent of this early phase may result to working on therapeutic compounds that may turn out to be an unapproved drug.

Bringing a single new drug to the market can cost at least $1 billion – a risk that most companies are hesitant to take. Furthermore, even more money will be lost for marketing the drug once it gains FDA approval.

The proposed new center by the NIH should serve as the place for preclinical groundwork. They plan to name it as the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences. The center shall be where every promising compound will be tested. The NIH will then hand down the information to respective private companies that are responsible in refining the compounds into new drugs.

The new center will not be a threat or a competition to drug companies that develop medications for various illnesses. Its focus shall lie on neglected drugs for various diseases, drugs that are no longer interesting for other companies.

Focuses of the New Drug Development Center

  • Work on improving the various processes of therapeutic development
  • Serve as the translational medicine department’s central access for resources, tools and knowledge
  • Foster in strengthening the relationship between the government, non-profit groups, academia and venture capitalists
  • Offer incentives for exchange of scientific information and the announcement of failed results

The new center should cost around $700 million to build and will focus on two different programs – Therapeutics and Rare and Neglected Diseases Program and Rapid Access to Interventional Development. However, it may also cover a number of agency programs that are related to the drug industry.

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