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04.25.11 | By Kate Connors

In today's Wall Street Journal, reporter Amy Dockser Marcus writes about how an online community called PatientsLikeMe helped to inspire a clinical trial of lithium to treat amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), otherwise known as Lou Gehrig's disease. The trial, published in Sunday's Nature Biotechnology journal, was inconclusive.


There was a good oped Friday in Xconomy by PhRMA Board Chairman Christopher Viehbacher and PhRMA's President and CEO John Castellani.

04.22.11 | By Kate Connors

Any prescription medicines that you have at home come with specific storage instructions: keep away from light, perhaps, or store in the refrigerator. But what happens if you happen to be, oh, staffing a mission to the International Space Station?


An interesting report from the World Health Organization found that cases of measles are on the rise across Europe.


I've been watching a fascinating series on the PBS NewsHour focusing on the challenges of autism. The series, entitled Autism Now, is hosted by former news anchor Robert McNeil who tells the story of his autistic grandson.

04.21.11 | By Kate Connors

Earlier this week, a joint plan was outlined by the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), where key strategies were developed that address preventing prescription drug abuse nationwide. A full outline of the plan can be found here.


As we've noted in previous blog posts, counterfeit medicines are becoming more prevalent around the world. Many foreign countries have been experiencing an influx of counterfeit drugs because they have a weaker regulatory regime compared to the U.S. and/or open drug supply system. In the U.S., however, our closed drug supply system has helped shield patients from the dangerous worldwide counterfeit medicines epidemic.

04.20.11 | By Kate Connors

I admit that this blog post comes to you a few days late. As I read through coverage of PhRMA's annual meeting, this article in The Newark Star-Ledger caught my eye.


With PhRMA's annual meeting completed, everyone here is getting back into their more normal routines. So, I thought I'd start the week talking about a piece in today's New York Times Health Section.

04.15.11 | By Kate Connors

An interview with The Catalyst and Orexigen CEO Mike Narachi

1. Talk about what it is for a company like Orexigen to become a member of PhRMA?

We're obviously excited because our goals align so closely with those of PhRMA. As a small company with a late-stage product, we understand the importance of creating an environment that fosters innovation, and becoming a member of PhRMA -- a group that has made innovation such a priority -- was a natural fit.


Day Two
[10:05 a.m.]

Two Women Scientists Honored with PhRMA's 2011 Discoverers Award

There are a lot of interesting discussions and events during PhRMA's Annual Meeting, but one regular event is always special. That is the annual awarding of PhRMA's Discoverers Award.

04.14.11 | By Kate Connors

This is a guest post from Brian Reid, Director at WCG.

Judging from the agenda, the PhRMA Annual Meeting was about leaders: yesterday's Session started with an introduction by PhRMA chairman and sanofi-aventis CEO Chris Viehbacher, followed by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski and others. All spoke about the importance of investment and the need to have clear, thoughtful regulation to nurture that innovation.

04.14.11 | By Kate Connors

[11:00 a.m.] At the PhRMA Annual Meeting, we set up a "listening gallery," a wall on which participants were invited to share their thoughts on what innovation truly is.

Here are a few samples.

Innovation is:

04.13.11 | By Kate Connors

Often on The Catalyst, Grady and I refer our readers to the PhRMA Chart Pack, a great source of information about the biopharmaceutical research sector.

Today, in conjunction with this week's annual meeting, we're releasing some additional useful material - PhRMA's annual industry profile.