The Catalyst

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Ah, flu season will soon be upon us. I see my supermarket and local pharmacy signing people up for this year's flu shot. Here's a piece from one of my favorite nerd sites talking about this years' vaccine and why it is important to be vaccinated.

09.26.11 | By Jay Taylor, By Jay Taylor

Last week, my colleague Grady Forrer wrote about non-communicable diseases, which are posing new and growing threats to the developing world, including countries like India.

09.23.11 | By Kate Connors
Our digital team here has made some really moving videos of patients as part of our medicines in development reports, and I've always enjoyed sharing them on The Catalyst.
I'm always fascinated by the intersection of science and popular culture - in this case, serious research into finding new treatments to fight HIV/AIDS and gaming. I saw this interesting piece yesterday about how "gamers" helped University of Washington scientists "crack" an HIV/AIDS research puzzle. According to the piece:
09.22.11 | By Kate Connors

Recently, we had the chance to speak with Mary Grealy, president of the Healthcare Leadership Council (HLC), about the Medicare prescription drug benefit. Grealy is also the co-chair of Medicare Today, a program intended to help seniors understand and enroll in Medicare Part D.

09.21.11 | By Kate Connors

This week, an op-ed by John C. Lechleiter - the president, chairman and CEO of Eli Lilly and Company, one of PhRMA's member companies - highlighted what he calls "two success stories," one being the jobs supported in Indiana by the innovative life sciences sector there and the other being the "efficiency and satisfaction" associated with Medicare Part D, the prescription drug benefit.

Non-communicable disease (NCDs) "are what the human body will encounter if it lives long enough." Though the interesting and alarming story in this morning's Washington Post about NCDs doesn't say so, that may be some good news.
09.16.11 | By Amiee Adasczik

Biotechnology medicines are developed through biological processes using living cells or organisms, rather than the traditional chemical synthesis approach. The biotechnology medicines in the new report "Biotechnology Medicines in Development," are targeting autoimmune diseases, cancer, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases, psoriasis, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; hemophilia, glaucoma and many genetic disorders.

09.14.11 | By Kate Connors

My PhRMA colleague, Kendra Martello, was up on the Hill today, helping the U.S. Senate HELP Committee better understand what can be done to strengthen the medicine supply chain and make it even more secure (read our testimony and statement). See what she had to say.

We've come a long way in the fight against any number of diseases over the last 50 years.
09.13.11 | By Erin Mullen
I got a chance to see Contagion over the weekend and I have to say I liked it. As an emergency response professional with a medical background, I watched it with a critical eye to see how they portrayed how a real pandemic might unfold.
Leave it to a Stephen Colbert piece to tickle my funny bone this morning.
09.07.11 | By Kate Connors

I remember one newspaper column from nearly a year ago that has stuck with me: a physician boasting about his refusal to engage with biopharmaceutical research companies. He was proud of his decision, but he went so far as to confess that he doesn't always know about new medicines reaching the market.

I wonder how the patients he treated would have felt to hear that.

09.01.11 | By Kate Connors

Today, the FDA published the PDUFA-V performance goals letter, detailing the agreement that resulted from many months of technical negotiations between the biopharmaceutical industry and FDA, with unprecedented input from a variety of stakeholders, including patients and medical provider groups.