America's pharmaceutical research and biotechnology companies are developing 851 medicines for diseases that disproportionately affect American women.
The medicines in the pipeline for women (either in clinical trials or awaiting review by the Food and Drug Administration) include:
- 139 for cancers affecting women, including 91 for breast cancer, 49 for ovarian cancer and nine for cervical cancer.
- 114 for arthritis/musculoskeletal disorders. Approximately 46 million Americans have some type of arthritis or related condition, and 60 percent of them are female.
- 64 for obstetric/gynecologic conditions.
- 110 for autoimmune diseases, which strike women three times more than men.
- 72 for depression and anxiety. Almost twice as many women as men suffer from these disorders.
- 83 for Alzheimer’s disease. Two-thirds (3.4 million) of the 5.4 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s today are women.
Among the potential new medicines in development for women:
- A medicine that uses nanotechnology to target a cytokine that plays a key role in the inflammatory process associated with rheumatoid arthritis.
- A first-in-class medicine in development for ovarian cancer that induces cell death and reduces cancer growth by inhibiting an enzyme responsible for cell division.
- A first-in-class medicine in development for migraine that selectively blocks transmission of pain signals to the brain.
- A new monoclonal antibody in development for lupus modulates B-cells that produce antibodies against the body’s own cells and tissue, causing the immune system to turn on itself.
In separate reports, PhRMA has found that researchers are working on 299 medicines for heart disease and stroke, which kill nearly a half-million women each year, and 98 medicines for lung cancer, the leading cancer killer of women (see page 60 for details).
America’s pharmaceutical research and biotechnology companies continue making exciting progress in the search for new cures and treatments for diseases of special concern to women. We live in an era when we understand more about the difference between the sexes and their healthcare needs. This knowledge is inspiring a continuing medical revolution that is bringing new hope to women around the world.