Week In Review: When Minor Discoveries Make All The Difference

Week In Review: When Minor Discoveries Make All The Difference

04.06.13 | By Kaelan Hollon

Have you ever considered what it took to develop medicines, like aspirin, that we use regularly? It was far from an overnight discovery. The medicines we sometimes take for granted are the result of decades of intense research and development. Conditions that could historically permanently debilitate patients, such as cancer and tuberculosis, are now manageable, and as the PhRMA 2013 Annual Meeting approaches, several guest posts discussed incremental innovation and addressed the past, present, and future of biomedical innovation. Eric A. Utt, Ph.D., Director of Worldwide Policy for Pfizer, commented on the motivation behind medical innovation. Like any invention, medical discoveries take years and sometimes decades. Scientific advancements do not occur in a vacuum and they depend on previous research and successes and failures. Dr. Utt emphasized that with medical discoveries, there is rarely a "eureka moment" when a great discovery is instantly translated from idea to life-saving product. Building on this idea, Thomas F. Goss, Senior Vice President at Boston Healthcare Associates, discussed rheumatoid arthritis treatment. The full clinical value of the treatment for rheumatoid arthritis was realized well past initial regulatory approval. Since the 1990's, our understanding of how to use a combination of drugs to treat the disease has evolved, and we are now able to build on previous research and studies more effectively. To learn more about what industry experts are saying about innovation and medical progress, tune in live April 11 and 12 during the PhRMA 2013 Annual Meeting. Our panelists will address a number of healthcare and innovation topics, and we will be live tweeting from the event. Use the hashtag #PhRMA13 to be part of the conversation.

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