The 2013 eHealth week concluded yesterday, after 3 days of events that brought together industry partners, healthcare professionals, and decision-makers from across Europe to discuss the current possibilities and challenges facing eHealth. The event also offered the opportunity to celebrate eHealth success stories and raise awareness around the eHealth movement.
Research & Innovation
Science has always been at the core of what the pharmaceutical industry is about. The industry has consistently invested in science, knowing that the fruits of R&D can add years to life, and life to years. With fast developing technologies such as epigenetics, which looks at how particular genes vary in their expression, as well as faster and cheaper access to the human genome, the reality of leveraging “the new science” to develop medicines personalised to the individual is on the cusp of being realised. This does not mean that traditional R&D has ceased to bear fruit. Indeed, 2011 saw a small but high quality number of new medicines being made available including two ground-breaking treatments for advanced melanoma and two new treatments for Hepatitis C.
Europe has continued to increase in importance as a location for investment in pharmaceutical R&D over the past decade. In 2011, the industry invested Euros 27.5 billion in R&D in Europe. However, the combination of rising R&D costs, complex research areas, and burdensome regulatory requirements, make for a challenging environment for healthcare innovation in Europe in the coming years. Europe’s ability to remain a leader in biomedical innovation depends on regulators, industry and civil society developing new models of collaboration to research areas of unmet need.
Europe’s clinical trials regulatory framework is a key challenge. It is fragmented and does not currently take account of new tools such as biomarkers, or that old medicines can be repurposed for new treatments as a result of new research. A streamlined clinical trials framework in the EU will be key to encourage research and innovation.
Use of animals in research and testing is a highly sensitive, yet vital part of the long and complex process creating new medicines. Our industry has focused its efforts into replacing, reducing and refining – the 3Rs – its usage of animals. Constant search for better and more predictive research tools and pathways also impact the 3Rs impacts. Please, also refer to the following webpage : Animal Welfare and the European Pharmaceutical industry - explain, track and talk.
The European pharmaceutical industry is an enthusiastic supporter of European Commission’s proposals for a new EU Framework for Research and Innovation – Horizon 2020. The programme is designed to create a knowledge-based economy in Europe capable of competing on a global scale over time. Out of the total budget of €80 billion, €9 billion has been earmarked to address major concerns shared by all Europeans in the field of health, demographic change and well-being. At the heart of the proposed programme is an emphasis on public private partnerships.
The Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) is a unique collaborative venture – a public private partnership - between the European Commission (EC) and European pharmaceutical companies, SMEs, regulators, academia and patient groups. With a total budget of € 2 billion, IMI is the world’s largest public-private partnership in life science funded jointly by the European Union (€1 billion in cash) and EFPIA (€1 billion in in-kind contributions). Projects cover the entire value chain, from discovery, through preclinical and clinical research, to Health Technology Assessments (HTAs) and pharmacovigilance. In 2011, companies agreed to pool knowledge and co-fund research under the IMI programme in the vital areas of depression, rheumatoid arthritis, pain and antibiotic resistance.
Fundamental to the industry’s business model is intellectual property rights (IPR). Traditionally, the EU has had a robust framework of protection of IPRs in line with the EU’s 2020 vision of a knowledge- based society.
Crisis is one word that has been used to describe the current state of research and development in the field of brain-related disorders.
Today marks World Asthma Day, which introduced a new subtheme this year – It’s Time to Control Asthma. The Global Initiative for Asthma (GINA) has called on Asthma Day event organisers around the world to get creative and adapt the It’s Time to… tagline as they see fit.
When Harvard researchers asked computer coders to write software analysing immune-system genes, they faced a challenge: The average computer programmer doesn’t know much about gene sequences.
Last week marked the third meeting of the International HIV Treatment as Prevention Workshop. Bringing together stakeholders from policy, industry, academia, and civil society, the workshop examines priority areas of research and action related to the use of antiretroviral therapy (ART) and reduced HIV transmission.
Any great invention begins with little more than a thought. To transform that initial idea into a tangible tool requires time and money – necessary investments if we want to continue developing ways to improve people’s lives and the world around us. nnovation requires support through appropriate incentives, and via protective mechanisms like the IP system.
You can’t provide a person with a routine, potentially life-saving, vaccine if you can’t find them. This is the point driven home by a recent Nature article, which suggests that the difficulty of vaccinating Nigerian nomads could be among the final hurdles to polio eradication. To address this, the National Stop Transmission of Polio (N-STOP) programme has undertaken a census of Fulani nomads and other isolated populations in Nigeria.
Fake medicines are now counted among the top money-making markets for crime groups in East Asia and the Pacific. This is the troubling news from a United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) report released Tuesday.
Brussels 18.04.13: EFPIA, AESGP & EGA, as the collective voice of the European pharmaceutical industry, welcome the compromise announced yesterday by the Irish presidency on the Priority Substances proposal in the Water Framework Dir