You’re a little under the weather – nothing too serious; your doctor prescribes antibiotics and you should soon be well. But what if your symptoms continue to get worse, and your meds don’t work? This is a scenario that – in the U.S. alone – 2 million people are confronted with every year. The cause? Antibiotic-resistant microorganisms, or ‘superbugs’.
Recent public concern over pharmaceutical companies pulling out of antibiotic R&D is directly attributed to the life-threatening consequences these ‘superbugs’ could have if we run out treatment options. But what exactly are ‘superbugs’?
Continue reading “Superbugs 1 Humankind 0 – Pharma Giants Abandoning Antibiotics R&D”
Remember those ‘get out of jail free’ cards in the board game Monopoly, with somewhat dubious value (i.e. you’d sell them right before you landed in jail) that could get you back on track quicker? It turns out that this express ticket exists in the drug discovery world, and we’ll take you on this multi-million dollar ride.
Continue reading “FDA Priority Review Vouchers: Hope For Patients With Rare and Neglected Diseases”
Why does regulation matter in drug discovery? It may seem like a big obstacle in the path to delivering novel medicines to patients, delaying their treatment and prolonging discomfort. But how do we know that the drugs we take actually have their intended purpose? Are we aware of any potential side effects/adverse reactions? This is a true story of how a heroine dared to ask these questions, and saved a nation in the process.
Continue reading “Drug Detectives – Why Regulation Matters”
The process of taking a synthesized compound to market as a drug takes years, even decades, with the monetary cost of such an endeavor averaging $2 billion per approved drug. With such high risk and no promise of reward, companies and institutions all around the world still work toward inventing, testing and manufacturing these drugs.
Continue reading “Process and Costs of Getting a New Drug to Market”
The past few months have been revolutionary in the history – and perhaps more so the future – of medicine. In August 2017, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) gave its first gene therapy approval to Kymriah for treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Just weeks later Yescarta was approved for non-Hodgkin lymphoma. By Christmas that year, Luxturna became the first ever in vivo gene therapy to be FDA approved. In March 2018, Luxturna was used successfully to treat a young patient, preventing him from going blind.
Continue reading “What’s the Big Deal About Gene Therapy?”