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ERIC Number: EJ794153
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Apr-25
Pages: 1
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0009-5982
Academe Should Oppose Speedier Approval of Generic Drugs
Steinbach, Sheldon Elliot
Chronicle of Higher Education, v54 n33 pA38 Apr 2008
Biotechnology, usually commercialized in collaboration with the private sector, has been among the most fruitful university-based research endeavors, for the public as well as universities. Biological medications have made possible crucial advances in the treatment of life-threatening illnesses and yielded significant royalty streams for the universities where they were developed. However, the patents for the first generation of biological drugs are now expiring. In its search for cost reductions in government and consumer expenditures on health care, Congress is considering legislation to expedite Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of "generic" versions of the medications referred to as "follow-on biologics" because, unlike generic pills, they will be similar, but not exactly identical, to the product they attempt to copy. While lower-cost biologics certainly provide health-care benefits, some of the legislation under consideration would undermine incentives for innovation and the mutually beneficial research-and-development partnerships that universities have forged with industry--relationships also quite beneficial to patients. In this article, the author explains the implications of this legislation to patients who are waiting for the next generation of biological medications. The author also discusses why the academe should speak out in defense of the research and development pipeline of life-saving therapies they have created and of the university-industry partnerships that will preserve this pipeline of hope for future generations.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A