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New Study Shows That Pharmacogenomics Could Benefit Patients, Spur Investment in Innovation
Date:8/3/2009

WASHINGTON, Aug. 3 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A new study funded by the National Pharmaceutical Council (NPC) shows that pharmacogenomics -- the field of scientific research focused on learning how genetic profiles predict the body's response to medicines - has the potential to lead to higher levels of research and development (R&D) investment and an increased pace of pharmaceutical innovation, offering substantial benefits for patients.

The study, "The Future Costs, Risks and Rewards of Drug Development: The Economics of Pharmacogenomics," was written by Joseph Cook and Graeme Hunter of NERA Economic Consulting and John Vernon of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and published in the July issue of PharmacoEconomics. According to the study, pharmacogenomics can provide more focused and targeted information to researchers during the R&D process, potentially reducing the number of patients needed for clinical trials as well as the cost and time required to complete the trials. Products could reach the market faster, providing a longer period of time over which the innovator companies could recoup the investment costs of developing products.

"We may see pharmacogenomics pushing us in the right direction of more investment in pharmaceuticals," said study author John Vernon. "The main features likely to drive this phenomenon are the ability of pharmacogenomics to drive adoption of drugs and lower costs of development and time to commercialization. Of course, we have yet to see how these factors are likely to play out, but pharmacogenomics has the makings of a powerful force for economic change and encouraging the financing of new drugs and treatments for patients."

For example, better information about the patients who are more likely to respond to a medication could increase the rate of use of that medicine. Biological markers also could help to ident
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SOURCE National Pharmaceutical Council
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