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Lilly CEO Lechleiter Calls for Repair of the 'Engine of Biopharma Innovation'
Date:10/30/2009

SAN DIEGO, Oct. 30 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- In a speech today to the City Club of San Diego, John C. Lechleiter, Ph.D., chairman and chief executive officer of Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE: LLY), said that the engine of biopharmaceutical innovation is "broken." He offered a vision for biopharmaceutical companies to "reinvent innovation" to make the most of today's wealth of scientific knowledge to benefit patients and address unmet medical needs. Lechleiter's remarks came the day after his company dedicated a state-of-the-art biotechnology center in San Diego.

"At a time when the world desperately needs more new medicines - for everything from H1N1 to Alzheimer's disease - we're taking too long, spending too much and producing far too little," said Lechleiter, whose company is headquartered in Indianapolis, Ind. "Repowering pharmaceutical innovation is an urgent need not only for our company and our industry but for our nation - and for communities like San Diego and Indianapolis that have a huge stake in the life sciences. We remain dependent on a society that welcomes and values new ideas, and public policy that enables innovation to be rewarded for the value it creates. But we also know that we need to change."

Addressing the audience of business leaders that included many from San Diego's biotech community, Lechleiter said that biopharmaceutical research and development reduces medical costs, improves Americans' health, and provides many high-paying jobs. But despite its value to health care, he said, the biopharma industry is losing its advantage and wasting its potential. Noting the current debate on health care reform, he stressed the need for public policy that enables and rewards medical innovation that can help rein in health care costs and improve quality.

Lechleiter outlined major challenge
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SOURCE Eli Lilly and Company
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