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R&D Investment by U.S. Biopharmaceutical Companies Remains Strong Despite Ongoing Economic Challenges
Date:3/16/2010

Importantly, this investment has produced results. According to a 2006 CBO analysis, "Many examples exist of major therapeutic gains achieved by the industry in recent years.... [A]necdotal and statistical evidence suggests that the rapid increases that have been observed in drug-related R&D spending have been accompanied by major therapeutic gains in available drug treatments."

For instance, independent research shows that cancer patients are living, on average, three years longer – and 83 percent of those survival rate gains are due to new treatments, including medicines. Heart failure and heart attack deaths fell by nearly half from 1999 to 2005. And since the advent of highly active anti-retroviral therapy in 1995, the annual number of U.S. deaths due to AIDS has plummeted by more than 70 percent.

As in past years, an increasing number of potential new drugs are entering clinical testing. Today, there are more than 2,900 medicines in clinical trials or awaiting review by the Food and Drug Administration in the U.S., compared with 2,400 in 2005. The current pipeline includes more than 800 medicines to treat cancer, over 300 specific to rare diseases and more than 300 medicines for heart disease and stroke.

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SOURCE Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America
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