Archive for February, 2004



February 24, 2004

The perilous path of biotech drugs
“The idea for a revolutionary new drug to treat allergies and asthma came to scientist Tse Wen Chang in a dream …
It would take 16 years and cost the Changs and their partners, Genentech and Novartis, hundreds of millions of dollars to develop the drug and win government approval. And it still may fall short of expectations.”



February 20, 2004

Feds to Biotech: No More Fibbing!
“A little-noted change in drug-approval procedures is a step toward avoiding more ImClone-style stock scandals “



February 19, 2004

Pfizer Wins One For Sane Patents
“What’s in a patent? For the drug industry, everything. And that’s why a court appeal that Pfizer won late Friday [Feb 13] is so important. At issue was whether a researcher must actually discover a drug in order to patent it. “



February 16, 2004

Hospital ventures into stem-cell reimplantation
“Physicians at Caritas St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center recently launched an adult stem-cell reimplantation study to battle acute cardiac disease.

Project managers at the center, which is the teaching hospital for Tufts University School of Medicine, say it is the first such program in the world.”



February 12, 2004

Cloning Creates Human Embryos
“Scientists in South Korea report that they have created human embryos through cloning and extracted embryonic stem cells, the universal cells that hold great promise for medical research.

Their goal, the scientists say, is not to clone humans but to advance understanding of the causes and treatment of disease. “



February 11, 2004

Doctors Call for Abbott Boycott on AIDS Price Hike
“A group of AIDS doctors on Tuesday called for a boycott of drugs made by Abbott Laboratories Inc. to protest the company’s recent price hike on an important HIV medicine.”

What makes this case particularly interesting is that the price hike is seen by many as a tactic to make using other company’s AIDS drugs more expensive, as they are typically prescribed with Abbott’s Novir, and compensate for profit shortfalls from the the lower than expected doses of Norvir that are being prescribed.

See also: Kaisernetwork,



February 9, 2004

FDA a Big Winner In ’05 Bush Budget
“One of the biggest winners in President Bush’s proposed 2005 budget is the Food and Drug Administration, which would receive an almost 9 percent increase in funding to expand a ‘food defense’ program, to respond to the mad cow disease crisis and to continue construction of its new campus in suburban Washington. “