Amgen looks to boost its R&D success rate

It's a harsh reality in the drug development world that only one in every 10 drugs that makes it into clinical trials will be approved by the FDA and hit the market. The other nine drugs represent an enormous amount of time, energy and money that biopharma companies would like to save. Not surprisingly, many companies are looking for ways that they can improve their "hit rate:" the number of drugs in clinical trials that make it to market.

Xconomy takes an in-depth look at Amgen's approach to improving it's R&D efficiency. The company has organized it's R&D activities into three areas and has appointed key people to head up each stage. David Lacey is in charge of discovery, Joe Miletich handles the move from discovery to early-stage trials, and Sean Harper oversees later-stage studies.

"Over the next five years, I'd like to see us have about a 20-30 percent higher success rate over the historical average," Miletich tells Xconomy. Rather than simply passing drug candidates off to early-stage researchers, the company is having the two groups usher the drug from one stage to the next as it leaves discovery. Miletich says that by improving the "translational" step from discovery to trials, the company can better identify which drugs could be a success, and which aren't worth further investment.

 - read the full article at Xconomy