Pharma finds promise, peril in biotech revolution

The problem with the European pharmaceuticals industry--at least in part--is biotechnology. Or that's what the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations believes. The big trade association says that the slowdown in new drug approvals seen around the world can be directly linked to the biotech revolution, which has revealed a host of new drug targets while making the drug discovery process more complex and costly.

"The increasing information on the genetic basis of disease and the inherent diversity of human biology means that we are discovering new disease targets which push the boundaries of our knowledge and make the development of drugs difficult and costly," EFPIA added in a document quoted by BioWorld. The EFPIA prepared its arguments in response to critics who attribute the slowdown in drug discovery to antitrust activities.

"The biotechnology revolution has been just that, a revolution," said the EFPIA. "It has presented pharmaceutical companies with so many promising targets and opportunities for innovation that identifying the best candidates is costly and results in many blind alleys. Translating new discoveries into marketable products has taken the industry longer than expected."

- read the article from BioWorld