BIO International Convention

Dear Research Advocate: This has been an important week for research, innovation and the power of advocacy. The Senate Appropriations Committee passed the Labor-H bill, which funds NIH, CDC and AHRQ, among other programs. The bill includes a well-justified, but nonetheless remarkable, $2 billion increase for NIH in FY17. However, CDC and AHRQ both receive cuts in the bill ($118 million and $10 million, respectively). While we applaud Chairman Blunt (R-MO), Ranking Member Murray (D-WA) and the Committee as a whole for their extraordinary determination to regrow the NIH budget, underinvesting in CDC and AHRQ is a costly mistake. Read our statement on the bill. It is important to note that...
As the population ages, is it possible to prevent, intercept and delay the onset of disease to live not only longer but expand the healthy period of life? Academic and industry experts discussed the concept of immorbidity - a perspective on medicine in which the priority shifts from treating or curing diseases like cancer and Alzheimer's to preventing, intercepting and halting the progression of disease -- at a session titled "Lifespan or Healthspan: Is it Time for a Paradigm Shift?" at the BIO International Convention on Wednesday, June 8. Dr. Keith Yamamoto, executive vice dean of the School of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco and Dr. William N. Hait, global head of...
How to shape and communicate the value of medical innovation is top of mind for research stakeholders as they balance the cost of innovation with meeting the needs of patients. Experts representing industry and payers discussed the challenges of defining innovation in the policy, market and political environments during a session at the BIO International Convention on Tuesday, June 7. Josh Ofman, senior vice president at Amgen noted that industry needs to be more proactive in communicating the value proposition of innovation: "We need a holistic picture of value from a societal perspective, patient perspective and payer perspective." "Groups need to look at models that work" in assessing...
Actor Will Smith joined Dr. Bennet Omalu and BIO president Jim Greenwood for a keynote address today at the BIO International Convention examining the science that led to the discovery of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in football players and other athletes. Smith portrayed Omalu in the movie "Concussion" which focused on Omalu's discovery of CTE in former football players and his efforts to convince the National Football League (NFL) of the relationship between concussions and repetitive brain trauma with CTE. Omalu said he examined former Pittsburgh Steelers' football player Mike Webster's brain with his own money and brought it to his home which allowed him to own the...
Partnerships between patient groups, industry, government and academia are accelerating the research and development of new treatments for rare diseases, many of which have no effective therapies. As a result of the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Orphan Drug Designation, eligible companies receive incentives for product development such as tax credits for qualified clinical testing and new drugs are reaching patients sooner. Since 1983, more than 400 drugs and biologic products for rare diseases have been developed, far outpacing the number of products that were available some 40 years ago. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is among the nearly 7,000 rare diseases where very few...
Alzheimer’s disease is the 6 th leading cause of death in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, affecting 11% of the population 65 years and older. Without a treatment or prevention breakthrough, studies estimate there could be as many as 13.5 million Americans living with the disease by 2050 with associated health care costs rising above $1 trillion. However, the research has progressed, as scientists unlock and unveil the secrets of the brain. Recently, scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have shown that measures of the tau protein are better markers of the cognitive decline of Alzheimer's than measures of amyloid beta...
As 2015 comes to an end, let’s revisit the top ten most popular Research!America blog posts of the year (based on page views) that emphasized the importance of communicating the value of research and making research and innovation a higher national priority. We would like to thank our outstanding guest bloggers, including early career scientists, and leaders representing academia, industry, patient groups and scientific societies, who believe in the endless possibilities of scientific discovery, development and delivery to improve our nation’s health. 1) Lessons learned from a workshop on effective science communication April 24 : Our most popular post of the year! Debra Cooper, Ph.D., a...
A global solution and removing barriers to antibiotic development are necessary to combat antimicrobial resistance (AMR). Representatives from various research and health sectors discussed strategies for fighting superbugs at a BIO International Convention super session today. The panel agreed there must be a greater focus on streamlining clinical trials and harmonizing the global regulatory process to support the development of new antibiotics. Jim O'Neill, chairman, Review on Antimicrobial Resistance, recommended the establishment of a global $2 billion AMR Innovation Fund over five years funded by industry to help jump start product development. Venture capitalist risk could stimulate...
Astronaut Scott Kelly described the type of work underway on the International Space Station in a special satellite uplink at today's BIO International Convention luncheon. During a live interview, floating in zero-gravity, Kelly said they're working on 400 scientific projects on the station, and they hope to learn more about such things as bone loss and muscle wasting disease in space. With the latest technology, he said they're able to get plenty of data on human health performance and physiology, adding he hopes to learn "if there is a cliff out there in regards to our physiology as we go from six months to a year and longer." There are health related problems that can only be solved in...
"There's not one fix" to ensuring patient access to innovative medicine. That appeared to be the consensus of moderator Christi Shaw, president, Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation and panelists, discussing the opportunities and challenges in getting new therapies to patients with complex and chronic conditions like cancer, multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis during a super session today at the BIO International Convention. Is the cost of some drugs a barrier? Are we adequately pricing the value of innovation? To ensure breakthroughs continue to reach patients, Scott Gottlieb, resident fellow, American Enterprise Institute, suggested that we need an approach to financing care that'...

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Sidebar Quote

You can change the image of things to come. But you can’t do it sitting on your hands … The science community should reach out to Congress and build bridges.
The Honorable John E. Porter