Successful Product Launches with the Right Thought Leaders

June 30, 2010 · Leave a comment

Industry Insights from Paul Meade, M. Sc, MPH

When a biopharmaceutical company introduces a new medicine to the market, it comes after years of research, years of clinical development, and some times even years of regulatory review. With the patent ticking away from the early days of discovery, recovering the cost of such an investment in time and money requires a rapid and successful product launch. Achieving rapid success requires careful planning and a tremendous amount of valuable advice. This sage advice usually comes from respected thought leaders with years of experience in their respective therapeutic areas of expertise.

>From the early discovery phase, key opinion leaders help guide a company’s basic research to ensure unmet medical needs are met in a meaningful and cost-effective way. After moving beyond the proof-of-concept stage and into clinical development, other thought leaders play a critical role in assisting with the design of clinical trials that will be implemented through a network of investigators. Throughout the clinical development phases, thought leaders help guide a company with the most important messages other physicians will hear about the strengths and weaknesses of such a new medicine. And finally, as this new product enters the marketplace and is prescribed by the medical community, thought leaders play an important role ... read more »

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Europe's IMI Sets Pace for Public/Private Partnerships in Pharmaceutical Development

June 23, 2010 · Leave a comment

A recent PharmaTimes article highlighted the efforts of the largest public/private partnership in the pharmaceutical industry, Europe’s Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI).  The IMI, jointly funded for 2 billion euros by the European Commission and the industry group, the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA), seeks to address the development and delivery issues for critical new medicines that may be too large for an individual institution or company to tackle alone.

According to PharmaTimes, the IMI focuses on “unmet needs common to the pharmaceutical industry and patients – the key concepts being pre-competitive research, open innovation and patient-tailored therapies.”   Now in its third year accepting proposals, the initiative will target a number of new developments in pharmaceuticals and patient education, including the development of personalized medicine approaches for the treatment of diabetes and a variety of training programs for creating “informed patients.”

Ongoing projects like the Innovative Medicines Initiative and Italy’s Drug Development and Discovery Unit (see our previous post about the D3 here) are opening up greater opportunities for the pharmaceutical industry to pool its resources and work with the medical community for better public health.

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Medical Experts Drive Approval Process, Ensure Drug Safety

June 1, 2010 · Leave a comment

In a recent post on Pharmalot, the pharmaceutical industry blog highlighted a recent survey that gauged American opinions on the speed and safety of the process for developing new medicines.  The survey, conducted by Eli Lilly and ResearchAmerica, measured a number of opinions Americans hold regarding the pharmaceutical industry and the FDA itself.

While over 70 per cent of the respondents trust the FDA approval process for new drugs, more than half say the process should be faster.  The most stunning numbers in the survey come from the questions regarding industry collaborations with universities and the government. Ninety-four  per cent of the respondents said that pharmaceutical companies, universities, and the government should work together to develop new medicines more quickly and safely, and 88 per cent said that it was a good idea for drug companies to collaborate with hospitals, universities, and other health institutions.

The Lilly/Research America survey gives even more weight, the weight of public opinion,that the pharmaceutical industry must continue to increase its collaborations with medical experts to ensure that new medicines are delivered safely and in a timely fashion.  Working with the right experts at the right points of development can save millions of dollars in development costs, and, more importantly, save more lives.

At Thought Leader Select, the collaborative synergy of the pharmaceutical industry and medical experts ... read more »

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The Thought Leaders Driving Thought Leader Select: A Blog Series–John Kelly

May 26, 2010 · Leave a comment

John Kelly, a 40-year veteran of the pharmaceutical industry, joined Thought Leader Select in the spring of 2010. Throughout his career, John has served in many leadership posts, directing commercial development and clinical operations for a host of companies in the United Kingdom and Japan.  John holds an MBA from Oxford (UK) Brookes University, and has run a successful pharmaceutical consulting firm since 2006.  Prior to founding his consulting firm, Moffat-Dickson, Ltd., Kelly established and managed the European operations of Kowa Japan, a Japanese pharmaceutical company with clinical development in Europe, Russia, and India.  Kelly also established and managed European operations for another Japanese pharmaceutical concern, Kyowa Hakko, and served as commercial manager for Martindale Pharmaceuticals of the United Kingdom.

The Thought Leader Select Blog sat down with John, via Skype, to discuss his industry experience and his professional contribution to Thought Leader Select.

TLS Blog:  Good morning, John.  What made you sign on with Thought Leader Select?

John Kelly:  When I began talking with Paul Meade (president of Thought Leader Select) and Neil Mellor (principal agent for North America), I could see from the outset that this would be a concept that’s potentially new to a lot of companies.  From my experience in commercial development of new medicines,  I could see how structuring groups of medical experts would help those processes immensely.  ... read more »

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Personalized Medicine Shaping Pharma's Future

May 25, 2010 · 1 comment

Industry Insights from Paul Meade, M. Sc, MPH

I have spent the last 30 years directly or indirectly involved with the pharmaceutical industry. I worked for two international pharmaceutical companies and have advised many other pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies over the past few years. So I undoubtedly have a biased view in favor of this industry and its aims to promote health while making a reasonable profit for its research efforts.

While I can appreciate all the activities undertaken by pharmaceutical companies to develop medicines to improve the health of people throughout the world, I can also understand why many people have a jaded view of these companies. The perception that pharmaceutical companies take advantage of sick people and make them pay high prices for medicines to make them better is one that prevails among many societies. Yet, through the invention of antibiotics to control infectious diseases, and vaccines to prevent many childhood diseases, and many other products for a variety of diseases, the pharmaceutical industry has made significant improvements to healthcare. In addition to the high cost of medicines, few people realize that the total cost of pharmaceutical products as a portion of the total healthcare spending in the United States is less than 10%. Yet, many people believe that medicines are far too expensive.

Pharmaceutical companies, for the most part, ... read more »

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Italy's D3 Unites Pharmaceutical Industry, Academia for Public Health

April 13, 2010 · 1 comment

A report in yesterday’s Pharma Letter illustrates how critical partnerships between the pharmaceutical industry and academia can be beneficial for patients, medical professionals and the pharmaceutical industry alike. The Italian Institute of Technology’s Drug Discovery and Development Unit (D3) “brings together scientists with experience in industry and academia to discover new drugs in pain, inflammation and dementia.” Having already received considerable funding from the Italian government, D3 is interested in partnering with external collaborators to further projects.

Through its in-depth key opinion leader (KOL) identification and profiling, Thought Leader Select sees how many similar partnerships around the globe are successful in creating innovative therapies and furthering scientific work. We look forward to the advancements that D3 is sure to bring. As partnerships between the industry and leading academic centers of excellence continue to form, we expect today’s breakthrough compounds to become tomorrow’s key medicines for global public health much more quickly.

Institutes like the D3 in Italy will illustrate, on an even greater level, the synergies that inevitably develop when the pharmaceutical industry teams up with the right key opinion leaders for clinical investigation, advisory boards, editorial boards, and other key areas of deployment.

Read the full article here.


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The Trifecta of Mutually-Beneficial Relationships: KOLs, Pharma, and Patients—Part Three

March 18, 2010 · Leave a comment

Key Opinion Leaders Help to Foster Robust, Viable Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology Pipelines


Imagine a world where pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies developed therapies without input from KOLs at various stages of product discovery and development. The results would be far fewer treatments available, greater risks for unwanted side effects and potentially, a larger number of unnecessary therapies.
The average pharmaceutical company will initiate over 100 research projects to develop one successful compound. With the stakes high to create therapies that make a difference, pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies turn to KOLs for assistance in the following areas:


· Determining the medical needs for a disease early in the development of a compound
· Consulting on early clinical data as to the viability of a compound
· Providing guidance on how to present clinical data to practicing physicians in the community.

Next week’s fourth installment of the series by Kristen Smithwick will share how pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies contribute to the continued education and advancement of KOLs, clinical investigators and practicing physicians.

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