Deadly gaps persist in new drug development for neglected diseases

Friday, October 25, 2013

New drugs for neglected diseases have a measurable medical benefit: Using inclusion on the WHO Essential Medicines List (EML)as a proxy measure for medical benefit, 48% of all new therapeutic products (excluding vaccines/biological products) approved 2000-2011 for neglected diseases were on the EML, compared with 4% for all other diseases.

Clinical trials are lacking for neglected diseases: Of the nearly 150,000 registered clinical trials for new therapeutic products in development as of December 2011, only 1% were for neglected diseases.

Most new candidates in development are vaccines: 123 new products are currently in development for neglected diseases, with over half (55%; 68) being vaccines or biological products, including 21 for malaria. A little over a quarter (28%; 34) are for the 17 NTDs, with only 3 NCEs (for onchocerciasis, Chagas disease, sleeping sickness).

Source: Medical Xpress (link opens in a new window)

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