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PhRMA: 44 medicines and vaccines for HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention in development

BY Michael Johnsen

 

WASHINGTON — America’s biopharmaceutical research companies are currently developing 44 medicines and vaccines for HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention, according to the latest Medicines in Development report by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America issued Wednesday. 
 
A second report, a PhRMA-sponsored white paper by Boston Healthcare Associates, “The Value of Innovation in HIV/AIDS Therapy” highlights the progress in HIV/AIDS treatment and its impact on patients with the disease. 
 
Both reports are being released in conjunction with PhRMA’s 2014 Research & Hope Awards, which will honor researchers and patient advocates for their role in improving HIV/AIDS research and care.
 
“Over the past 35 years, HIV/AIDS has gone from a death sentence to a chronic, manageable disease thanks in large part to advances in biopharmaceutical research,” stated PhRMA president and CEO John Castellani. “Despite the progress that has been made, researchers are continuing the fight against HIV/AIDS and, with more than 40 medicines in the pipeline, there is more hope than ever that a cure can be achieved.”
 
Currently, biopharmaceutical companies are focused on improved treatment regimens, more effective therapies and preventive vaccines that are either in clinical trials or awaiting review by the Food and Drug Administration. The 44 medicines and vaccines in the development pipeline include 25 antivirals, 16 vaccines and three cell/gene therapies. 
 
Today, there are 94 active clinical trials for HIV medicines and vaccines in the United States. Of those, 43 have not yet started recruiting patients or have recently begun seeking participants. Therapies being investigated involve attachment inhibitors, gene modification and inducing T-cell responses, among others. 

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SpiderTech launches pre-cut kinesiology tape

BY Michael Johnsen

TORONTO — SpiderTech recently announced the launch of its pre-cut kinesiology tape that provides drug-free relief for anyone suffering from minor aches and pain. Each application lasts for up to five days. 
 
SpiderTech works in three ways. First, the tape provides enhanced sensory stimulation which essentially disrupts and diminishes signals of pain. Second, micro-circulatory effects improve fluid dynamics and lymphatic drainage to improve circulation and help in the healing of swelling, bruising and oedema. Finally, if the tape is stretched and applied over muscles in a shortened position, it will serve as support and a mechanical barrier to potentially harmful postures and ranges of motion.  
 
The product is now available in stores nationwide, including 1,000 select Walmart locations, the company reported. 
 
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GPhA: Generic drugs represented cost savings of $239 billion in 2013

BY Michael Johnsen

 

WASHINGTON — The Generic Pharmaceutical Association on Wednesday released a report showing that generic drugs saved the United States health system $239 billion in 2013, a 14% increase over cost savings achieved in 2012, and the largest annual savings to date. The report also calculates that generic medications saved a record of nearly $1.5 trillion over the most recent decade (2004-2013).
 
According to the report, nervous system and cardiovascular treatments in the last 10 years accounted for 58%, or $851 billion, of cost savings.
 
“Just last month, we have seen how smart health choices like opting for generic drugs hold the power to move our nation’s budget trajectory in a positive direction," stated Ralph Neas, GPhA president and CEO. "In fact, recent Congressional Budget Office estimates now predict that Medicare and Medicaid spending is expected to drop by billions over the next decade,” he said. “With more than $239 billion in savings in 2013 alone from generic drugs, it is clear that generics have played a critical part in lowering health cost projections. This track record of savings is unparalleled, and the savings will grow substantially as we enter the era of biosimilars, the next frontier of generic industry innovation.”
 
In recent years, spending on federal health care programs has slowed sharply. In August 2014 the CBO changed its estimates for Medicare spending, projecting a drop of $49 billion (less than 1%) from 2015 and 2024, while Medicaid spending is expected to drop by $40 billion (approximately 1%) over the next decade. Generic drugs, which provide the same medicine and same outcomes for patients at a lower price, played a key role in the downturn of rising health costs.
 
All data were compiled by IMS Health on behalf of GPhA.
 
 

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