Weekly Roundup (July 18-July 22, 2011): What We Read Crossing The ‘Bridge

This Week on the DataBridge

As we dissected clinical research news headlines, the DataBridge built on the conversations we found with a couple of blog posts this week. On Monday, we examined some of the underlying causes behind the increased failure rates in phase II studies and related Big Pharma problems. Then, in mid-week, we took a closer look at how comparative effectiveness research might impact pharma R&D and pharma pipelines in the future.

Around the Web: How to Use Pharma R&D to Open Pharma Pipelines, Plus Tons of Oncology Study News

The search for news about clinical studies revealed some highly interesting pieces this week—as usual. One intriguing article from Forbes detailed the steps needed for “rethinking Big Pharma,” while another piece assessed how Twitter could impact health research. Elsewhere, The Atlantic wondered whether science can survive the “Age of Austerity,” Pharmalot discussed the role that a “lack of diagnostics” has played in slowing personalized medicine and DrugChannels took a crack at predicting the “top 10 drugs of 2016.” In dissecting Big Pharma problems, PJ Online urged the industry to “stop playing the system.”

There was also a flurry of clinical research news headlines surrounding issues with the relationship between biotech and pharma. A story discussed how it was “imperative to bring biotech voices to pharma boardrooms,” while another suggested that lack of biotech experience on pharma boards of directors was leading to a “clash with biotech strategy.” Finally, a blog post urged that more biotech companies should stay independent and “stop the M&A obsession.”

In terms of biotech news, there was a story about how there is more detail than ever in “monitoring cellular interactions at nano-scale.” Another piece revealed how contrast agents can detect bacterial infections with "high sensitivity and specificity,” plus there was an update on a new fluorescent protein that “makes internal organs visible.” One more article looked at research designed to enhance studies of bioelectricity and cell therapy involved “engineering excitable cells.”

Coming up next week: Point-Counterpoint on the future of small biotech!

In both biotech news and developments in oncology studies, lymphoma generated some headlines, with reports that a lymphoma drug’s success in shrinking dog tumors could “lead to human treatment,” plus how a protein could “help diagnose and treat lymphoma” in both dogs and humans.

On the oncology study news front, researchers have developed a compound to “block signaling of cancer-causing protein.” Scientists have used live bacteria to battle HIV, while other researchers discovered that cancer and stem cells share the same origin, making it possible to “grow brain cells from skin.” One story covered a metabolic pathway that is “implicated in an intractable form of breast cancer.”

Other notable oncology studies include a “new mouse model” for testing cancer drugs and the identification of a “molecular basis for DNA breakage.” Elsewhere, cancer biologists uncovered a gene considered a “driving force” behind aggressive lung cancer and other researchers are “exploring keys to melanoma progression.” Finally, a new nanotechnology-based therapy “without side effects” has high potential for “dramatically improving” chemotherapy.


In Case You Missed It: SCDM 2011 Highlights a Hectic Fall Conference Schedule!

Early fall is shaping up to be a dramatically busy time for our team—but that’s just how we like it. September will find us in Baltimore for SCDM 2011, where we’re honored to be presenting on the blurring lines between clinical and data monitoring. From there, we’ll head directly to Toulouse, France, for ECCP 2011, before journeying to Buenos Aires, Argentina, for the Latin America Clinical Trials Conference the following week.

In October, we’re going to the DIA Clinical Forum in Basel, Switzerland, where we’ll be presenting once again—this time on the topic of risk evaluation in validation processes. Then, we’ll be attending the Life Science Clinical Research Forum in Chesapeake Bay, Maryland. As always, please let us know if you'd like to meet with us at any or all of these trade shows!

Did we miss any big news about clinical studies this week? Were there any stories that slipped past us that might add to our discussion of phase II studies or comparative effectiveness research?

Please feel free to share any links or observations in the comments section below … and have a great weekend!