The Medical Progress Today blog provides a forum for economists, scientists, and policy experts to explore the scientific, regulatory, and market frameworks that will best support 21st century medical innovation. We will focus especially on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the agency responsible for overseeing the nearly half-trillion dollar drug and medical device markets in the United States.
Our analyses and proposals will range widely in their focus and point of view. But, at its heart, Medical Progress Today will look for ways to harness the power of scientific advance, market incentives and prudent regulation to continue to revolutionize the treatment of illness by making U.S. health care more preventive, predictive, and cost effective.
We live in a time of breathtaking advances in the capacity to treat--and cure--illness. The translation of the human genome and an explosion of information from new sciences like metabolomics and proteomics have given researchers powerful new tools for understanding, treating and (eventually) curing deadly diseases like cancer and Alzheimer's. The old medical paradigm treated illnesses symptomatically with one-size-fits all medicines; the new paradigm will analyze disease at its molecular roots and to develop personalized therapies that match a patient's own unique biochemistry.
The question is not whether personalized medicine will become a reality, but when. Innovation is currently struggling in the face of regulatory, reimbursement, and insurance frameworks built around public health assumptions that fit the middle of the last century, rather than the first decades of the 21st century. Turning personalized medicine from an aspiration into a reality will require regulators, companies, and researchers to breakdown binary regulatory frameworks; develop collaborative approaches to rapidly validate new technological standards; and embrace clinical tools that allow patients and physicians to become full partners in the innovation process.
Through both this blog site and the original essays it will commission, MPT will provide a forum to explore the most current ideas--and emerging challenges--in the field of personalized medicine. Our agenda will also include conferences and symposia to bring together disparate interests--representing patients' groups, industry, regulators and policymakers--who, we believe, ultimately share the same goal: medical progress.
For more information on our ongoing effort to align regulatory frameworks and market incentives with the advancing science of personalized medicine, please see our companion web site, Project FDA.