Medical Progress Today
mpt home | sign up

Volume 2, Number 46
December 23, 2005


PRINTER FRIENDLY

News

New Genetic Tests Boost Impact of Drugs – Cancer Screens and Moves by the FDA Help Finally Launch Era of Personalized Medicine
Wall Street Journal, 12-21-05

Editor’s Notes:

The great physician William Osler once observed that “if it were not for the great variability among individuals, medicine might as well be a science and not an art." While medicine will probably never become a push-button profession, where machines and tests replace human judgment, researchers are quantifying how “variability among individuals,” defined by DNA screening, can help guide a doctor’s therapeutic decisions.
Continue reading . . .

FDA approves promising drug for kidney cancer
Chicago Tribune, 12-21-05

Editor’s Notes:

Typically, clinical trials of cancer drugs test one drug against one type of cancer. Efficacy is usually measured by how quickly (or rather how slowly) the disease progresses, or whether the drug reduces patient mortality. Apparently one of the mid-stage trials that kept this drug alive, and helped lead to FDA approval, used an innovative trial design that tested the drug against many kinds of tumors, allowing researchers to zero in on one type of cancer where the drug was particularly effective.
Continue reading . . .

FDA Risk Communication Should Include Drug Benefit Info, PhRMA says
The Pink Sheet, 12-19-05

Editor’s Notes:

The Pink Sheet recounts a very interesting exchange between industry and the FDA on the issue of drug warnings, which seem to be driven as much by the media cycle as by sound science on the real risks and benefits facing patients. One company, DataBank, put the problem into context by highlighting the FDA’s risk communications for antidepressant drugs:
Continue reading . . .

Health Care for All, Just a (Big) Step Away
The New York Times, 12-18-05

Editor’s Notes:

The Times does an excellent job of explaining how government health care subsidies, in this case the tax deduction for employer-provided health care, distorts markets.
Continue reading . . .

FDA Operation Reveals Many Drugs Promoted as "Canadian" Products Really Originate From Other Countries
FDA News, 12-16-05

Editor’s Notes:

In the debate over drug importation, advocates for each side have been talking past each other. One side claims imported Canadian drugs are safe. The other says that they expose Americans to unwarranted health risks.
Continue reading . . .

Commentary

Lessons from Vioxx
The Boston Globe, 12-19-05

This Globe editorial takes the FDA (and Merck) to task for allowing Vioxx on the market, and argues for a variety of new marketing restrictions on pharmaceutical companies and other FDA reforms. The Globe believes that these changes would increase patient safety without slowing the production of life-saving new medicines.
Continue reading . . .

Vaccine Liability: Congress Should Give Vaccines a Shot in the Arm
Randolph W. Pate, J.D., MPH, Heritage Foundation, 12-16-05

Pate argues that the best way to expand America’s vaccine capacity is to invest in protecting the industry from specious legal claims while at the same time providing adequate compensation for people who’ve suffered from unforeseen side effects from vaccines.
Continue reading . . .

The Grassley Drug Plan
Robert Goldberg, Ph.D., Washington Times, 12-15-05

Goldberg, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, takes issue with legislation Senator Grassley advocates that would prevent branded pharmaceutical companies from offering so-called “authorized generics” that compete with products from generic companies.
Continue reading . . .

New Medicaid Model
Jeb Bush, Washington Times, 12-15-05

Florida Governor Jeb Bush explains how his pilot Medicaid reforms will improve health care for low-income Floridians, while also slowing the growth of Medicaid costs.
Continue reading . . .

Research

Value of Health and Longevity
Dr. Eric Topol, Kevin M. Murphy, NBER, 12-22-05

America’s debate over health care is largely focused on how much we spend, and seemingly how little we get for our spending. What is largely overlooked, consequently, is how far U.S. health care has advanced in recent years, and the value that these advances provide to patients and the U.S. economy in general.
Continue reading . . .


Medical Progress Today is published by the Center for Medical Progress at the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research.

For more information about Medical Progress Today, please contact the managing editor, Paul Howard, at phoward@manhattan-institute.org, or via telephone at 212.599.7000.

Press inquiries regarding Medical Progress Today can be directed to the Communications Department, at communications@manhattan-institute.org, or via telephone at 212.599.7000.

If you would like to unsubscribe, please reply to us and type "Unsubscribe" in the subject line.

In this week's issue:

SPOTLIGHT

NEWS

New Genetic Tests Boost Impact of Drugs – Cancer Screens and Moves by the FDA Help Finally Launch Era of Personalized Medicine
FDA approves promising drug for kidney cancer
FDA Risk Communication Should Include Drug Benefit Info, PhRMA says
Health Care for All, Just a (Big) Step Away
FDA Operation Reveals Many Drugs Promoted as "Canadian" Products Really Originate From Other Countries

COMMENTARY

Lessons from Vioxx
Vaccine Liability: Congress Should Give Vaccines a Shot in the Arm
The Grassley Drug Plan
New Medicaid Model

RESEARCH

Value of Health and Longevity
Center for Medical Progress 
Copyright Manhattan Institute for Policy Research
52 Vanderbilt Avenue
New York, NY 10017
(212) 599-7000
mpt@manhattan-institute.org