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MARCH 2005

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A spate of new projects belies industry doldrums in 2004.



ig Pharma swallowed some bitter pills during 2004, with questions surfacing about big-name prescription and over- the-counter pain relievers, the shortage of flu vaccine, assorted lawsuits and the threat of increased FDA scrutiny.
      But while the industry may
Denmark-based Novo Nordisk, a leading diabetes care company, is expanding its operations in Clayton, N.C. Novo Nordisk will invest $100 million in the two-phase project, creating nearly 200 jobs by 2007. The current facility (pictured here) employs about 380.
be suffering from indigestion, hundreds of drugs are still flowing through the pipeline. The Pharmaceutical Re-search & Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) reports that U.S. researchers have about 800 medicines in development to treat diseases of aging. On the other end of the spectrum, at least 160 new medicines are in development for children. PhRMA estimates the industry spent more than US$33 billion in 2003 discovering and developing new medicines.
      A Milken Institute study released in October 2004 indicates the biopharmaceutical pipeline will keep flowing, adding more than 122,000 jobs over the next decade. Milken's study projects the states with the best opportunity for biopharma growth over that period include California, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, New York and Maryland.
      But the product pipeline is a long one and movement is often slow. Boston's Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development estimates a new prescription medicine costs US$802 million and takes up to 15 years to develop and win FDA approval. The FDA approved just 22 new prescription drugs during the first 11 months of 2004.

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