Taren Grom, Editor
NOTE: The content below contains the first few paragraphs of the printed article and the titles of the sidebars and boxes, if applicable.
As another year comes to a close, it’s natural to stop and take stock of the events that have shaped the industry and to look ahead in anticipation of what’s next on the horizon.
Once again, PharmaVOICE appreciates the time that so many industry executives took out of their busy schedules to comment on the trends that will shape the industry in the next year. In this Year in Preview issue we give ink to more than a dozen issues, as identified by you, our readers, that are expected to significantly impact the industry in 2007 and beyond.
Our experts took on subjects ranging from discovery to the state of the industry’s reputation. This wide-ranging and multidisciplinary approach to examining strategies and market factors once again illustrates the publication’s recognition that the life-sciences industry is a fluid and multifacted enterprise attended to by serious and dedicated individuals who share a common goal: improving the health and lives of millions of people.
While PharmaVOICE traditionally looks forward, we thought it would be an interesting twist to review some of the predictions that were made in last year’s issue. Several of our esteemed industry thought leaders graciously consented to review their predictions and evaluate their veracity. Not surprisingly, what these experts predicted, whether it was on the topic of DTC advertising, e-detailing, or funding, has come to fruition or will shortly. I believe Paul Freiman, president and CEO of Neurobiological Technologies Inc., summed it up best: “I may not be a Nostradamus, but certainly a Karnak.” We also asked industry insiders to provide us with their thoughts on the biggest challenges on what they and their companies will face in the coming year. In general, the common theme of the responses centered on patient-centric issues, such as improving the flow of information, leveraging global solutions for better clinical trials, reducing the cost of bringing new medicines to market, driving better security measures, and harnessing innovation. Ravi Kiron, Ph.D., formerly with Alza Corp., aptly captures the mood for most: “The coming year will be, as I term it, the year of reinnovation and globalization. Reinnovation signifies a resurgence of a better understanding of the building blocks of life. The industry’s ability to harness this knowledge in designing new therapeutics will have a major positive impact on the health of people. Globalization will ensure that medical treatments will benefit everyone on the planet.” In the coming months, every sector of the industry will face tough choices and new opportunities for growth. And even though the market will be absorbing changes that have defined a new economic reality, as Murray Aitken, senior VP, corporate strategy at IMS Health says, there will be areas in which growth is shifting from mature markets to emerging ones; situations where new product adoption is not keeping pace with the loss of patent protection by established products; cases in which specialty and niche products are playing a larger role; and an environment in which regulators, payers, and consumers are more carefully weighing the risk/benefit factors of pharmaceuticals. As with any prospective evaluation, there is no way to cover all of the trends that will impact the industry in the coming year or review all of the events from the past year in one issue, which is why we urge you to keep reading, thinking, and participating in — and in some cases listening to — PharmaVOICE. Please take a moment to review the growing list of experts who are quite literally raising their voices on the important issues of today and tomorrow as part of our newly launched WebCast Network (www.pharmavoice.com/podcasts). On behalf of everyone at PharmaVOICE, we wish you a healthy and happy new year. November/December 2006 Taren Grom Editor A Year in Preview The entire PharmaVOICE family wishes you, our readers, a healthy, prosperous, and safe new year.