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Comparative Effectiveness Stimulus Stimulates Reactions

The $1.1 billion in the stimulus bill for comparative effectiveness research has, not surprisingly, generated a good deal of public attention.  Friday’s Washington Post and the front page of today’s New York Times both have stories covering the political jockeying.

Although both pieces focus on potential problems from the lack of individualization, either from libertarian or advocacy perspectives, neither has picked up our strain that personalized medicine, also favored by the Obama administration, will change the shape of the entire comparative effectiveness debate.

The recent story on Sanofi’s new ATHENA trial for Multaq is a great example of a personalized medicine approach to comparative effectiveness that could result in rescuing a drug that was previously rejected. Here’s the personalized medicine part:

A key difference: patients in [the new] trial were generally less sick than those in the earlier, failed study.
They all had AF, but their overall level of heart disease was less advanced. Sanofi’s U.S. Research chief, Paul Chew, told the Health Blog that the company picked this population because it appeared most likely to benefit from the drug.

(emphasis added). And that’s just a normal clinical subpopulation — no fancy genetic screening needed. Here’s the comparative effectiveness part:

Bruce Lindsay, section head of cardiac electrophysiology and pacing at the Cleveland Clinic’s Heart and Vascular Institute, said he didn’t find the results “earth-shattering.” But for patients “who do not have advanced heart disease it looks like it has a pretty good safety profile and could reduce hospitalizations,” he said.

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3 responses to “Comparative Effectiveness Stimulus Stimulates Reactions

  1. Pingback: Trends in 2009: Comparative Effectiveness Meets Personalized Medicine in the Senate « The Cross-Border Biotech Blog

  2. Pingback: Biotech Trends Update: Costs Savings from Personalized Medicine Sought by PBMs, Employers, Pharma Face Legal and Privacy Hurdles « The Cross-Border Biotech Blog

  3. Pingback: Biotech Trends in 2011: Comparative Effectiveness and Personalized Medicine « The Cross-Border Biotech Blog

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