Saturday, January 12, 2013

Is Big Pharma Aiding Universities?

 My opinion:  I know that Big Pharma has been under a lot of controversy in recent years.  For example, due to drug commercials, apparently patients are now asking their doctors for certain kinds of medication.  What if the patient is very persuasive but has little medical background?  Could this potentially override the doctor's more knowledgeable opinion?  We must also ask how Big Pharma could use the universities to aid their profits.  If these universities can be accredited in drug commercials, it might make the drug look more legitimate.  It could also contribute to making universities more business-like and money-centered.  On the other hand, Big Pharma could benefit universities if there are drastic cuts in government research funding.  But, as with the legalization of marijuana, is this the best way to get more money for research?
 
Are drug giants driving university research?
First Published Jan 11 2013 08:05 pm • Updated 2 hours ago
St. Louis • In their quest for the next big drug discovery, pharmaceutical companies are increasingly teaming up with some of the nation’s top universities, recruiting campus scientists as partners and offering schools multimillion-dollar deals to work on experimental drugs in development.
Big Pharma has long sought to profit from academia’s innovations in more limited arrangements. Now the two sides are often joining forces as equals. But the drug makers’ aggressive pursuit of university research has drawn the ire of academic purists who question whether the partnerships put profits ahead of, or on equal footing with, science for science’s sake.
"What it does is to blur the boundaries between academic medical centers and investor-owned companies," said Marcia Angell, former editor-in-chief of the New England Journal of Medicine and a prominent critic of the pharmaceutical industry’s new coziness with major campuses.
Pfizer Inc., Astra Zeneca PLC and Eli Lilly and Co. are among the major international drug companies signing agreements with schools such as New York University, Harvard and the University of California at San Francisco.  Continued at: http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/world/55615175-68/university-research-drug-pfizer.html.csp.

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