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A celebration of innovation

According to the ABPI, the UK industry is responsible for the R&D of more than a quarter of the world's leading medicines

A lightbulbThe Prix Galien awards trumpet the UK industry's contribution to medical R&D innovation

According to the ABPI, the UK industry is responsible for the R&D of more than a quarter of the world's leading medicines. Moreover, it ploughs more than 20 per cent of its turnover back into research for new compounds.

Innovation is the cornerstone of the pharmaceutical industry. While this is a hotly disputed issue among sector critics who believe it should spend a bit more time innovating and a little less time marketing, the fact remains; the pharma industry is an innovator.

However, the industry is not always so adept at blowing its own trumpet with regard to its achievements in R&D innovation. While accomplishments in marketing, PR and advertising for drugs are celebrated annually at several different high-profile events, it could be argued that the recognition of innovation in R&D is relatively underemphasised.

The ABPI's figures signify an obvious commitment to innovation, but public perception of the industry in this regard is less than flattering.

Managed entry specialists, WG Consulting is trying to increase public and industry awareness of just how innovative pharmaceutical companies are by raising the profile of the Prix Galien awards - an international award scheme honouring pharmaceutical innovation.

The UK Prix Galien, which next takes place in September at the Houses of Parliament, is an internationally renowned award to recognise the UK's achievements in the evolution of medicine and rewards outstanding achievement in R&D.

An independent panel of eminent NHS figures, headed up by Professor Sir Michael Rawlins, chairman of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), judges the awards.

The panel, assembled by WG Consulting (which owns the UK franchise for the awards), looks at criteria such as safety, efficacy, benefit and innovation, as well as overall health outcomes. Current holders of the UK Prix Galien, which takes place every two years, are Wyeth and Roche, which shared the award in 2004 for Prevenar and Fuzeon, respectively.

Any product that was launched or granted a new indication in the UK between Jan `04 and March `06 can be considered for the 2006 award. Products granted marketing authorisation in the UK through the EU centralised procedure, or under the mutual recognition process, are also admissible. Entrants must register online by February 28. The closing date for completed entries is March 31.

For further details on how to enter the UK Prix Galien, visit www.westawaygillis.co.uk/prix_galien.asp

2nd September 2008

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