September 12, 2013

Research Roundup: What we’re reading this week

Communications Officer

In this regular feature on Breakthroughs, we highlight some of the most interesting reads in global health research from the past week.

Rep. Leonard Lance (R-NJ) this week reintroduced a bill—called the Modernizing Our Drug & Diagnostics Evaluation and Regulatory Network Cures Act—that aims to stimulate the development of diagnostics and potential therapies that have no patent protection.

The World Health Organization has announced it will start charging a fee to manufacturers seeking prequalification of their medicines and pharmaceutical components. Some public health advocates are expressing concern that fees might have a negative effect for procurement and access to medicines.

Nature News examines the effects of sequestration and budget cuts on US researchers who receive funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). In related news, a new opinion piece in Nature argues that the effects of federal budget cuts provide an opportunity to revisit the NIH’s funding structure.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is supporting efforts to develop an all-natural insecticide to prevent malaria and other insect-borne diseases.

The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America released a report this week showing that 271 vaccines are under development, all in clinical trials or under review by the US Food and Drug Administration. This includes 137 vaccines for infectious diseases.

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