The disease might still be overlooked by researchers if not for the efforts of pharmacologist Victoria Hale, founder and chief executive of the San Francisco-based Institute for OneWorld Health, a nonprofit drug company started in 2000 to devise treatments for neglected diseases in developing countries.From the Institute's website:
Paromomycin had been tested in small human tests in the late 1990s, but although it demonstrated up to a 97% cure rate, research was halted. The World Health Organization, which owned the rights to the drug, was facing budget constraints, and the drug began collecting dust in the lab.
Enter Hale. Armed with a $4.7-million grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, she joined forces with WHO to complete the last round of tests needed for approval from the Indian government.
We challenge the assumption that pharmaceutical research and development is too expensive to create the new medicines that the developing world desperately needs. By partnering and collaborating with industry and researchers, by securing donated intellectual property, and by utilizing the scientific and manufacturing capacity of the developing world, OneWorld Health can deliver affordable, effective and appropriate new medicines where they are needed most.
Spring 2006: Guest Bloggers!
Rishi | Scott | Emily
Echan | Robert | ToastyKen