Who’s Going to Pay for Future Drug Development?

Stewart Lyman | Xconomy | March 23, 2011

In the first part of this article, the author detailed how pharma and biotech companies, along with the federal government, provide the majority of funding for biomedical research in the U.S.  In this second part, he turns his attention to a number of other sources, both for-profit and nonprofit, that also provide the capital that drives drug discovery and development work.

The author talks about how the open source movement has flowed from software to scientific journals (e.g. PLoS, the Public Library of Science) and biomedical research (e.g. Sage Bionetworks). Much of the funding for the open source movement has come from philanthropic investments and government resources, but it also includes income from collaborative research partnerships as well as traditional grant support. Sage Bionetworks, for example, has just announced an oncology partnership with AstraZeneca. The question has been posed as to whether open source research and development tools can reinvigorate drug research.