Pharmaceutical research: an essential sector for health and the knowledge of diseases
Pharmaceutical research is a set of procedures that include research, design of therapeutics and sale of drugs. It focuses on the medicine of human beings and also of animals. Research in this field is carried out by pharmaceutical labs and public and private biotechnology companies. Before putting a drug on the market, experts must respect a series of important steps.
From the research period to the release of the drug
Many pharma research papers explain the steps involved in bringing a drug to market. The research period lasts on average 8 to 10 years. Several reasons can justify the decision to market a new drug:
- An important discovery or innovation in university, laboratory or hospital research.
- An analysis proving that there is a gap in the current drug supply
- A project of a drug company.
The first trials of therapeutics by laboratories
After having launched the creation of a drug, the laboratories undertake tests on animals that have characteristics quite similar to those of humans, given the field being tested. Depending on the results obtained, the laboratory will move on to the clinical trials phase, on volunteers.
Following this stage, we move on to analyses on healthy subjects to test their reactions and the level of tolerance to the drug. Then, we move on to a larger number of patients to determine the effects of the therapy.
Obtaining authorizations and launching drug production
Once the drug has been developed, it must receive administrative authorizations in order to be distributed to the general public. There are various authorities responsible for regulating the drug industry, including the EMA at the Euro zone level. To obtain marketing authorization, the new pharmaceutical product must undergo clinical trials lasting between 1 and 3 years.
Marketing of the pharmaceutical product
Once all these steps have been completed, the drug formula is released to the general public and enters the market. It may still go through pharmaco-epidemiological studies. For a period, the drug will be protected by patents, which guarantee the rights of the developers. When the patents expire, the drug becomes generic and other manufacturers can produce.
The progress of the pharmaceutical industry is dazzling and the opening of this industry to private labs has made it possible to make phenomenal progress.