Bioscience

New federal law paves way for CPath, others in drug development field

October 3, 2007

By Flinn Foundation

[Source: Phoenix Business Journal] — Legislation aimed at promoting drug safety and economic development is paving the way for The Critical Path Institute in Tucson. U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., said her bill was signed into law today by President George W. Bush as part of the Food and Drug Administration Amendments Act of 2007.

Dr. Raymond Woosley, president and chief executive of The Critical Path Institute, known as CPath, said the bill authorizes creation of a public/private partnership to work on accelerating drugs to market, which is what CPath does. “It puts $5 million out there for us to request,” Woosley said. One of the big problems in drug development is that testing methods need to be updated, he said. “We test drugs today the same way we did 50 years ago,” he said. CPath is helping to change that, he said. “We’ve got 16 companies working with the FDA,” Woosley said. “We developed an agreement between those 16 companies to come together and share with each other how they test drugs.”

He said the goal is not for these pharmaceutical companies to make more money, but to develop safer drugs by accelerating testing and focusing on safety. The FDA and its European and Japanese counterparts are part of the consortium. “We’ve got 190 scientists working together, and it all started because Arizona gave us the funding,” Woosley said. “We had to have a legal agreement that said we’ve got a model that doesn’t break antitrust rules.” [Note: For more information, visit www.c-path.org.]