Due to an editing error, yesterday's BIO SmartBrief incorrectly identified Mark McClellan. McClellan is the administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. SmartBrief regrets the error.
Induced pluripotent stem cells from a patient with gyrate atrophy of the choriod and retina, when corrected for a genetic error, did not show a larger amount of carcinogenic variations, according to a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The findings indicate that a patient's own modified cells can be used for genetic therapy, the researchers said.
The Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education is expected to announce new rules today governing what physicians are allowed to discuss when teaching CME courses. If an instructor has any kind of financial ties to a drug company, he must disclose those ties and a third party -- with no connection to the company -- would dictate which recommendations the physician could make. The new rule was endorsed by the American Medical Association.
Celera Genomics Group and Genentech have signed an agreement to share possible therapeutic discoveries, with Genentech financing development of protein-based drugs produced by Celera for treating cancer. Celera has made two similar arrangements with other pharmaceutical or biotechnology companies.
A leader in the country's green revolution said because crop yields are too low to feed the starving populations of developing countries, the two farming technologies -- organics and bioengineering -- need to be harmonized to raise production and prevent malnutrition. He also told the International Crop Science Congress new farming technologies should be available to "all economically underprivileged farming families."
Senators from both parties yesterday said they want to question President Bush's nominee to head the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Dr. Mark B. McClellan, about his opposition to importing lower-cost prescription drugs from Canada. Byron L. Dorgan, D-N.D., voiced concern about McClellan's outspoken position on the subject while holding the position of commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, saying the FDA is "supposed to regulate, not represent, the pharmaceutical industry."