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Curr Opin Drug Discov Devel. 2005 May;8(3):316-22.

Advances in knowledge management for pharmaceutical research and development.

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  • Pfizer Global Research and Development, 50 Pequot Avenue, New London, CT 06320, USA. sheryl.torr-brown@pfizer.com


There are two assumptions that are taken for granted in the pharmaceutical industry today. Firstly, that we can generate an unprecedented amount of drug-related information along the research and development (R&D) pipeline, and secondly, that researchers are more connected to each other than they have ever been, owing to the internet revolution of the past 15 years or so. Both of these aspects of the modern pharmaceutical company have brought many benefits to the business. However, the pharmaceutical industry is currently under fire due to allegations of decreased productivity despite significant investments in R&D, which if left to continue at the present pace, will reach almost US 60 billion dollars by 2006. This article explores the role of knowledge in the industry and reviews recent developments and emerging opportunities in the field of knowledge management (KM) as it applies to pharmaceutical R&D. It is argued that systematic KM will be increasingly necessary to optimize the value of preceding advances in high-throughput approaches to R&D, and to fully realize the anticipated increase in productivity. The application of KM principles and practices to the business can highlight opportunities for balancing the current reliance on blockbuster drugs with a more patient-centric focus on human health, which is now becoming possible.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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