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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Cure for Artery Hardening Killed by the "Free Market"

Just one more example of why the free market and patented medicines don't mix.
Alagebrium was a drug with dramatic success in Phase I and Phase II clinical trials. However, the company which produced it failed to raise cash for Phase III, eventually bankrupting the company.

Alagebrium is a small, easily produced molecule that, for technical reasons, may be difficult to defend as a patent. Without a patent - a drug has no future in the free market. As a result, one of the companies investors were advised to back out. Word spread, and the venture community backed away from Algaebrium.

Also, the effects of Algaebrium treatments are slow, cumulative and their significant apparently varies from patient to patient. They are not the kind of dramatic effects that investors look for in a drug.

There are no other known treatments for reducing glycosic cross-links, and it's unlikely a Phase III trial will ever begin on this drug.

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