Access and Delivery of Essential Medicines

2010 Archive

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Translational Studies of Antimalarial Drug Resistance in Africa

Philip Rosenthal (UCSF)
Mar 2010

Dr. Rosenthal is a Professor of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. He is a member of the Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program, the Sandler Center for Basic Research in Parasitic Diseases, and the Global Health Sciences Program at UCSF. He also directs a Fogarty International Center UCSF/Makerere University Training Grant for the training of African clinician scientists in malaria research. Dr. Rosenthal received a B.S. in Biochemistry from the State University of New York at Stony Brook and an M.D. from New York University. He then trained in Medicine at the University of Michigan and in Infectious Diseases at the University of California, San Francisco. He also served as a consultant for the World Health Organization. Dr. Rosenthal's research interests focus on malaria, including basic science, clinical, and translational research. Basic science studies include the characterization of a family of parasite cysteine proteases that includes promising targets for new antimalarial drugs. In collaboration with chemistry collaborators, his group is now pursuing drug discovery directed against cysteine proteases. Another project is exploring antibiotics as antimalarial drugs. Dr. Rosenthal's group also evaluates the clinical and molecular epidemiology of malaria, with studies based in Uganda. These studies include clinical trials of new antimalarial agents and drug combinations, evaluations of the roles of parasite and host genetic polymorphisms in drug resistance, considerations of the importance of the complexity of malaria infections, and studies of molecular mechanisms of drug resistance. Dr. Rosenthal is on the editorial boards of Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy and The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. He has received an NIH Physician Scientist Award and was an Established Investigator of the American Heart Association. He receives research funding from the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Medicines for Malaria Venture.

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Fair Trade in Biotechnology and the Ownership of Biomedical Knowledge

Dr. Nicole Hassoun and Dr. Robert Shafer 
Feb 2010

Most of the world’s health problems afflict poor countries and their poorest inhabitants. One reason for this is that the poor cannot access many of the existing drugs and technologies they need. Another is that little of the research and development on new drugs and technologies benefits the poor. Dr. Hassoun's talk will consider a new way of restructuring the incentives pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies face to enable them to target their technologies to the poor, namely, promoting Fair Trade and Investment in pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies via a Fair Trade Licensing Campaign.

Dr. Hassoun is is an assistant professor in philosophy at Carnegie Mellon University. She is affiliated with Carnegie Mellon’s Program on International Relations and the Center for Bioethics and Health Law at the University of Pittsburgh. Hassoun writes primarily in political philosophy and ethics and focuses, in particular, on global economic and environmental justice. Her articles appear in journals such as the American Philosophical Quarterly, Public Affairs Quarterly, Environmental Ethics, The American Journal of Bioethics, Journal of Moral Philosophy, and Utilitas.

Dr. Shafer will discuss one of the most controversial areas confronting biomedical researchers and health care practitioners - the ownership of biomedical knowledge. Proponents of broad definitions of intellectual property such as the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA) argue that ownership of biomedical knowledge is essential motivation for continued discovery and innovation. In contrast, biomedical organizations such as the U.S. National Academy of Sciences (NAS), and all professional medical organizations argue that ownership of biomedical knowledge stifles innovation because most biomedical advances are built upon previous discoveries and that restricted dissemination of clinical knowledge is antithetical to medical practice. The actions of University licensing offices are often more aligned with the proclamations of the AIPLA than of the NAS and professional medical organizations.

Dr. Shafer is Associate Professor of Medicine (Infectious Diseases) and by Courtesy of Pathology. 

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Stanford Initiatives to Innovate for the Developing World

Kathy Ku (Head of Stanford Office of Technology Licensing), 
Stanford Biodesign Program, SPARK Drug Discovery Program, 
& the Design School's "Entrepreneurial Design for Extreme Affordability"
Jan 2010
About Kathy Ku: 
Katharine Ku is Director of the Office of Technology Licensing (OTL) at Stanford University. OTL is responsible for the licensing of various state-of-the-art university technologies and industry sponsored research agreements, material transfer agreements and collaborations.

In FY2009, Stanford received $65.05M in gross royalty revenue from over 500 technologies, with royalties ranging from $3 to $37.98M. From 1994-98, in addition to her OTL responsibilities, Ku was responsible for Stanford’s pre-award Sponsored Projects Office. Ku was Vice President, Business Development at Protein Design Labs, Inc. in Mountain View, California from 1990-1991. Prior to PDL, Ku spent 12 years at Stanford in various positions, worked at Monsanto and Sigma Chemical as a research scientist, administered a dialysis clinical trial at University of California, and taught chemistry and basic engineering courses.

Ku has been active in the Licensing Executive Society (LES), serving as Vice President, Western Region and Trustee of LES and various committee chairs. She also has served as President of the Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM) from 1988- 90. She received the AUTM 2001 Bayh-Dole Award for her efforts in university licensing. In 1999, Stanford OTL received the Licensing Executives Society Achievement Award for licensing, the Society’s most prestigious award. She has a B.S. Chemical Engineering (Cornell University), an M.S. in Chemical Engineering (Washington University in St. Louis) and is a registered patent agent.

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Innovation in Global Health:
Are Markets Broken or Simply Telling the Truth

Dr. Leighton Read; Co-founder of Affymax, Aviron, and Amgen, General Partner of Allow Ventures, Chairman of Seriosity, Inc.
Jan 2010
Dr. Leighton Read is a successful entrepreneur, CEO, and high-tech investor. Some of the companies he has founded or co-founded include Affymax NV acquired by Glaxo; Aviron, the biotechnology company acquired by MedImmune that developed FluMist(tm); and Avidia, acquired by Amgen. He is a general partner in four funds at Alloy Ventures in Palo Alto, California. He has a long-standing interest in the psychological principles that underlie successful electronic games and is Chairman of Seriosity, Inc. ( 

Dr. Read received a BS from Rice University in psychology and biology, an MD from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, and internal medicine training at Duke and the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital,where he held appointments at the Harvard Medical School and School of Public Health. His publications cover decision theory in medicine, cost-effectiveness analysis, and medical innovation policy. He produced a successful interactive computer game in 1984 to promote healthy lifestyles based on text-based adventure games and behavior modification. 

He is a frequent public speaker and serves as a director of six young companies in the fields of biotechnology, nanotechnology, cleantech, and software and serves as a trustee or director of BeneTech, BioVentures for Global Health, The UC Berkeley Foundation and School of Public Health Council and the Santa Fe Institute. His awards include several as coinventor of technology underlying the Affymetrix GeneChip(tm) and Ernst & Young's California Life Science Entrepreneur of the Year.
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Synthetic Biology in Pursuit of Low-Cost, Effective, Anti-Malarial Drugs

Dr. Jay Keasling; professor in the Department of Chemical Enginnering and Bioengineering at Berkeley, Director, Physical Biosciences Division, LBL and Synthetic Biology Engineering Research Center, CEO of the Joint Bioenergy Institute
Jan 2010
Dr. Keasling talks about his development of synthetic artemisinin, a key anti-malarial compound, reducing the cost of a key anti-malarial drug to a matter of cents.

Dr. Keasling is a professor in the Department of Chemical Enginnering and Bioengineering at Berkeley, Director of the Physical Biosciences Division, LBL, and the Synthetic Biology Engineering Research Center, and CEO of the Joint Bioenergy Institute. For more information on his research: 
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Public Private Partnerships and Global Access Contracting for Neglected Tropical Diseases

Dr. Carol Mimura; former Director, Office of Tech. Licensing, UC Berkeley
Jan 2010
Carol Mimura is the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Intellectual Property & Industry Research Alliances (IPIRA) at the University of California, Berkeley. She is a member of the Forum on Drug Discovery, Development, and Translation of the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine, has served on the board of directors of the Children's Hospital Research Institute in Oakland, CA and of BayBio, the regional voice of biotechnology in Northern California. She was a former Executive Director of U.C. Berkeley's Office of Technology Licensing.
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The Challenges of Developing New Drugs for Neglected Tropical Diseases

Dr. Jim McKerrow; Sandler Institute, Cal
Jan 2010
The research interests of my group fall into three broad areas. The first is analysis of structure-function relationships in proteolytic enzymes, focusing principally on cysteine and serine proteases. We began with identification and cloning of a spectrum of related proteases from primitive eukaryotes (mostly parasites), and subsequent structural analysis of these proteases bound to small molecule inhibitors. Our second major interest is identification or design of small molecule inhibitors of cysteine proteases that are involved in the pathogenesis of infectious diseases (especially those caused by tropical parasites). In this latter project, we collaborate with a consortium of laboratories within and outside UCSF in a multidisciplinary approach that includes structural analysis of enzyme targets and synthesis of small molecule inhibitors utilizing a variety of synthetic approaches or computer-based drug design. These inhibitors can be used to study the biologic function of the target proteases by "chemical knockout" and several are leads for new chemotherapy. Lastly, we also have an interest in the host response to parasites focusing specifically on schistosomiasis.We are analyzing the cellular immunology of the granulomatous response to parasite eggs as well as the parasite's exploitation of that response for transmission to a new host.
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