Friday, August 12, 2011

Cancer drug shortages threaten trials

Gearing up for a pivotal late-stage study of its lead tumor-fighting drug, Threshold Pharmaceuticals has checked all the boxes with regulators, investors, doctors and patients.
Yet one nagging question remains: Will it have enough vials of an essential generic chemotherapy drug to last throughout the trial?
Threshold isn’t alone. A national shortage of key generic cancer drugs — often used in combination with treatments like Threshold’s or to provide statistical backdrops in studies — is threatening clinical trials.
The shortfall is forcing a handful of Bay Area drug developers to develop backup plans, including stockpiling supplies.

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