Life-Threatening Diseases Compassion through Combination Therapy Act of 2012 (H.R. 6502)

Legislation co-sponsored by Representatives Brian Bilbray (R-CA), Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), and supported by the Melanoma Research Foundation, seeks to encourage the development of so-called “significant drug combinations” by offering the carrot of an extension of marketing exclusivity.

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My Experience on Capitol Hill: Rare Disease Lobby Day

By Laura Welch

 I am a 33-year-old mother of a 2-year-old boy and wife to a wonderful US Soldier.  In July 2011 we moved from Seattle to DC. Hello sunshine!

On August 18, 2011,  I was diagnosed with Epitheliod Sarcoma (ES), a rare and aggressive form of cancer.  I did what anyone in this day and age would do; I consulted the bible that is Google!  The prognosis was bleak, to put it mildly. However, I am of the mindset that if this disease is so rare that it has little data available, I will make my own data and try not to dwell on the figures in front of me.

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Opportunity to Learn From AIDS Activists – Documentary Screenings

ACT UP and their colleagues fought for nine years before winning life-saving medications. They organized a mass movement, they took to the streets, they made art, they made noise, they made a difference. Their tools included clear demands, arresting graphics, media savvy, and an ability to learn from their mistakes and refine their strategies. And a sense of humor, when appropriate, in combination with their urgent and ethical message.

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POLITICO Pro’s Deep Dive: The Future of the FDA

The POLITICO Pro Health care team takes an in-depth look at the future and policies of the FDA.  Special guests include: Friends of Cancer Research’s Dr. Jeff Allen; The Pew Charitable Health Group’s Allan Coukell; Biotechnology Industry Organization’s Sara Radcliffe and the FDA’s Dr. Janet Woodcock.

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Report to the President on Propelling Innovation in Drug Discovery, Development, and Evaluation

On September 25, 2012, the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (“PCAST”) released a report entitled “Report to the President on Propelling Innovation in Drug Discovery, Development, and Evaluation.”

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NIH: National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS)

Christopher P. Austin, M.D.,  named director of NCATS

The mission of the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is to catalyze the generation of innovative methods and technologies that will enhance the development, testing and implementation of diagnostics and therapeutics across a wide range of human diseases and conditions.

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PDUFA V: Accelerated Approval Expansion May Outshine Rare Disease Improvements

Rare disease advocate says the focus should be on ensuring the accelerated approval expansion and surrogate endpoint guidances become FDA priorities as the rare disease drug program is set to grow under PDUFA V.

By Derrick Gingery / Email the Author / “The Pink Sheet” Sep. 17, 2012, Vol. 74, No. 38

Regulatory Update / Article # 00120917013

Congress mandated specific upgrades to FDA’s rare disease program in the new user fee legislation, but the largest impact may come through the expected changes to the accelerated approval pathway.

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September Sequester Surprise: FDA User Fees on the Chopping Block

BY ELIZABETH M. WROE & PHILIP S. BONFORTE

The threat of a delayed or deterred (re-)authorization of key Food and Drug Administration (FDA) user fee programs (hereinafter referred to as the ‘‘FDA user fees’’) caused significant angst among biomedical product stakeholders over the course of the last year and a half.

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Rare disease spurs Utah County woman to be Democratic activist

Politics » Utahn Jamie Hartley says nobody was more surprised than she that her politics leaned left.
by: By Matt Canham| The Salt Lake Tribune

Washington • Of all the Utahns elected as delegates to the Democratic National Convention, Jamie Hartley is the outlier. She isn’t a party insider or union leader, a politician or a campaign strategist.

Hartley has no real political experience at all.

But as a Utah County resident struggling with a painful genetic disorder she’s very familiar with the nation’s medical system, and that’s something she wants to bring to the big political gathering in Charlotte, N.C.

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FDA Law Blog: Congressional Interest in FDA Remains High, Even After the Enactment of FDASIA

By Kurt R. Karst 

Just before Congress recessed for the month of August, and less than a month after the July 9th enactment of the FDA Safety and Innovation Act, several FDA-related bills were placed in the hoppers in the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives.  With an election on the horizon and several other non-FDA-related issues to handle, it seems highly unlikely that Congress will be poised to tackle the FDA bills this year; however, they may provide some insight into some of the issues that will be debated in the 113th Congress come 2013.

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