'Patent to Patient' looks at regulatory delays in drug innovation

The Institute for Cancer Research, London, has released a report looking at cancer drug delivery in the NHS and the rate of drug development across different types of cancer. ‘Patent to Patient’  analysed the regulatory regime and found that NHS patients are waiting longer for new cancer drugs because of delays in taking them through clinical trials and getting them approved for use. 

Dr Angela Kukula, Director of Enterprise at The ICR and PraxisAuril Chair, said:

"Our report analyses the whole landscape of cancer drug discovery and development, in an effort to understand better where delays are occurring in taking innovative new drugs to patients, and to make recommendations about how to maximise the impact delivered by cancer research. We found that advances in research are delivering many more cancer drugs, but patients with some tumour types are benefiting from far more new treatments than others, and children with cancer are seeing much slower progress than adults.

We also found that it is taking longer to bring treatments through clinical trials and licensing, when it should be possible to develop drugs more quickly through smaller, smarter trials. And NICE could do more to prioritise the most innovative drugs - and to give drug companies confidence that they will be rewarded for taking risks when they create novel cancer treatments.

At the ICR, we believe that regulators need to be more flexible in their approach so that it is easier for pharmaceutical companies to take the risks that are required for true innovation, and academic organisations must lead on high-risk drug discovery in order to de-risk innovative drugs and encourage companies to take them forwards to patients."

The report is available to download from the ICR website