More Companies Join NIH Effort to "Teach Old Drugs New Tricks"

Five Additional Pharmaceutical Companies Join New NIH/NCATS Initiative
June 18, 2012 – Last week, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced that five more pharmaceutical companies have joined its Discovering New Therapeutic Uses for Existing Molecules program that matches researchers with existing compounds not currently on the market to test for new therapeutic uses. Through this program, the NIH helps facilitate the crowdsourcing of compounds that have cleared several critical steps in the development process (including human safety tests) but for whatever reason, industry has not completed clinical testing and the products never went to market. This new initiative provides scientists with the opportunity to work with these compounds in new ways to see if they can become new disease treatments or therapies.
Abbott, Bristol-Myers Squibb, GlaxoSmithKline, Janssen Pharmaceutical Research & Development, LLC, and Sanofi have joined Pfizer, AstraZeneca, and Eli Lilly in this innovative approach to research. With the addition of these companies, the total number of compounds available has more than doubled to nearly 60 since the program's launch in May.
The NIH, via its National Center for Advancing Translational Science (NCATS), will provide up to $20 million in Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 to fund two- to three-year research grants for scientists who want to participate in this program.
For more information:
NIH Press Release: Five more pharmaceutical companies join NIH initiative to speed therapeutic discovery
Science Insider article: Five More Companies Join NIH's Drug Reuse Program
PAN's article on the program's launch: New $20 Million NIH Program Aims to Uncover New Uses for Existing Drugs