Monday, October 14, 2013
& Co. Inc.'s new head of R&D, Roger Perlmutter plans to refocus
and prune the pharma's pipeline of 31 Phase II and Phase III programs. But with
half of its Phase III programs near completion, the real evidence of his
handiwork may not be visible for another three to five years.
Merck has struggled more than
many of its pharma peers to fill the gap left by patent expirations for
blockbuster drugs due to late-stage discontinuations and regulatory setbacks.
Among its seven programs in registration, Merck has received complete
response letters for three, including one request for additional trials.
Additionally, since June 2011, Merck has discontinued three programs after
large Phase III trials were complete.