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European Pharmaceutical Contractor

Competing with Big Pharma

Good ideas for new drugs can come from anywhere. There was a time – now it seems like ancient history – when virtually all ideas came from the R&D departments of large pharmaceutical companies. Today, they often come from research carried out by dedicated groups of scientists at universities and small and medium-sized biotech firms, or even ‘virtual’ research groups connected by the internet.

Regardless of how it’s achieved, coming up with a concept for a new drug is not a random event. It starts with deciding what questions to ask in order to identify potential targets for a disease, and later focuses on developing strategies to find effective candidates that selectively affect those targets. Through hard work and trial and error, thousands of labs across the UK are developing new candidates every day. Thankfully, with some regularity, one scientist will turn to his or her colleagues and say, “I think we’ve got something here.” Then what?


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Mark Crane joined Ricerca as Vice President, Business Development and Marketing in June 2007. Mark has overseen the development of the new Ricerca ‘IP to IND’ brand, as well as the development of the website and sales literature. Prior to joining Ricerca, Mark served as Vice President, Sales and Marketing, for both Bridge Global Pharmaceutical Services and Quest Pharmaceutical Services. Mark was also a Vice President, of Global Business Development, Preclinical/Discovery Services for MDS Pharmaceutical Services, and held various posts at MDS Panlabs, AVANTEC, Inc and the Perkin Elmer Corporation. He holds a BS degree in Health Education/Community Health from Western Connecticut State University at Danbury.

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