One new drug promises to stop cancer from spreading to other organs. Another would treat blood cancer. A third would use the body’s immune system to kill tumours.
All three show encouraging results, and need just one more step to be approved for use in the United States. The drugs have something else in common: They were created in China.
For years, China’s drug industry concentrated on replicating Western medicines. Getting new drugs approved was a frustrating and time-consuming process. Companies thought ploughing millions of dollars into research and development was risky and stuck to safer revenue streams.
The country is now pushing to play a bigger role in the global drug industry. Millions of people in China have cancer or diabetes, and the government has made pharmaceutical innovation a national priority. Officials have promised to speed up drug approvals, and to reverse a brain drain by luring scientists back home. The authorities are providing land, grants and tax breaks, and investing in research. The three new drugs will have to clear U.S. regulatory hurdles. If they do, they can stand as proof of China’s growing ability to produce cutting-edge treatments, part of a broader transformation of the country’s economy as it moves into higher-value and increasingly complex sectors.....Read more
Source web page:The Hindu