Professor of Public Policy and Corporate Management in the Aetna Chair, Emeritus
This article characterizes the activities required to launch a new
pharmaceutical molecule into the market, summarizes studies that have attempted to
pinpoint the research and development costs incurred per approved new molecule,
and analyzes the various critiques levied against published R&D cost estimates. It
finds that by any reckoning, R&D costs per approved molecule have risen sharply
over time, most likely at a rate of approximately 7 percent per year after stripping
out the effects of general economic inflation.
Scherer, F.M. "R&D Costs and Productivity in Biopharmaceuticals." HKS Faculty Research Working Paper Series RWP11-046, December 2011.