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Why is it a big mistake to link funding of R&D costs with drug prices?:

Conflicts of Interest, and the WHO evaluation of the FRIND and the PDP Plus funding proposals by the CEWG

This note provide additional context for those who are just now following the issue of conflicts of interest and the WHO Consultative Expert Working Group (CEWG) on R&D Financing.

The CEWG follows a controversial, flawed and failed effort by an earlier group, the WHO Expert Working Group (EWG) on R&D Financing, to:

The WHO EB debate over membership of the new R&D Financing consultative expert working group (CEWG)

At the end of the day on Monday, the 128 WHO Executive Board meeting took the agenda item for creation of a new R&D Financing consultative expert working group (CEWG). (Yesterday's blog on this topic is here)

World Health Organization Executive Board to create new consultative expert working group on R&D Financing

Today the WHO is expected to take up the Report by the Secretariat on "the Establishment of a consultative expert working group on research and development: financing and coordination." (link here).

Google hits by domain using search term "Gates Foundation"

The following reports the number of Google hits using the search term "gates foundation," with a site:domainname option, on January 7, 2011. The result is a count of the number of web pages (visible to Google) mentioning the Gates Foundation on a particular domain.

For example, the google search "gates foundation" identified 5,940 pages on the web site that have the exact phrase, "gates foundation."

Embedded content in television shows and films

Google hits for "health messages embedded in television" 275,000

Motivating Television Viewers to Become Organ Donors
Authors: Lauren Movius, Michael Cody, Grace Huang, Mandy Berkowitz, Susan Morgan
Corresponding Author: Lauren Movius, Annenberg School of Communication, University of Southern California,

Life Technologies funds seven $1 million medical innovation prizes

On December 14, 2010, Life Technologies Corporation, which among other things owns Ion Torrent, which sells the Ion Personal Genome Machine sequencer, announced seven new medical innovation prizes. The first three prizes are related to improvements in the Ion semiconcudtor sequencing products. Each of the three sequencer prizes is funded at $1 million, and will be awarded to contestants that can achieve the following goals:

  1. produce twice as much sequence data,

NSF, Gates Foundation policies on sharing data and intellectual property in agricultural basic research grant program (BREAD)

The US based National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation are collaborating on a program called Basic Research to Enable Agricultural Development (BREAD). A May 12, 2010 NSF announcement about the program is available here.

2011: The Year Ahead at WHO, WIPO and WTO

As 2011 unfolds, the following conferences and negotiations are expected to shape the knowledge governance landscape this year at WHO, WIPO and WTO.

    World Health Organization

Tuberculosis outcomes by WHO region and income in 2004

The graph below reports the ratio of deaths to new cases of tuberculosis in 2004, in WHO "regions by income."

Disparities in Asthma Outcomes in 2004

The following graph reports the ratio of DALYs to Prevelance for Asthma in 2004, with countries groups in WHO regions by income.

Differences in deaths for 6 cancer types in 14 WHO regions, with reference to income of region

A pdf version of this document is available here.

KEI Research Note 2010:5
December 23, 2010

Differences in ratio of deaths to new cases for 6 cancer types in 14 WHO regions, with reference to income of region


Cancer: Annual deaths compared to new cases in 2004, for 16 types of cancer and 4 World Bank income groups

The following table compares the annual deaths from cancer, to the annual incidence of the disease, broken down by cancer type and income group. The data in the table is annual deaths divided by annual incidence, show as a ratio.

For several types of cancer, there is not much difference in the reported ratios, between different income groups. For other types of cancer, the differences are large, and in favor of patients living in higher income countries. Cancer types with the largest disparities by income include the following:

  • Mouth and oropharynx cancers

Ratio of year 2000 breast cancer deaths to new breast cancer patients in Europe, by country and country income

The following graph presents the year 2000 raw mortality rate of breast cancer patients in 36 European Countries. The graph compares the ratio of breast cancer deaths to the annual incidence of breast cancer, to the per capita incomes in those countries, all based upon year 2000 data.

USTR's Request for Comments on ACTA

USTR has issued a request for comments on ACTA. The deadline for submissions is February 15, 2011. The notice gives very little guidance regarding the issues the USTR would like addressed in the comments.

[Billing Code 3190-W1-P]

Office of the United States Trade Representative

Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement: Request for Comments from the Public

Agency: Office of the United States Trade Representative

Action: Request for written submissions from the public

Notes from meeting with USTR on the TPP IPR chapter

Today USTR provided some additional insight into negotiations of a regional, Asia-Pacific trade agreement, known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement. The USTR web page on the TPP negotiations is At present, the TPP negotiators include Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Chile, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam. Japan and Canada have expressed interest in joining the negotiations, and USTR clearly would like to design an agreement that will be open to other countries. Our discussions focused on the intellectual property chapter in the agreement.

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