We wrote a few days ago on the disappointing discontinuation of Pfizer's Exubera, the first inhaled insulin product.
The always-insightful Dr Derek Lowe at In the Pipeline has an excellent commentary on this case, including his own take on the futility of putting lipstick on a pig:
1. Marketing isn't everything. The next time someone tells you about how drug companies can sell junk that people don't need through their powerful, money-laden sales force, spare a thought for Pfizer. The biggest drug company in the world, with the biggest sales force and the biggest cash reserves, couldn't move this turkey. People didn't want it, and they didn't buy it.
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People in the medical, pharmacy, and nursing professions - except those who personally take daily injections - often pooh-pooh and minimize the complaints of patients who dread taking required daily shots, of insulin or any other medication.
Pfizer, and yes, all the other companies who are still working to find other - more patient-friendly - ways to give meds than by injection will continue to do so. That withdrawl is a bump, an expensive one for Pfizer, but one that is often necessary to bring cutting-edge drugs that the public wants, to market .
Hmm, wasn't this the inhalable insulin developed at UM and bought by Pfizer?