« The Redfield Paper Is Out (And So Are Arsenic Bacteria, It Seems) |
| How Not to Do Science Education »
June 5, 2012
Merck Finds Its Phase II Candidates For Sale on the Internet
Via Pharmalot, it appears that a former WuXi employee helped himself to samples of two Merck Phase II clinical candidates that were under evaluation. The samples were then offered for sale.
Here's a link to a Google Translate version of a Chinese news report. It looks like gram quantities were involved, along with NMR spectra, with the compounds being provided to a middleman. It's not clear who bought them from him, but the article gives the impression that someone did, was satisfied with the transaction, and wanted more. But in the meantime, Merck did pick up on an offer made by this middleman to sell one of the compounds online, and immediately went after him, which unraveled the whole scheme. (The machine translation is pretty rocky, but I did appreciate that an idiom came through: it mentions that having these valuable samples in an unlocked cabinet was like putting fish in front of a cat).
I would think that this kind of thing is just the nightmare that WuXi's management fears - and if it isn't, it should be. The cost advantage to doing business with them (and other offshore contract houses) is still real, but not as large as it used to be. Stories like this can close that price gap pretty quickly.
+ TrackBacks (0) | Category: Business and Markets | Drug Development | The Dark Side
POST A COMMENT
- RELATED ENTRIES
- AstraZeneca's Move To Hot, Happening Cambridge
- Stealing A Compound, To Set Up in China
- Tecfidera's Price
- Novartis Loses the Glivec Patent Fight in India
- ChemBark Closing Down (Update: Not Really!)
- Fake Journals - But They'd Like Real Money
- Chemical Probes Versus Drugs
- Two New Books