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News Worms


Trump nominates Gottlieb to head FDA

Trump nominates Gottlieb to head FDA

Gottlieb has longstanding ties to the drug industry, serving as a consultant or board member for several companies, including GlaxoSmithKline and Vertex Pharmaceuticals.

"Scott Gottlieb is entangled in an unprecedented web of Big Pharma ties", says Michael Carome, director of the Public Citizen's Health Research Group, an advocacy group.

Gottlieb, 44, served as chief policy adviser to the CMS administrator in 2004, and as FDA deputy commissioner for medical and scientific affairs under President George W. Bush, from 2005 to 2007. Those alternatives included Jim O'Neill, a libertarian and a strong supporter of "progressive approval", or allowing drugs to be approved based on safety before their effectiveness has been established, according to Forbes. Gottlieb's experience also drew sharp criticism from consumer advocates who said he is too deeply tied to the industry.

If confirmed as the 23rd commissioner of the FDA, Gottlieb would replace cardiologist Robert Califf, MD, who tenured his resignation in January after just 10 months on the job.

"Scott knows how the agency works and he will move it forwards, though maybe not always in ways the agency is comfortable with", John Taylor, a former acting FDA deputy commissioner, told Reuters.

"We look forward to working with Dr. Gottlieb in his new role and engaging with him and the Agency as they seek to modernize the drug discovery and review process and advance competition in the biopharmaceutical market", noted PhRMA president and CEO Stephen J. Ubl. "He believes in the power of innovation to improve the quality of patient care and has the insight and experience to make it possible", said David Mott, General Partner and head of NEA's healthcare investing practice in the press release. Similarly, pharma/biotech news site Fierce went with the headline "Trump picks industry favorite Gottlieb to run FDA".

Gottlieb graduated from Mount Sinai School of Medicine and also studied Economics at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut.

Diana Zuckerman, PhD, president of the National Center for Health Research, stated that Trump could have made a worse decision. "The Senate must reject the nomination and demand a nominee who is better suited to protect public health", according to the statement.

However, not everyone is keen about Gottlieb's nomination reports NPR.

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