Reaching Beyond the Data to Prevent Target Identification Failure

Finding new drugs and bringing them to market is a  long, research-intensive process, taking on average 10 to 12 years1 and costing between $1.5 billion and $3 billion2.


Although simple in theory the odds of getting a drug to market are low.

Data from the Centers for Medical Research (CMR) shows that less than one out of every ten drugs that enter clinical trials makes it to market.1  Data published by Clarivate Analytics shows over half of all clinical compounds fail because they are not effective against the target.3

Arguably the biggest reason for failure is that scientists fail to show a definitive link between the target and the disease.   Recently published data backs up this theory.  Retrospective analysis independently performed by AstraZeneca and Pfizer showed that this failure to establish a link accounts for 40% of the failures in their clinical trials.4,5  Data may exist to show when targets are not linked to disease, when efficacy cannot be achieved, or when toxic side effects can be expected but the data is scattered and hard to find.

Clarivate Analytics and Genetic Engineering News (GEN) will host a complimentary global webinar on Thursday, April 20 to explore new tools and techniques for target identification and lead detection, harnessing hard to acquire data and analytic tools to help understand trends. Case studies for several indications will be presented. Register now.



1         CMR Factbook. (2015).

2          DiMasi, J. A., Grabowski, H. G. & Hansen, R. W. Innovation in the pharmaceutical industry: New estimates of R&D costs. J Health Econ 47, 20-33, doi:10.1016/j.jhealeco.2016.01.012 (2016).

3          Harrison, R. K. Phase II and phase III failures: 2013-2015. Nat Rev Drug Discov 15, 817-818, doi:10.1038/nrd.2016.184 (2016).

4          Cook, D. et al. Lessons learned from the fate of AstraZeneca’s drug pipeline: a five-dimensional framework. Nat Rev Drug Discov 13, 419-431, doi:10.1038/nrd4309 (2014).

5          Morgan, P. et al. Can the flow of medicines be improved? Fundamental pharmacokinetic and pharmacological principles toward improving Phase II survival. Drug Discov Today 17, 419-424, doi:10.1016/j.drudis.2011.12.020 (2012).