Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Farming Plants for Pharmaceuticals Still Promising

15.07.2004


Despite challenging obstacles, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration views plant-made pharmaceuticals as a highly promising means of building and securing the world’s drug supply, said FDA Acting Commissioner Lester Crawford at the Institute of Food Technologists Annual Meeting and Food Expo here this week.

Speaking at a special forum on the topic Tuesday, Crawford explained that the FDA is working closely with the USDA’s Animal Plant Health Inspection Service to monitor and keep isolated plant-made pharmaceuticals crops from conventional food crops.

“We want to regulate [plant-made pharmaceuticals] in such a way that public health is not put in jeopardy, but we want to go about that in a way that won’t impede development because we think this is an industry that offers great promise,” said Crawford.



Plants have become a focus for production of pharmaceuticals because of their complex biology and similarity of their cellular structures to human cells.

The economics of producing such plants are also very attractive, costing potentially only 10 percent that of traditional biotech medicines, said Mike Phillips, vice president of the Biotechnology Industry Corporation.

Research on growing plants for pharmaceuticals has focused primarily on alfalfa, corn, duck weed, rice, safflower and tobacco, according to the panel, with the plants offering the potential for offering treatments for diseases ranging from Alzheimer’s disease and cancer, to cystic fibrosis and spinal cord injuries, among many others. “The possibilities are endless,” said Phillips. “Of course, many will fail, but you keep looking for the one to take to market that makes all of the research and development worthwhile.”

Crawford added that the plant-made pharmaceuticals could offer needed relief as the FDA stretches itself to monitor manufacturing facilities around the world that provide food to this country. “As this industry develops, I think it will be a very useful adjunct to the security and integrity of the world drug supply,” said Crawford.

Concerns persist that pharmaceutical crops could be easily mistaken for conventional crops and mixed into the food supply, said Jeff Barach, vice president of special products for the National Food Processors Association. But limiting production to non-food crops would severely limit drug-making potential. “If companies were limited to tobacco or duck weed, the funding would evaporate and the promise for this would end overnight,” he said.

The Institute of Food Technologists Annual Meeting and Food Expo is the world’s largest annual food science and ingredient conference, delivering comprehensive, cutting-edge research and opinion from food science-, technology-, marketing- and business-leaders. Now in it’s 64th year, the IFT Annual Meeting and Food Expo attracts up to 20,000 attendees and 1,000 exhibiting companies. The convention runs through Friday.

| newswise
Further information:
http://www.ift.org

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht New technique for in-cell distance determination
19.03.2019 | Universität Konstanz

nachricht Dalian Coherent Light Source reveals hydroxyl super rotors from water photochemistry
19.03.2019 | Chinese Academy of Sciences Headquarters

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Stellar cartography

The Potsdam Echelle Polarimetric and Spectroscopic Instrument (PEPSI) at the Large Binocular Telescope (LBT) in Arizona released its first image of the surface magnetic field of another star. In a paper in the European journal Astronomy & Astrophysics, the PEPSI team presents a Zeeman- Doppler-Image of the surface of the magnetically active star II Pegasi.

A special technique allows astronomers to resolve the surfaces of faraway stars. Those are otherwise only seen as point sources, even in the largest telescopes...

Im Focus: Heading towards a tsunami of light

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology and the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have proposed a way to create a completely new source of radiation. Ultra-intense light pulses consist of the motion of a single wave and can be described as a tsunami of light. The strong wave can be used to study interactions between matter and light in a unique way. Their research is now published in the scientific journal Physical Review Letters.

"This source of radiation lets us look at reality through a new angle - it is like twisting a mirror and discovering something completely different," says...

Im Focus: Revealing the secret of the vacuum for the first time

New research group at the University of Jena combines theory and experiment to demonstrate for the first time certain physical processes in a quantum vacuum

For most people, a vacuum is an empty space. Quantum physics, on the other hand, assumes that even in this lowest-energy state, particles and antiparticles...

Im Focus: Sussex scientists one step closer to a clock that could replace GPS and Galileo

Physicists in the EPic Lab at University of Sussex make crucial development in global race to develop a portable atomic clock

Scientists in the Emergent Photonics Lab (EPic Lab) at the University of Sussex have made a breakthrough to a crucial element of an atomic clock - devices...

Im Focus: Sensing shakes

A new way to sense earthquakes could help improve early warning systems

Every year earthquakes worldwide claim hundreds or even thousands of lives. Forewarning allows people to head for safety and a matter of seconds could spell...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

International Modelica Conference with 330 visitors from 21 countries at OTH Regensburg

11.03.2019 | Event News

Selection Completed: 580 Young Scientists from 88 Countries at the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting

01.03.2019 | Event News

LightMAT 2019 – 3rd International Conference on Light Materials – Science and Technology

28.02.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Levitating objects with light

19.03.2019 | Physics and Astronomy

New technique for in-cell distance determination

19.03.2019 | Life Sciences

Stellar cartography

19.03.2019 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>