Eli Lilly, Merck, Pfizer Allies to Set up Research center

Eli Lilly, Merck, Pfizer Allies to Set up Research centerThe three largest U. S. drug makers, Eli Lilly and Co., Merck & Co. and Pfizer Inc., announced on Tuesday that they have allied to set up a not-for-profit company dedicated to investigating and treating the growing problem of gastric and lung cancers in Asia.

However, the firms posted that the advantages of this initiative will be extended worldwide, as it will also include the development of a publicly available database of profiled tumour samples.

"The goal of the Asian Cancer Research Group is to improve the knowledge of cancers prevalent in Asia and to accelerate drug discovery efforts by freely sharing the resulting data with the scientific community", the companies said.

Over the next two years, Lilly, Merck and Pfizer revealed that they will create an extensive database that will be made available to researchers.

Also, it is to consist of data from approximately 2,000 tissue samples, forming it one of the biggest pharmacogenomic cancer databases yet compiled.

The companies claimed that gastric cancer is the second largest cause of cancer death in the world, engulfing more than 630,000 patients each year, more people than all cancers combined in the United States.