Looks like the Swiss have approved the sale of ImClone’s cancer drug, Erbitux.

From the WSJ:

…This is vindication for those who promoted the drug at and outside of ImClone, only to see its potential trampled in the media rush to condemn the stock sales of Martha Stewart and Sam Waksal. But any satisfaction is certainly tinged by the knowledge that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration passed up an opportunity to approve Erbitux nearly two years ago, and that tens of thousands of colorectal cancer victims have since died needlessly premature deaths.

Erbitux isn’t a miracle cure for most patients. But it will improve and extend many lives. Consider this back-of-the-envelope calculation. The American Cancer Society predicts about 57,000 Americans (or 156 per day) will die from colorectal cancer this year. Studies suggest that more than 20% of them would have responded dramatically to Erbitux in combination with chemo (a greater than 50% reduction in tumor size), while for many others the disease would have at least stabilized. “Conceivably, as many as 100 people died today that wouldn’t have if they had been able to obtain Erbitux,” says Steve Walker of the Abigail Alliance for Better Access to Developmental Drugs…

…Commissioner Mark McClellan needs to remind his bureaucrats that every day of delay has real human costs.

Not to mention 7 years of the life of Sam Waksal.

Recommended Reading:

ImClone’s Sam Waksal Should Have Read Ayn Rand’s ‘Atlas Shrugged’
If Sam Waksal had read ‘Atlas Shrugged,’ he may have walked free.

The SEC’s “Insider Trading” Witch Hunt Against ImClone’s Sam Waksal: Scapegoat for the Sins of the FDA
Observe the injustice involved here. The FDA obstructed the launch of a product; then the SEC forced the termination of that product’s primary creator. Yet it’s not any regulator but the creator — Sam Waksal — who faces jail time for helping his family mitigate regulatory destructiveness.

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