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No Imagination

Is innovation becoming a lost art in the pharmaceutical industry? A new survey of 282 pharmaceutical executives, done at the behest of clinical research organization Quintiles, found that 54 percent consider innovation to be a leading priority and 49 percent rank their overall innovation strategy as, at best, moderately effective, says Pharmalot's Ed Silverman. Sixteen percent of the executives agreed that improving innovation was the most important priority for success, and 38 percent considered it among the top priorities. Seven percent said change wasn't even needed. Almost half of those surveyed said cost was a major impediment to improving innovation strategies, Silverman says, while others cited lack of time and overly restrictive regulatory standards. "In biopharma, academic research was cited as the second most common source of ideas over the coming three years — 38 percent, to be exact," Silverman says. "Internal R&D remains the leading source of innovation as a whole, cited by 60 percent, but over the next three years, just 46 percent of the execs say internal R&D will be a good source." So how does a company go about creating an environment of innovation? Rewards are a good idea, Silverman says. The survey respondents who considered themselves "innovation leaders" said they offer financial rewards for innovative ideas.

The Scan

Not Kept "Clean and Sanitary"

A Food and Drug Administration inspection uncovered problems with cross contamination at an Emergent BioSolutions facility, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Resumption Recommendation Expected

The Washington Post reports that US officials are expected to give the go-ahead to resume using Johnson & Johnson's SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.

Canada's New Budget on Science

Science writes that Canada's new budget includes funding for the life sciences, but not as much as hoped for investigator-driven research.

Nature Papers Examine Single-Cell, Multi-Omic SARS-CoV-2 Response; Flatfish Sequences; More

In Nature this week: single-cell, multi-omics analysis provides insight into COVID-19 pathogenesis, evolution of flatfish, and more.