Date : December 12, 1994


As 1995 approaches, changing economic forces in the pharmaceutical industry are presenting its scientists with tough challenges, both professional and scientific, according to researchers, company officials, and other observers.

Financial setbacks and shifting business dynamics, such as mergers and takeovers, have caused companies to drastically downsize their work force in recent years, they say, with more cuts anticipated. "There were some 40,000 layoffs through the entire industry in the last two to 21/2 years, and the industry will become leaner still in the years to come," predicts Robert Ruffolo, Jr., vice president and director of pharmacological sciences departments at Philadelphia-based SmithKline Beecham Laboratories.

For scientists surviving the carnage, observers maintain, the pressure is on to focus on novel ideas and to increase efficiency in discovering and producing new drugs. "Innovation has to be part of everybody's job description," stresses Mary...

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