FDA on track to surpass total new drug approvals from 2016

Food and Drug Administration new drug approvals are rebounding this year, following slowdown in 2016, reports Reuters.

The agency approved 21 new prescription drugs so far in 2017, set to surpass the 22 total new drugs approved in all of 2016. At this time last year, the FDA had only approved nine new prescription medications, according to the report.

Many drugmakers are in the late stages of developing new drugs targeting rare diseases for small patient populations. QuintilesIMS projects this mature drug pipeline will cause an average of 40 to 45 new drug launches annually through 2021, according to the report.

"[W]hile there might be more approvals, the total number of people getting new drugs is probably not going to up hugely because these are more specific, personalized treatments," Hilary Thomas, chief medical adviser at KPMG, told Reuters.

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