Respiratory group joins N.C. Research Campus
By Emily Ford
KANNAPOLIS ó A nonprofit corporation that works to prevent, treat and cure respiratory diseases will locate a research center at the N.C. Research Campus.
Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute, a New Mexico-based company that specializes in studying allergies, asthma and other respiratory ailments, will move its Center for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research to Kannapolis, campus officials announced today.
Pharmacoeconomics is a scientific discipline that compares the value of one drug to another. When conducting a pharmacoeconomic study, researchers consider not only the cost of a drug but also how much it improves the quality of life.
Dr. Christopher Blanchette directs the center, which should open at the N.C. Research Campus in October.
Blanchette’s center researches the risk, cost and progression of respiratory disease and the effectiveness of pharmaceutical treatments for such ailments, according to a statement from the N.C. Research Campus.
Scientists at the center work in collaboration with government organizations such as the National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, as well as pharmaceutical manufacturers and contract research organizations.
The center’s staff study other diseases and health care issues including diabetes, epilepsy and breast cancer, according to its Web site.
Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute was founded in 1947 and employs more than 80 Ph.D.-level scientists and 500 technicians and support staff. Its 2008 budget is projected at $65 million, with funding coming from grants, contracts and philanthropy.Research areas include emphysema, lung cancer, inhalation toxicology, aerosol science, inhalation drug delivery and bronchitis.
The institute has a for-profit subsidiary called Lovelace Scientific Resources that conducts its clinical trials. Lovelace Scientific Resources works closely with the pharmacoeconomic research center that will move to Kannapolis this fall.
The N.C. Research Campus is a $1.5 billion, 350-acre biotechnology hub about to open in downtown Kannapolis. Founder David Murdock, owner of Dole Food Co. and Castle & Cooke, has partnered with several private companies as well as Duke University, the University of North Carolina System and the N.C. Community College System.