efficient, large-scale clinical research in the United States, once basic research has led to the development of new therapeutic approaches. The European adeptness is due to many factors.

Table 3.1 Analysis of Nobel Prizes Presented for Immunology Research

Prize

Laureate

Citizenship

Research Done In

Currently

1951

Max Theiler

South Africa

South Africa

-

1957

Daniel Bovet

Switzerland

Switzerland

-

1960

F. Macfarlane Burnet

Australia

Australia

-

 

Peter Medawar

Great Britain

Great Britain

-

1972

Rodney R. Porter

Great Britain

Great Britain

-

 

Gerald M. Edelman

United States

United States

United States

1977

Rosalyn S. Yalow

United States

United States

United States

1980

George D. Snell

United States

United States

-

 

Jean Dausset

France

France

France

 

Baruj Benecerraf

United States

United States

United States

1984

Cesar Milstein

Great Britain

Great Britain

-

 

Georges J.F. Kohler

Germany

Switzerland

-

 

Niels K. Jerne

Denmark

Switzerland

-

1987

Susumu Tonegawa

Japan

Switzerland/United States

United States

1996

Peter C. Doherty

Australia

Australia/United States

United States

 

Rolf M. Zinkernagel

Switzerland

Australia/United States/Switzerland

Switzerland

Source: Analysis conducted by panel members for this report.

In some cases, it is because of the centralized government control of medical schools and research institutions. In others, it is because physicians are able to maintain a single life–long comprehensive record of patients, which makes it easier to randomize individual patients or practice. Furthermore, in some countries, such as the United Kingdom, clinical-trial methodology has been a special interest of the medical research council and by a national policy that uses randomized trials as a way to introduce new treatment or diagnostic tests.

3.4 Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Firms

Because of the nature of the venture-capital industry in the United States, the greater flexibility of this industry, and its willingness to fund small biotechnology startup firms, particularly those involved in molecular biology and recombinant-DNA technology, there has been a remarkable growth in biotechnology and a gradual shift of those firms into large pharmaceutical firms. In the last 7 years, although the number of biotechnology companies worldwide has been rather static at approximately 1,275, the amount of money spent on research and development by the industry has almost doubled from $4.9 billion to $9.9 billion (Ernst & Young, 1998a). The result of this phenomenal growth has been the creation of a new source of employment for PhD and MD trainees in immunology, which has attracted many



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement