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PhRMA: More than 850 medicines in development for diseases that disproportionately affect women

WASHINGTON — More than 800 drugs are in development for diseases that affect women, according to a pharmaceutical industry lobbying group.

The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America released a list of 851 treatments for diseases that disproportionately or exclusively affect women, such as rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, depression, osteoporosis and age-related macular degeneration. All the medicines are either in clinical trials or awaiting review by the Food and Drug Administration, PhRMA said. About 90% of the people in the United States with lupus, migraines and fibromyalgia are women, while women having heart attacks also experience markedly different symptoms from men.

“As recently as a couple [of] decades ago, there was a basic assumption that what was good medically for men was good for women in almost every case,” PhRMA president and CEO John Castellani said. “Today, our increasing knowledge of the less obvious differences between men and women is providing great promise for new and better treatments that will benefit both sexes.”

The drugs in development include 139 for cancers, 38 for multiple sclerosis and 22 for osteoporosis.

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