NEW YORK, Sept. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- The Prix Galien USA committee, responsible for awarding the most prestigious prize in biopharmaceutical research and development, today announced the 2010 winner of the Pro Bono Humanum Award for the 4th annual Prix Galien USA Awards competition. The award, recognizing exemplary and innovative efforts to improve the human condition, will be presented to UNITAID in partnership with the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) for their tremendous work combating the global HIV/AIDS epidemic.
Philippe Douste-Blazy, M.D., President of UNITAID, and President William J. Clinton, President of CHAI, will be accepting the award on behalf of their organizations. UNITAID and CHAI's efforts to reduce the price of quality medicines and diagnostics, while accelerating the pace at which these health products are made available, have resulted in the distribution of life-saving medicines to more than 456,000 people in 40 countries.
Elie Wiesel, Nobel Laureate and Prix Galien USA committee member, will present the award at a black tie ceremony at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City on September 28, 2010. The Prix Galien USA Pro Bono Humanum Award will accompany a series of other awards honoring companies who have made innovative contributions to biopharmaceutical and medical technology research and development.
"The collaboration between UNITAID and the Clinton Health Access Initiative truly embodies the spirit of the Pro Bono Award by moving us forward in improving the human condition, particularly for those affected by HIV/AIDS. The combination of innovative financing, philanthropic goals, and effective delivery of medicines makes this award and citation natural winners for the 2010 Pro Bono Award," said Gerald Weissmann, M.D., Prix Galien USA committee chair, New York University professor emeritus and editor-in-chief of The FASEB Journal. "Because of this partnership, three out of four children with AIDS are now being treated, and there has been a sharp reduction in the price of antiretroviral treatments for patients."
Each year, the Prix Galien USA committee awards a special Pro Bono Humanum Award to an individual, a company, an academic institution or a non-governmental agency that has helped to improve the human condition through the application of pharmaceutical science to problems of developing or underserved populations worldwide. Recent winners of the Pro Bono Humanum Award include: Dr. Roy Vagelos for his campaign to eradicate river blindness in 2007; Dr. Sheldon Segal and the Population Council in 2008 for their role in developing implantable hormone delivery systems and to Dr. Barry Bloom with Dr. Jeffrey Sachs in 2009 for their efforts with the Harvard School Public Health/Earth Institute to eradicate disease by understanding the immune responses to infectious diseases.
The Prix Galien recognizes the technical, scientific and clinical research skills necessary to develop innovative medicines and devices such as these, and is considered the industry's highest accolade, equivalent to the Nobel Prize. Prix Galien was first established in 1970 by French pharmacist Roland Mehl and was inaugurated in the United States in September 2007. The Prix Galien USA Award committee comprises 11 individuals including Nobel Laureates, founders of major biotech companies and editors of world-renowned biology journals. For details about the Prix Galien USA Award and Committee, or to learn more about the Awards Gala, visit www.prix-galienusa.com.
SOURCE Galien Foundation