Courage Under Fire
Gleevec?s discovery, development, and launch was a momentous experience that broke records at every stage: scientists delivering dramatic product efficacy never seen before in the history of cancer treatment; Novartis teams pulling together to greatly accelerate clinical trials, and rapid regulatory approvals. It seemed a perfect story. Indeed, to an outside observer, it appeared that the events shaping the process that brought the extraordinary product to patients with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) were anxiety free. In reality, challenges at every step demanded strong leadership, expertise, intuition, and courage. The book "The Magic Cancer Bullet", tells the story behind the development of Gleevec (imatinib), and the difficult choices he and his colleagues made to develop a drug that appeared to help only a small population. Approximately 6,650 people over the age of ten are diagnosed with CML each year in the United States, representing 1.3 per 100,000 worldwide.