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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release February 21, 1996
      Vice President Gore Says Meeting With Pharmaceutical Firms,
      AIDS Researchers An Important Step in Fight Against Disease

Highlighting his and President Clinton's commitment to AIDS drug development, Vice President Gore met Tuesday (2/20) with pharmaceutical company representatives and leading government researchers. He said the private and public sectors should accelerate their joint effort to find and develop as quickly as possible AIDS vaccines, therapeutics, and microbicides.

Attending the meeting were representatives of 11 pharmaceutical companies and leading AIDS researchers and officials from the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Defense, and the Food and Drug Administration. They discussed ways to accelerate the development of AIDS vaccines, therapeutics, and microbicides.

"This meeting was an important step in strengthening the government-industry partnership that is essential to finding and developing effective treatments -- and ultimately a cure -- for AIDS," Vice President Gore said. "We are committed to marshalling our best minds and resources in the fight against AIDS."

At the December 6, 1995, White House Conference on HIV and AIDS, President Clinton asked Vice President Gore to convene this meeting to "identify all the ways in which we might accelerate the development of vaccines, therapeutics, and microbicides that can protect people from HIV and the infections it causes." The meeting reflects President Clinton's commitment to bring the AIDS epidemic to an end.

In his three years in office, President Clinton has increased funding for AIDS research by 26 percent, expedited AIDS drug approval, and strengthened the Office of AIDS Research at the National Institutes of Health.

At the conclusion of the two-hour meeting, Vice President Gore announced the following steps:

The Administration will join with pharmaceutical manufacturers, health insurance companies and other third-party payers, and patient advocacy organizations to develop a collaborative system of clinical trials of AIDS drugs that have been approved by the FDA under expedited procedures to determine the best uses and the long-term effectiveness of those drugs.

The Administration will work with international organizations -- such as the World Bank -- to increase investment in AIDS vaccine development and trials worldwide.

The Administration will help facilitate the development of microbicides to enable women to protect themselves from HIV infection.

The Vice President will facilitate ongoing discussions between the government and the pharmaceutical industry to identify promising areas of AIDS research that the government can support in order to stimulate private sector investment in the next generation of AIDS vaccines, therapeutics, and microbicides.

The Food and Drug Administration will pursue additional measures to increase the number of anti-HIV therapeutics with pediatric indications.

Participants in Vice President Gore's Meeting with Pharmaceutical Companies and AIDS Researchers 2/20/96

The following pharmaceutical company representatives participated in the February 20 meeting on AIDS drug development with Vice President Gore:

Anne-Marie Corrier President, Chief Executive Officer BIOSYN

Manuel Navia, PhD Vice President, Senior Scientist Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Michael Riordan President, Chairman
Gilead Sciences

Joseph Pittelli Senior Vice President for Clinical Research Wyeth-Ayerst Research

George Morrow Group Vice President,
Commercial Operations Glaxo Wellcome, Inc.

Dan Hoth Senior Vice President,
Chief Operating Officer
Cell Genesys, Inc.

Peter Johnson President, Chief Executive Officer Agouron Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Patrick Zenner President,
Chief Executive Officer Hoffman-La Roche

Rajen Dalal Vice President for Corporate Planning and Business Development
Chiron Corporation

David Pizzuti
Vice President for Anti-Infective Development and Medical Affairs
Abbott Laboratories

Eve Slater Senior
Vice President for Clinical and Regulatory Development