RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC--(Marketwire - June 17, 2008) - A recently released study by Cutting Edge Information, "Medical Affairs: Delivering Strategic Value" (, reveals that pharmaceutical companies dedicate 49% of their medical affairs' budgets to functions involving the interaction with thought leaders. On average, medical affairs dedicates 19% of its budget to MSL programs, 16% to thought-leader activities and 14% to funding investigator-initiated trials.

In all these functions establishing ties with strategically important physicians in the greater medical community is a paramount concern. This large cumulative budget dedication indicates that medical affairs has largely shifted from a department that just provides scientific field-support to one which also establishes strategic relationships.

"With pipelines and budgets shrinking and many pharmaceutical companies fretting about where the next big idea is going to come from, establishing relationships and partnerships with the leading minds in the medical community has become a large part of companies' clinical strategy," says research team leader, Elio Evangelista. "Companies now realize that they can supplement a dearth of ideas in-house by encouraging investigators with that great new idea concerning one of their products to come to them. Government money is growing scarcer and companies are ready to step in and fund fruitful research."

Many MSL groups now focus on establishing strong relationships with thought leaders who will help with company research or provide their own ideas. Thought leader management teams focus on providing the tools and information thought leaders need, whether the task is leading an investigation, or holding a scientific discussion. In all facets, medical affairs should be involved in establishing relationships to promote innovative clinical development.

Findings provide benchmarks to help companies improve the efficiency of their medical affairs efforts. Research covers the following highlights:

--  Surveyed companies' decision-making processes regarding medical
    affairs structure and internal alignment
--  The effect of globalization on companies' medical affairs practices
--  Medical affairs departments' sources of funding
--  Benchmarks for spending levels for thought leader development, MSL
    programs, medical publications, medical education, medical information and
    investigator-initiated trials
--  Impact that various regulations have had on companies' operations

Download a free summary of "Medical Affairs: Delivering Strategic Value" or purchase the report at:

Contact Information: CONTACT: Elio Evangelista 919-433-0214