Reports of the Death of Psychiatric Drug Research Have Been Exaggerated


Forbes reports on the “boom” in psychiatric drug research that is going on, after a short period where onlookers were claiming that pharmaceutical companies were leaving the business.

“The modern drug business was built on brain medicines: Valium was the first blockbuster, selling 2 billion tablets in 1978, and Prozac defined the industry in the 1990s,” reports Forbes. And while there was talk that the pharmaceutical industry was losing interest in psychiatric drugs, in fact, “the industry is in the midst of a dramatic reversal. Last year investors poured $3.3 billion into firms that are developing drugs for brain-destroying or psychiatric illnesses, more than in any of the last ten years.”

The Coming Boom In Brain Medicines (Forbes, February 11, 2015)


  1. It seems our main stream media is really nothing but cheerleaders for big Pharma and it’s never ending pursuit to find “brain-destroying” drugs. We need to break these companies up and bring back competition so we may have hope of finding cures for real diseases instead.

    Report comment

  2. As psych drugs are the mental health industry’s cash cow, it can hardly come as a surprise to anyone that the industry is going to milk it. I would just take this as another red flag for all those people who think some kind of major paradigm shift is in the works. The drug industry can weather record million dollar civil suits, and come out of it with billion dollar investments. Well, duh. Biological psychiatry still brays, and people still listen.

    The biggest cheer leading, by the way, is coming from the mental health movement, and those people who think better mental health comes out of more spending, especially when that “better mental health” is a matter of diagnosing 25 % of the population, for the moment, with “mental illness”. Who gains? The drug industry and the paternalism that accompanies it. They can split up the cash while leaving a medicine cabinet to look after the, often adult, children. If they don’t recover, well, non-recovery, you know, or that non-recovery that calls itself recovery, as always, is good for business, and any “mental health crisis” they can come up with happens to be a gold mine for somebody.

    Report comment

  3. I hate to just repeat what everyone else is saying, but this is just an ad for the drug industry. But what would one expect? Forbes is a very conservative business magazine.

    Don’t you just love the way the author skims over that fact that antidepressants work no better than placebo? People who aren’t really depressed fake their symptoms so they can be included in drug trials????? Huh? Really bizarre.

    Report comment