What is the value and potential of Penta? An interview with Elizabeth Robinson

28 Sep, 2023

Interview with Elizabeth Robinson, member of Penta Foundation Board of Directors. It is taken from Penta’s 2022 Annual Social Report.

What did you see in Penta that led you to believe that there is potential for innovation and growth?

“I believe there is a huge potential for innovation and growth in Penta. Infectious diseases are becoming an increasing global health issue and we have seen huge advances in innovative medicines including the new vaccine technologies used effectively for COVID-19. However, children and pregnant women were among the last to have access to these. Penta can play a key role in accelerating access to innovated medicines through its dedication to paediatric clinical trials.

What is the value of Penta? And why is independent research an asset for the medical community?

“Mothers and children are particularly vulnerable populations for infectious diseases, however they are often left out of the traditional pharmaceutical industry sponsored clinical trials for the regulatory approval of new medicines. Penta’s dedication and long history of activity in the area of paediatric clinical trials is essential in this neglected area. The historic dedication of Penta as an independent research network has made significant progress toward the availability of HIV medication for children and we are also seeing the positive impact in the other disease areas where Penta is working. The work of Penta has also shed new light on the different ways in which diseases affect small children compared to adults.”

How do you see the future of Penta? What challenges and what opportunities are there on the horizon to achieve Penta’s vision of better health for mothers and children?

“I see Penta expanding its research into new areas of infectious diseases and into the area of antimicrobial resistance. A continuing challenge is to engage the regulators in order to facilitate clinical trials in children and mothers. A further challenge is to incentivise the pharma industry to address the paediatric and pregnant women population much earlier in drug development.”