big pharma

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English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Noun[edit]

big pharma (uncountable)

  1. (business, pejorative, sometimes capitalized) Large, prosperous pharmaceutical firms collectively, understood as a business group having significant economic, political, or social influence.
    • 1994 Sep. 26, "Biotech," BusinessWeek (retrieved 10 Oct 2013):
      "Biotech's only got about $1.5 billion in partnering funds today, but big pharma is spending $25 billion in R&D" each year with marginal results, notes Burrill.
    • 2006 June 19, Daniel Williams, "Drugs Before Diagnosis?," Time:
      Critics were indignant that a potentially dangerous drug was being used on a hunch, and suspected the influence of big pharma and its drive to expand its markets.
    • 2012, James Le Fanu, ‘Bitter Pills to Swallow’, Literary Review, issue 399:
      The driving force, and substantial beneficiary, of this mass medicalisation is of course the pharmaceutical industry, or Big Pharma as it has pejoratively become known.

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