For many years pharmaceutical companies have taken a deliberate approach for creating new small molecule drugs for disease treatment. These new chemical entities and their analogs were often synthesized in large numbers and then tested for efficacy for treatment of various diseases. With the small molecule drug hit rate dropping and with recombinant protein synthesis becoming available and growing explosively, it became possible to manufacture biopharmaceuticals which could be used to treat diseases that could not have been considered previously. Many pharmaceutical companies have focused more and more of their efforts in this area, and new biopharma companies have grown around this important area. A number of large, small molecule-focused pharmaceutical companies have also purchased or merged with startup biopharmaceutical companies to acquire their pipelines and their expertise.

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