5. The FDA hates cartoons

The FDA has proposed an experiment to measure whether the use of animation in DTC drug advertising has effects beyond just getting you to look at the TV. Specifically, how does the use of an animated character to represent the patient, condition, feeling, etc. affect the retention of important drug information such as benefits and side effects? The agency put the proposal out for comment last week and let’s just say that if the FDA is skeptical of the industry’s motives, the feeling appears mutual. Several comments expressed concern over such a specific experiment informing FDA guidance and policy. One comment posited that the research “may be unnecessary for the proper performance of the FDA’s functions.” “On the contrary,” began the FDA’s response. It seems they disagree.