RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC--(Marketwire - May 15, 2008) - According to a recent study by Cutting Edge Information, 40% of organizations put their medical affairs division at the forefront of developing their thought leaders. The report, "Pharmaceutical Opinion Leader Management: Cultivating Today's Influential Physicians for Tomorrow," examines the ways that pharmaceutical companies are developing and managing thought leader relationships (http://www.PharmaOpinionLeaders.com).

Putting medical affairs at the head of thought leader development helps to ensure that all of a company's interactions with influential thought leaders closely adhere to the strict OIG guidelines. To encourage full compliance, many companies have built firewalls to eliminate any direct links between the commercial side and the scientific side of the business. In turn, companies have also shifted thought leader development efforts away from commercial teams and into medical affairs departments.

Companies of all sizes, including pharmaceutical industry's largest most influential organizations, are committed to staying within industry guidelines while interacting with key opinion leaders. "Each pharmaceutical company is structured differently to best suit its own needs. However, they are all interested in staying within the boundaries outlined by the regulatory bodies," says Elio Evangelista, research team leader at Cutting Edge Information.

"Pharmaceutical Opinion Leader Management: Cultivating Today's Influential Physicians for Tomorrow" is a study of 41 pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device companies' thought leader management structures, resources, processes and activities. The report includes detailed segmentation and funding data collected from top companies, such as Pfizer, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Schering-Plough and Novartis.

Download a free summary of "Pharmaceutical Opinion Leader Management: Cultivating Today's Influential Physicians for Tomorrow" or purchase the report at: http://www.cuttingedgeinfo.com/pharmaopinionleaders/index.htm#body

Contact Information: CONTACT: Elio Evangelista (919) 433-0214