March 21, 2019

This one comes out of the past, but it is about a fear as old as time . . . or at least as old as Merck, namely that testing in animals does little to predict efficacy or safety in humans.  Actually, check that. It is actually the rule rather than the exception: Testin...

January 25, 2019

Imagine you have discovered a hit compound to treat drug addiction.  Before you drop $1 billion on its development, wouldn’t you want to handicap the odds of its success as best you can?  As we well know we do this poorly, but as the age of machine learning has ta...

October 18, 2018

Some autoimmune diseases, like lupus, affect multiple tissues, but some, like inflammatory bowel disease, affect only specific types.  A new study reveals that HDAC7 controls tissue-specific autoimmunity in othertissues via its action in the thymus, a mechanism which y...

October 18, 2018

The pharmaceutical industry has long stayed humble with their rules for successful drug development: "We’re not bigger than the game!" "We will follow rules even if we don’t understand why they work!" Chris Lipinski’s Rule of 5  is a cornerstone, of course, but only ki...

September 12, 2018

Drug repurposing is seen to be a major growth area in the drug development field because it trades the unsolved problem of attrition for the seemingly solvable problem of finding a new use for an old, already-approved drug.  But maybe that’s not an easier problem?! A r...

September 12, 2018

 Roche and PTC’s Spinal Muscular Atrophy clinical drug trials were waylaid by an unexpected tissue specific effect. After the trial had already started (and 100s of millions of dollars already spent), an unexpected activity was found in the eyes (retinas) of monkeys on...

September 5, 2018

Rare variations in genomic data have long been the bugaboo of computational biologists, those soldiers at the forefront of personalized medicine. These needle-in-the-haystack mutations are nearly impossible to detect by traditional data science approaches (genomics, GW...

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