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  • Business and Markets

    Anarchist Drugs For All. Yeahboy.

    I’ve had numerous requests for my opinion about this article, so here it comes: it’s largely bullshit. It’s about “a volunteer network of anarchists and hackers developing DIY medical technologies”, and I can see why Vice.com is running the article, because that drugs/anarchists/hackers combo is absolute catnip to thei… Read More
  • Drug Prices

    The Latest Drug Reimportation Idea

    It’s been a while since we talked about drug reimportation here, but it’s been back in the news recently. Drug prices are, naturally, of economic, medical, and political importance, and the administration has been making a great deal of noise about lowering them. To that end, HHS Secretary Alex Azar has announced the formation of a… Read More
  • Alzheimer's Disease

    Biogen and Eisai: Let the Alzheimer’s Arguing Commence

    Well, the tease is over: Biogen and Eisai have released data on their Alzheimer’s antibody, BAN2401. And the situation is messy, as many had feared. The top-line results are mostly positive, but there are several confounding factors that make them a matter of argument (see below). The companies were scheduled to go public with the… Read More
  • Analytical Chemistry

    Cooling Crystals is Great. Except When It Isn’t.

    If you’ve ever been around an X-ray crystallography setup, one of the constants is a tube directing a blast of chilly vapor at the crystal that’s mounted for analysis. It’s usually a stream of cold nitrogen gas, often set up as a blast of the cold stuff surrounded by a second concentric layer of dry… Read More
  • Biological News

    You Don’t Understand Long Noncoding RNAs

    Let’s confuse ourselves thoroughly and talk about long noncoding RNA. It’s just part of the menagerie of RNA species that have come to light over the last twenty years, of course, and honestly you can confuse yourself with any of them. But just asking “what are lncRNAs doing?” is enough right there. They’re lengthy str… Read More
  • Chemical News

    Automated Reaction Discovery Gets Smarter

    Here’s an interesting paper from the Cronin lab at Glasgow. It’s titled “Controlling an organic synthesis robot with machine learning to search for new reactivity”, and that title alone will make some of the readership here eager to hear more, while sending others fleeing in dismay. It seems difficult to be neutral about suc… Read More
  • Drug Development

    On Jadedness

    It’s a Friday in midsummer, so I assume that a fair percentage of the readership is not even around! So I’m not going to do a huge detailed blog post (got one of those coming on Monday, actually). Today I just wanted to go on a bit about a problem that comes with experience in… Read More
  • Biological News

    A Close Look at a Cancer Genome

    Ever since gene sequencing became feasible (for several values of “feasible”!) it’s been of great interest to look at the genetic material of cancerous cells. It’s been clear from very early on that there are many changes, mutations, rearrangements, shifts, etc. in a cancer cell’s DNA, and it’s been equally clear… Read More
  • Academia (vs. Industry)

    Pressure For Academia?

    I have enough time today for a quick question, one that’s also being asked by several people on Twitter. Back when I was a grad student, there was definite pressure on people to seek an academic position. I saw more than one group where this pressure was applied selectively to the more promising-seeming grad students/postdocs… Read More
  • Alzheimer's Disease

    The Case of Verge Genomics

    A number of people have passed along the recent press stories about Verge Genomics, a new company out of YCombinator that has just raised $32 million for neuroscience drug discovery. Now that, as literally anyone who’s ever done it can tell you, is a hard field of a hard field, and I wish Verge good… Read More
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