• October 9, 2002

    Nobel Time!

    Congratulations to John Fenn, Koichi Tanaka, and Kurt Wuerthrich for sharing the 2002 Chemistry Nobel. The common theme is characterization of proteins and other macromolecules, and the discoveries are (respectively) electrospray ionization for mass spectrometry, laser desorption for the same, and 2-D NMR techniques. I’ll write more on this t… Read More
  • The Bigger They Are

    The Chemistry Nobel this year doesn’t include any household names, even by the standards of my branch of the science. But (as I said this morning,) I think the award is a good one. The ability to deal with large molecules like proteins as molecules is a relatively recent development. Before these sorts of methods… Read More
  • October 8, 2002

    Genetic Optimism

    he genetic news of the day, subject of good-sized headlines in the Wall St. Journal and elsewhere, is an upcoming paper in PNAS on a candidate cancer gene called DBC2. Some of these abbreviations are pretty recondite, but not this one – it stands for “Deleted in Breast Cancer,” which is pretty tame by the… Read More
  • October 7, 2002

    Idle Hands

    Events don’t leave me much time to blog tonight, and I’m staying busy at work as well. Without going into job-terminating levels of detail, I’ll say that we’re at the stage now where we not only have to worry about what molecules to make, but how we’re going to make them. Those of you in… Read More
  • October 6, 2002

  • October 3, 2002

    Am I Blue?

    Most of you have probably seen this link by now, but for those who haven’t, here’s Montana’s blue Senate candidate. The picture would seem to do a reasonable job of rendering his color, but I suspect that he’s more gray than blue. Still, no doubt the effect is quite striking in person. Colloidal silver (very… Read More
  • October 2, 2002

    Voluntary. . .For Now

    HHS has fired a warning shot across the bow of the drug industry. These draft guidelines don’t have the force of law behind them (yet,) but the implication seems clear: shape up, or they will. This election cycle has seen some grandstanding against the drug companies (and without foreign policy intruding, there would surely have… Read More
  • October 1, 2002

    Silver Tongues, Golden Hands?

    I’ve been thinking more about Sam Waksal’s interesting career (see the September 29 post below, and this link for an online version of the story – thanks to Charles Murtaugh for coming up with it.) What I’m specifically wondering about is the phenomenon of the silver-tongued hot-talking scientist that he represents. Charles… Read More
  • Overpatenting?

    There’s an article in the latest New Republic on innovation in the drug industry. As far as I’m concerned, it draws good conclusions from faulty premises (which, admittedly, is a lot better than drawing bad ones from a good starting point!) The author, Nicholas Thompson, says that shares in the pharmaceuticals index, meanwhile, are down… Read More
  • September 30, 2002

    Where Credit’s Due

    My post from September 18th (“As Others See Us”) on Alan Murray’s Wall St. Journal column drew some interesting mail. I quoted a line of his: “Almost no politician in America is willing to stand up and utter this simple truth: The nation’s pharmaceutical makers have done more to extend and improve the lives of… Read More
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