A biopharma startup believes that when it comes to deciding what conditions it should develop drugs to treat, the decision should be left to a public vote.
New York based Transparency Life Sciences has launched a second crowdsourcing tool that asks users to choose from 58 clinical stage compounds posted by the NIH’s U.S. National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences. They can follow links to background information about each of the compounds and try different variations. It does caution users that the compounds they help select may become development projects for the business, according to its website. For any development projects it selects, it plans to use its inaugural crowdsourcing platform launched earlier this year for building the clinical trials.
Instructions on the company’s website add some guidance:
Please review the list andidentify the compounds you believe have potential for further development. Once you have reviewed enough information to assess the compound, complete an Indication Finder for each compound of interest, telling us how you think we should develop the compound along with the basis for your recommendations. Feel free to provide your views on multiple compounds. Happy hunting!Advertisement
The survey is designed to help identify new uses for drugs that have stalled in development. Tomasz Sablinski and Marc Foster are the co-founders of Transparency Life Sciences. The company takes the view that applying crowdsourcing principles to the drug development process could greatly reduce the $1 billion estimated cost to bring a drug to market and shake up the clinical trial process.
“Our approach is based on crowdsourcing for indication selection and clinical trial design and uses 21st century telemonitoring and data collection technologies to dramatically reduce the cost of clinical trials,” Foster said in a company statement.
Earlier this year the company launched Protocol Builder. The idea is that individuals submit ideas to create an efficient clinical trial and get a monetary award. It is seeking a more patient-centered approach with the hope that it will be easier to recruit candidates.
There has been a great deal of interest in crowdsourced clinical trials to help pare down the cost, illustrated by Pfizer’s attempt. But there is some skepticism that the approach is quite some ways from away being accepted by the pharmaceutical industry.
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