Open Source Science

David Basanta | Nature Magazine | October 20, 2011

Thanks to a friend I found about this TED video in which Dana Farber's Jay Bradner talks about something which I, and many others, believe is a very powerful idea: open source science. The talk introduces Bradner's research, where he and his colleagues are trying to find molecules that can target cancer cells that relay (have grown) dependent on certain genes. The talk has two parts, one which I liked and one that left me rather unimpressed.

The research itself does not look all that new to me, but I might lack enough background to understand the full significance. Still it looks like they are targeting certain tumour cells and leaving the rest behind so although the results could be impressive as measured by tumour size shortly after application of a treatment, the question remains whether the cancer will reoccur in a matter of months. That is the fate of all other targeted therapies I know of...