More Data, Better Drugs: Genetech, PatientsLikeMe Ink Groundbreaking Research Pact

Ron Leuty | BiotechSF - San Francisco Business Times | April 7, 2014

Genentech Inc. will mine the deep online patient network of PatientsLikeMe to pinpoint ways of using patients' real experience with diseases and drugs for better research. The five-year agreement is the first broad research collaboration between Cambridge, Mass.-based PatientsLikeMe and a drug company, but it also demonstrates how open-source research and social media are increasingly tapped by companies to get real-world insights into diseases and how patients respond to treatments.

PatientsLikeMe members have exchanged information about their real-world experiences with more than 2,000 diseases, including Lou Gehrig's disease, cancers, depression and multiple sclerosis. Members monitor how the change in their disease between doctor or hospital visits, document the severity of symptoms and describe how they are responding to specific treatments...