A drug needs to pass quite a few hurdles before it gets to the market.
The Conversation/Wes Mountain
Only around 10% of new drugs in development make it onto the market. A drug needs to go through animal trials, and then four phases of human trials to be deemed suitable for use in patients.
Randomisation is the only commonly accepted method of ensuring an unbiased estimate of the treatment effect.
The Conversation/Wes Mountain
A randomised controlled trial is the best way to compare a new treatment with the standard treatment. And randomising trial participants is a core feature of the experiment.
3D bioprinted channel, representing a blood vessel within a hydrogel that mimics human tissue.
Forget, Heiny, Derme, Mitterberger, Shastri
3D bioprinting of living cells and materials may contribute to faster and cheaper ways to create effective new drugs - and even reduce animal testing.
MDMA is being trialled as a treatment for PSTD.
Woman image via www.shutterstock.com.
Researchers are finding medical uses for some molecules in certain street drugs, but it's important to call the drugs by their real names. Here’s why that's important.
Finding the way from lab bench to patent office can be hard.
Australia has never been short of inventors, scientists aren't always at home in the ruthless world of commerce. But if they can be given a helping hand, it could help the entire economy.
Success in human drug development is painfully low.
News reports this week hailing a breakthrough in Alzheimer's research, saying a vaccine for the disease is a few years away, have raised hopes for many. But let's take a step back from the headlines.
Human guinea pigs? On the occasion of Rennes drama, an explanation of what the drug trials in France and how they are controlled.
Research into their molecular components shows venoms aren’t all bad.
Many venoms contain bioactive components that are so stable to the body's enzymes and selective of their biological target that they're increasingly being used as novel research tools.
Thalidomide was initially marketed for daytime use, first as a flu treatment, then as ain aid to reduce stress and anxiety.
Thalidomide was developed in an era of widespread enthusiasm – but little critical attention – for pharmaceutical therapies.
Thalidomide was marketed as a safe, sleep-inducing drug, but when taken during pregnancy it could cause severe birth defects.
Melbourne thalidomider Lyn Rowe (right) won her legal case for compensation in 2012, at age 50.
Supplied by the Rowe Family/AAP
Thalidomide caused thousands of spontaneous abortions and left more than 10,000 children severely disabled. What guarantee is there that the same thing can’t occur again today?
The goal is to grow and activate drugs by a process as simple as making tea.
This project offers the tantalising possibility that plants containing drugs, such as agents to treat HIV, could be farmed on a small scale at low cost by communities that need them most.
A deadly meeting? The potentially lethal viper, Echis carinatus.
News that a leading manufacturer will cease making a well-known antivenom is not actually new.
Wyss Institute at Harvard University
A so-called "organ-on-chip" device could speed up the way drugs are developed. And it's just been named the London Design Museum's design of the year.
We wouldn’t get very far without lubricin keeping our joints moving.
You may not have heard of the protein lubricin, but it's what keeps your body moving. And now it's being used to treat disease and produce new therapeutics.
We’re in a protracted war against superbugs because we’ve overused existing antibiotics: a key weapon against disease.
We’ve heard a lot lately about superbugs – bacteria that are resistant to current antibiotics. But as the threat of superbugs continues to rise, the number of new treatments available has flatlined. This…
One genome at a time.
An ambitious project has been launched that will involve sequencing genomes of 100,000 individuals to improve our understanding of a range of diseases and – hopefully – eventually find new treatments for…
Food for drug-resistant bacteria.
The rise of bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics is a growing worry and threatens to put healthcare back to the early 20th century. Such resistance to drugs was inevitable, because bacteria evolve…
Overcoming gaps in medical funding.
Disease can affect any person, rich or poor. While your bank balance can’t really protect you from getting sick, it could potentially buy you – and many other patients – access to a better treatment for…
The last resort.
Development of new drugs for treatment of disease is an expensive, time-consuming and labour-intensive effort for both pharmaceutical companies and academics. For the past 15 years, “cost per approval…