Nature Outlook |
In the fiercely competitive world of drug discovery and development, secrecy is no longer as important as it once was. As it has become more difficult and costly to produce therapies, competitors have begun to view greater collaboration and openness as a way to accelerate and improve the efficiency of research.
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A growing appreciation that cooperation and competition can coexist is transforming the life-sciences innovation landscape. Development was once shrouded in secrecy, but now organizations are coming together.
Drug discovery is time-consuming and full of blind alleys. Pharmaceutical rivals are cooperating in the early stages to accelerate and improve the efficiency of the process.
In 2006, pharmaceutical innovation consultant Bernard Munos helped to launch a lively public discussion about how open innovation can bring novel drugs to market with his paper 'Can opensource R&D reinvigorate drug research? He tells Nature how things have changed since then.
In a pioneering move, the compound JQ1 was released to the community for free. The impact that this has had on research and development is slowly coming into focus.
Open competitions bring new minds, skills and collaborations to problems in biomedical research.
In the search for novel therapies, drug developers have begun crowdsourcing molecules.
A more open approach to combating tropical diseases may help to overcome a pharmaceutical market failure.
Open initiatives are promising, but we have much further to go if research data are to be as publicly accessible as they should be, says Aled Edwards.
Advocates say that open science will be good for innovation. One neuroscience institute plans to put that to the test.
Several types of collaboration are being pursued to identify, validate and apply new biomarkers. Here, we highlight examples of such initiatives and discuss the challenges, approaches to address these challenges and key factors for success.
The quality of the chemical starting points for small-molecule drug discovery is a key factor in improving the likelihood of clinical success. In this article, experts from several organizations involved in drug discovery for malaria, tuberculosis and neglected tropical diseases present disease-specific criteria for hits and leads, and discuss the underlying rationale.
The Community for Open Antimicrobial Drug Discovery aims to tap into the potential of the millions of compounds distributed around laboratories globally to be a source of new antibiotic leads by offering free screening for antimicrobial properties, with no strings attached.
A new model for translational research and drug repositioning has recently been established based on three-way partnerships between public funders, the pharmaceutical industry and academic investigators. This article discusses the progress with two pioneering initiatives — one involving the UK Medical Research Council and one involving the US National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences — and the unique requirements and challenges for this model.
Technological advances coupled with novel collaborative strategies for compound sourcing and management are poised to transform the utility of high-throughput screening.
Will freedom to research and innovate be restricted as the induced pluripotent stem cell field advances toward the clinic, or are concerns premature within a rapidly changing ecosystem?
The open-source software movement has successfully pioneered several strategies that might also be applicable in drug discovery and development. Munos considers the challenges involved, and proposes a model to harness the potential of open-source drug R&D.
Despite recent progress, only a fraction of the drug industry's shelved compounds are shared with the research community. Could online collaborative research offer a solution?
Too few precompetitive consortia are being formed to mitigate lost opportunities and deliver on other potential mutual gains for public and private stakeholders in drug development.