Bio-IT World: Curing Cancer By Throwing Spaghetti At The Wall

30 Nov


November 2012, The Skeptical Outsider

Curing Cancer By Throwing Spaghetti At The Wall

You know scientists are getting desperate when National Cancer Institute (NCI) researchers publicly boast that their approach is not limited to the realm of rational behavior. Heck, as long as funding is infinite, why not keep going back to re-drill the same dry holes hoping dumb luck will produce a gusher?

I did a double-take when I read a series of news articles describing an ongoing study in which 100 existing cancer drugs were tested in pairs to see if their abysmal effectiveness could be improved via combination therapy. Experimenters at NCI’s Division of Cancer Treatment and Diagnosis ran 300,000 experiments to test 5,000 possible drug combinations against a panel of 60 cancer cell lines looking for an improvement in kill rates. The idea is to identify a few combinations that might be worthy of progressing into clinical trials.

If this isn’t a sign of intellectual exhaustion, I don’t know what is.

You can read the rest of the column here.



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