Tag Archives: research

Why research integrity matters

A new paper by Lex Bouter clearly shows

Scholars need to be able to trust each other, because otherwise they cannot collaborate and use each other’s findings. Similarly trust is essential for research to be applied for individuals, society or the natural environment. The trustworthiness is threatened when researchers engage in questionable research practices or worse.

Pharma (and often also academic) research doesn’t match public health needs


There is also a review in the BMJ “Can medical product development be better aligned with global needs?

Typically, market analyses are performed by pharmaceutical companies. These analyses lead to value propositions and business cases for developing new products based on technologies those companies have either developed, or for which they have licensed intellectual property. These analyses—together with assessments of “end-user” (patient) preferences, and assessments of regulatory pathways—drive research and development (R&D) investments. In traditional for-profit product R&D, the unmet medical need is factored in only partially, including through the end-user preferences and the company’s assessment of likely regulatory authority perspectives. In some cases, governments or multilateral agencies can be large scale procurers (i.e., they will purchase the product), and in this situation their preferences may be given more weight.
However, at present, only a small proportion of global health R&D spending (around 2%) is on the compelling medical problems faced by LMICs.

Bullet points for future allergy research

Maybe this is a difficult task – defining an agenda for future research. Here are some thoughts as we don’t know the reasons for the allergy epidemic even after 100 years of research. And we don’t have any cure yet, there is some relief of symptoms and there are some limited curative efforts but we don’t have any real understanding of what is going on. The following research areas may therefore be identified in NON-therapeutic research: Continue reading Bullet points for future allergy research

When is the critical rate of discoveries that warrants any further experiment?

We were recently dicussing that problem too what Nature writes about the Encode project:

The question is, where to stop? Kellis says that some experimental approaches could hit saturation points: if the rate of discoveries falls below a certain threshold, the return on each experiment could become too low to pursue

As always – the scientific method once invoked – creates beautiful results but when it comes to justification of programs or methods it’s all about personal preferences, irrational beliefs, common misunderstandings, conformance to general trends, and whatsoever non-scientific influences.

Too much to read too little time

I didn’t find so much time to update the blog during the past few months – there are too many attractions out there, and so many interesting things to do. The never ending problem is that there is too much to read and too little time. This is, however, what also other people find, for example genomeweb.com

Pedro Beltrao at the Public Rambling blog says there never seems to be enough time to keep up with all the literature researchers keep churning out. In 2009, 848,865 papers were added to PubMed, he says — that’s something like 1.6 papers per minute. While there’s definitely no scarcity of outlets to publish, is anyone even paying attention?

Or the Latest Everything blog

From a half-forgotten Einstein quote to the complete works of J. S. Bach, everything is instantly available. But what can we really do with it all? A HALF-CENTURY ago Marshall McLuhan wrote: “We are today as far into the electric age as the Elizabethans had advanced into the typographical and mechanical age. And we are experiencing the same confusions and indecisions which they had felt when living simultaneously in two contrasted forms of society and experience.”

who republishes theNew Scientist article (04 April 2011) pp. 1-3 in Surfing the data flood: Continue reading Too much to read too little time