Open Cures – Biotechnology Bypassing the FDA

From the Open Cures website, here is their mission statement:
Open Cures is a volunteer initiative, open to everyone willing to help, that aims to speed the advent of biotechnologies that can slow down or repair aspects of the biological damage of aging and thus extend healthy human life. Our primary long-term goal is to bring together (a) promising but undeveloped biotechnologies of longevity and (b) the developers who can bring them to the clinic. Open Cures volunteers contribute to achieving this end in the following ways:

Publishing, explaining, and publicizing demonstrated longevity biotechnologies. Building relationships with the open biotech, medical tourism, and overseas development communities. Spurring the clinical development of longevity medicine where no such development would otherwise have occurred.

But why are these efforts necessary? The laboratories of the world are crowded with examples of worms, flies, and mice that live significantly longer, healthier lives through the application of modern biotechnology. Aging has been slowed, and some narrow, specific biological aspects of aging even reversed. Yet it is illegal in the United States for anyone to try to develop these technologies into therapies to slow or reverse aging in humans. Read on to find out more about this shameful state of affairs.

They are making the important point that the out of control regulatory state that characterizes modern America is strangling medical innovations in the cradle. What is striking about this organization is that they realize political means, lobbying or rallying support among voters, is futile. They note:
Political lobbying, while being the first reaction for many people, is not the answer. The FDA is a fundamentally broken organization, whose employees and appointees are incentivized to minimize the production of new therapies. They suffer no meaningful penalty from suppressing new discoveries, but are censured and castigated when any medicine is shown to be less than 100% safe-and of course no therapy, technology, or human endeavor is 100% safe. So their safe, job-guarding posture is to slow down the introduction of new technology as much as possible, and this is exactly what has happened over the past few decades. Each year the costs imposed on development by the FDA increase, and the number of newly approved therapies decreases.

There are any number of well-supported organizations, research associations, and wealthy interest groups whose members are presently engaged in trying to make the FDA process faster and better: they are all failing, and have been failing for years. Lobbying a broken system is not the answer, as it only legitimizes it – rather we must work around that system entirely, and thereby make it irrelevant.

How refreshing to see an organization that “gets it”. They clearly understand the character of the modern regulatory state. However, instead of giving up hope, they realize that the world is a big place and not all nations are as adverse to risk as the US.

Such thinking is along the same lines as my medship idea that I outlined in a few posts: Business Idea: Medship = Medical Tourism + Blueseed, Business Idea: Medship = Medical Tourism + Blueseed – An Additional Note, and Why We Need Medships.

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