Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Is there a Future for Organic Chemists in the Pharmaceutical Industry outside China and India?

I have copy/pasted the headline for this post from the editorial in the most recent issue of Organic Process Research and Development. It's a good question that is being asked and I believe that the answer is YES. However, we really need to come up with something new to justify our existence. The Chinese and others are just as good as us at doing Med Chem SAR working their way through methyl, ethyl, propyl, futile...but they can do the work at a much lower cost. The same thing that happened to the textile industry sometime last century is happening to the pharmaceutical industry. The design is made in the western world but the actual product is manufactured at some cheap site in Asia. The way forward is to invent new ingenious stuff. Start biotech companies with crazy, innovative new technologies, start working at the biology/chemistry interface modifying proteins; oligonucleosides etc. in predictable ways for use a medicinal agents and so on. Ultimately this development is a good thing. It is forcing us to think and evolve. In the end humanity will benefit from some great new discoveries and technologies that will spring from the effort we put into this. So get up and go invent something brilliant that will make the world a better place. D!

8 comments:

Daniel Sejer said...

That is actually from the previous issue of the journal. Sorry about the mix. up. D!

Anonymous said...

I wonder about this every so often...sigh! Not sure being original is going to take us anywhere: people are already working hard and outsorcing seems to rule the business. Maybe it's time to jump boat... :(

Anyways, enough with the moaning, I want to see more on funky lab techniques and wacky experiments on this blog!! Get your s*** together man, we're impatient to read all about it :D

Here's some useful info on drying your solvents I recently read:

Drying of Organic Solvents: Quantitative Evaluation of the Efficiency of Several Desiccants

http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/jo101589h

Cheers!

S

Carey B said...

It will not matter about the level of innovations in the here and now, per se. The truth is that inventions are already owned by the Corps that fund the research and this creates a drain on the level of innovation, thanks to our district courts. How long it will take this “drain” to effectively eliminate ALL innovation remains to be seen, but it will happen. The fact that U.S scientist are all bound by these damned pre-invention assignments embedded in employment agreements is a travesty.
The United States Constitution (U.S. Const. at. I, § 8, cl. 8) has endowed inventors with the right to their inventions:
“To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.”
Sadly enough, the USPTO has interpreted inventor to mean "corporation". Seriously, check out the patent office's "inventors' assistance" website, it is a joke.
It seems simple enough to me, give a chunk of money back to the people who created the billion $ drug (or whatever) so they can invent even more. Otherwise, not so much...

Daniel Sejer said...

@anonymous: quote "...I want to see more on funky lab techniques and wacky experiments on this blog!! Get your s*** together man..."
The ides for the posts you guys want come when I'm actually doing lab work myself. However, the lab is avoidig me! I haven't done an experment in 3+ months. I hope it is about to change and that I can share some more goodies with the Curly Arrow followers. Fingers crossed. D!

ckellz said...

This is something that keeps me up at night too. Every 3rd paper in the ACS journal comes from china and its bothersome because it puts doubt in my mind that we can really compete with their shear manpower. I mean granted we are still quite far ahead but the asian countries are picking up. Whats happening to pharm is terrible but we have no one to blame but ourselves. I really think we need to kick into overdrive and take back whats ours. /endrant :P

Anonymous said...

EMD is discontinuing product 15111, Silica Gel 60 15-40µm. Does anyone have an alternate supplier for this DCVC stationary phase?

I am testing Sortech's 52200-1 (Silica Gel P - Prep TLC, Premium Rf, 60A, 15-40um, 1kg $ 105.00) to see if it will replace the EMD silica.

Anonymous said...

How did the test on the silica gel go? or
Did anyone find a substitute for Merck 15111?

Anonymous said...

"So get up and go invent something brilliant that will make the world a better place. D!"

Ok. I did (PSI 6130 and PSI 6206 etc)! Now what?
I received nothing for my work (the company and its founder, Raymond Schinazi, who by the way is a salaried U.S. Government research) have received $billions.
I'm unemployed and looking for work.