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A Life Cycle All Its Own

Just how long does it take for translational research to bear fruit in the form of an effective therapeutic? Orac cites research by John Ioannidis published recently in Science that found that the "translation lag" is about 25 years between the first description and earliest highly cited article. "What Dr. Ioannidis shows is that, in essence, a lot of 'translational' research takes close to two decades to bear fruit, and it's fairly uncommon for it to take less than a decade," he says at Respectful Insolence.

Some remedies to cut the lag time include, most importantly, finding off-label uses for existing drugs, as well as multidisciplinary collaborations with focused targets, incentives for testing claims, and requiring large, reproducible clinical trials.

 

The Scan

Missed Early Cases

A retrospective analysis of blood samples suggests early SARS-CoV-2 infections may have been missed in the US, the New York Times reports.

Limited Journal Editor Diversity

A survey finds low diversity among scientific and medical journal editors, according to The Scientist.

How Much of a Threat?

Science writes that need for a provision aimed at shoring up genomic data security within a new US bill is being questioned.

PNAS Papers on Historic Helicobacter Spread, Brain Development, C. difficile RNAs

In PNAS this week: Helicobacter genetic diversity gives insight into human migrations, gene expression patterns of brain development, and more.