The Broad Institute will be searching through Roche's catalog of more than 300 failed compounds to find new possible uses for those drugs, Fierce Biotech reports. "Presumably, those compounds passed initial safety tests, meaning that renewed development for a new use might not require as much lengthy (and expensive) study as a never-before-trialed drug," Fierce Biotech writes. Similar drug repurposing efforts are underway at the US National Institutes of Health's National Center for Translational Science and at the UK's Medical Research Council.
At In the Pipeline, Derek Lowe writes that he hopes something comes out of this new initiative, but he adds that it'll be a tricky challenge. "The best case for any repurposed compound is for its original target to be good for something unanticipated," he says, later adding that "it's not that I think these shouldn't be tried — why not, as long as it doesn't cost too much — but things could quickly get more complicated than they might have seemed."