The best years for bioinformatics are yet to come, according to a recent survey conducted by the Windber Research Institute.
In August, WRI posed a set of 17 questions to 240 members of the biomedical research community regarding the future of bioinformatics in drug discovery and development. In stark contrast to the reigning pessimism of the investment community in recent years, it appears that the research sector is much more optimistic about bioinformatics’ ability to impact medicine: When asked, “Do you think that bioinformatics has a role to play in the search for new ‘smart’ drugs?” 100 percent of respondents answered “yes,” while a strong majority — 60 percent — felt that bioinformatics would help reduce the cost of drug development.
The bullish outlook wasn’t surprising to Richard Somiari, COO and CSO of WRI, who conducted the survey in order “to establish what the current perception was of biomedical informatics.” Although bioinformatics has seen its share of naysayers who have recently claimed that the technology promises more than it can deliver, Somiari said that this backlash was an inevitable response to the preceding period of hype and “pressure from investors and the media that made people expect too much from bioinformatics.”
The consensus among the respondents to the WRI survey was that “bioinformatics is going to deliver, but it’s not ready to deliver yet,” Somiari said.
Do you think that there are enough bioinformatics solutions?
Do you feel that computers will make it possible to model disease processes in humans?
When do you think drugs attributable to bioinformatics will become easily available?
Given that current methods of drug development cost billions of dollars, do you think that bioinformatics will reduce this cost?
Source: Windber Research Institute