About this Author
DBL%20Hendrix%20small.png College chemistry, 1983

Derek Lowe The 2002 Model

Dbl%20new%20portrait%20B%26W.png After 10 years of blogging. . .

Derek Lowe, an Arkansan by birth, got his BA from Hendrix College and his PhD in organic chemistry from Duke before spending time in Germany on a Humboldt Fellowship on his post-doc. He's worked for several major pharmaceutical companies since 1989 on drug discovery projects against schizophrenia, Alzheimer's, diabetes, osteoporosis and other diseases. To contact Derek email him directly: Twitter: Dereklowe

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« Out the Door and Over the Edge | Main | For Further Enlightenment »

August 16, 2005

Experimental News

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Posted by Derek

I set up another run of experiments in my long-running series today. I'm repeating the best results from last time (the previous post in this category), with fresh samples of everything (just to be sure that there wasn't something odd about the last batch, which seemed to work so well.) There's a new type of control in there, too, off in another direction from the ones I've run before. And I've made several new compounds to test, all closely related to the things that seem to have worked.

That's been a big part of the delay. I've exhausted most of the commercially available starting materials by now - as I narrow down to the most promising structures, I find that I have to make a lot of my starting materials myself. Some of them are easy to whip out, but I still have to purify them, and all these things take time. And, of course, none of this is officially what I'm supposed to be doing, so I have to work these things in as I can.

I've also accepted an offer to present the whole idea in a public forum for the first time. Well, an inside-the-company public forum, that is. I've grabbed folks by their shirt collars and scribbled all over their office whiteboards during the last couple of years, but this will be the first time I've put everything together into a real presentation. My submarine project is beginning to surface.

Comments (5) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: Birth of an Idea


1. pz on August 17, 2005 12:59 AM writes...

Maybe outsourcing the work for the raw material would free up much of the time for the really critical things ...

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2. Derek Lowe on August 17, 2005 7:49 AM writes...

Wish I could! I really can't ask my lab associates to do it for me, though, because they're expected to be contributing full-time to our assigned drug-discovery projects. I'm the only person in the lab who can get away with doing weird stuff like this. . .

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3. SP on August 17, 2005 10:42 AM writes...

Come on, throw around some of that big-pharma cash and get your substrates custom-synthesiszed.

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4. Erich Schwarz on August 17, 2005 5:05 PM writes...

Good luck! It's heartening to see that one can be past grad school and postdoc and still be doing original stuff.

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5. steve on August 19, 2005 9:56 PM writes...

Blow all ballast! The submarine is surfacing. Will you follow the WWII convention and name it after a fish? I like the idea of reading about Project Swordfish or Project Barracuda. It would be less awkward than "my experimental project" too.

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