Beginner's Mind

#107: Jack Scannell - Uncovering Drug Development Efficiency Secrets: The Science Behind Pharmaceutical Research

February 19, 2023 Christian Soschner Season 4 Episode 12
Beginner's Mind
#107: Jack Scannell - Uncovering Drug Development Efficiency Secrets: The Science Behind Pharmaceutical Research
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Show Notes

Do you ever wonder why it takes so long for new drugs to hit the market? Have you ever questioned the efficiency of the pharmaceutical industry?

Join me in this episode as we talk to Jack Scannell, a pharmaceutical industry expert, and discover the hidden efficiency secrets of drug development. In this episode, we delve into the critical factors that have shaped drug development over the last 60 years and analyze the industry's current state.

Throughout the podcast, Jack draws on his extensive industry knowledge and provides insights on the importance of decision quality, the role of AI in drug discovery, and the economics of the research model.

If you're looking to gain a better understanding of the pharmaceutical industry and its inner workings, join us in uncovering the efficiency secrets of drug development. Tune in to this episode.

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Jack Scannell
Christian Soschner

📖 Memorable quotes:

(11:41) “Between 1950 and 2010, Drug Development saw a halving time: Every nine years, the number of drugs developed per billion dollars spent halved.”
(24:58) “4 Reasons for the Decline of Drug Development Productivity: Better Than the Beatles Problem, Higher Regulatory Hurdles, Throw Money at it Problem, Misindustrialisation of Science
(26:30) “Metformin is the Pharmaceutical Equivalent to the Beatles”
(45:15) “In early drug discovery, predictive validity, the degree to which your model output correlates with human clinical utility is critically important”
(01:19:31) “If the only tool you have to measure the height of the fruit is the rate at which you are picking fruit, and you notice that the rate of picking fruit is declining, you will always blame the low hanging fruit problem.”
(01:34:15) “When capital is freely available, the average quality is going down”

⏰  Timestamps:

(00:00) Introduction: Uncovering Drug Development Efficiency Secrets
(06:30) Background Jack Scannell: Pharma Journey
(09:15) Finding erooM’s Law: Playful Experiment Leads to Discovery
(12:00) Inversion of Output Efficiency: More Capital, Fewer Drugs
(13:15) Best Key Figure for R&D Productivity?
(20:24) Factors Behind R&D Productivity Decline - 1950 to 2010
(25:30) The Beatles Inform Drug Development
(28:34) The Regulatory Problem
(30:00) Throwing Money at the Problem & Misindustrialisation of Science
(31:00) Turnaround in Drug Development Efficiency from 2010
(38:30) Speeding Up Early-Stage R&D
(45:45) Technical & Managerial Components to Improve Speed
(47:10) Improving Predictive Quality of Models - Alzheimer's Case Study
(57:00) Interplay of Different Forces in Complex Problem Solving
(01:02:30) Model Quality Matters the Most for High R&D Quality
(01:12:45) Making Pharma Value Chain More Effective
(01:18:00) Appropriate Success Measure for Drug R&D?
(01:21:05) Role of AI in Drug Discovery Process
(01:29:32) Limiting Factor of AI in Biology?
(01:31:00) Availability of Capital a Limiting Factor in Drug Development?
(01:39:00) Economics of Research Model - Common Goods Problem
(01:47:00) Role of Public Funds to Validate R&D Model Quality
(01:52:00) Truth Seeking Over Progression Seeking Behaviour: Prioritizing Scientific Integrity in Drug Development.

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