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Dec 30, 2011

Readers Divided on Potential Success of Barack Obama’s Bioeconomy Blueprint

  • President Barack Obama’s initiative to develop an applied life sciences strategic plan, or National Bioeconomy Blueprint, seems to have failed to spark as much hope as the administration might want. Exactly half (50.0%) of respondents to a recent GEN poll answered “not much” when asked how effective the suggestions made for the Bioeconomy Blueprint will be in boosting the U.S. life science sector. However, another one-third (33.3%) said the plan’s recommendations will be “a great deal” effective, and 16.7%, “somewhat” effective."

    Obama’s administration says it intends to apply biological research innovations toward national challenges that include health, food, energy, and the environment. The administration’s Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) posted on its website that it received 134 submissions to a formal Request for Information (RFI) between October 7 and the December 6 deadline. Responses came from a cross-section of industry and professional groups focused on the life sciences as well as biotech and pharma companies, research institutions, universities, and individuals.

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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

Do you agree that ecstasy should be studied for its potential therapeutic benefits?

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