By Wayne Koberstein, Executive Editor, Life Science Leader magazine
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Is it quantum effects, evolutionary quirks, or ordinary human imperfection that renders discovery and development of new drugs and the prediction of their effects so uncertain? Uncertainty is manifested in the infinitesimal success rate of new drug development in general. Most new drug entities in R&D either fail to achieve approval or deliver far less than perfect results — often perhaps because their targets and mechanisms are products of engineering based on inaccurate mathematical models. The practice has spawned a new field and probably cutting-edge discipline for biopharma developers: bioinformatics.