Barbarians at the gate
The medical mainstream is stumped.
That's why some big brains at the London School of Economics (LSE) put on their thinking caps and sat down to think really hard on how to solve what they call a "dreadful" problem...
And it really is dreadful. Partly because the medical world is panicked about the rise of superbugs like MRSA, and partly because, as one LSE researcher puts it, there are only a handful of new antibiotics in the drug development pipeline.
So you've got a horde of barbarians at the gate, and you're low on ammunition. What do you do?
LSE has a plan.
And it's the stupidest thing you've ever heard, mostly because the LSE researchers are so robotically devoted to the drug industry that they can't see the non-drug solution right under their noses.
Here's the LSE Big Idea: Incentivize drug companies.
The drug industry has three "incentive" problems with antibiotics: 1) The drugs are only given for a short period. You can't make billions off a three-week treatment! 2) Eventually, every antibiotic becomes obsolete as bacteria develop resistance. And 3) Patents run out too soon for drug giants to make the multi-billion dollar profits they demand.
It's a lose-lose-lose for drug companies.
So LSE has dreamed up two seductive schemes to lure in the drug giants.
Scheme One: Extend patents. Longer patents equals more peak profit years. But wait...that's not all. This scheme would also allow drug companies to transfer the patent extension to other types of drugs--such as a blockbuster drug nearing the end of its patent period.
So if Pfizer brought a new antibiotic to market under this plan, it could protect Lipitor's patent even longer.
Scheme Two: Government rewards. These rewards would be in the form of vouchers that could be traded for accelerated regulatory approval. Great idea. Don't test...just bring to market faster because you have a coupon.
But wait...that's not even the worst part. Once a company has committed to developing an antibiotic, the vouchers don't have to be used for the antibiotic, they could be used to accelerate approval of ANY type of drug. Imagine how many useless, ineffective, dangerous drugs could be brought to market right away with this system!
Turn patients into guinea pigs to save other patients' lives? Please! It's hog wild! It makes no sense.
Here's what does make sense: OPEN YOUR EYES, LSE!
Long before pharmaceutical antibiotics first appeared in the 1940's, colloidal silver was a commonly used antibacterial agent. Colloidal silver disrupts enzymes that bacteria require for oxygen metabolism. Bacteria can't replicate without those enzymes.
But once antibiotic drugs were on the scene, colloidal silver took a back seat. Eventually it was rebranded by the medical mainstream as a bizarre quack treatment, even though it's nothing more than submicroscopic silver particles finely dispersed in water.
Colloidal silver has one enormous advantage over synthetic antibiotic drugs: Bacteria never develop resistance--not even the dreaded MRSA.
So here's a REAL challenge for LSE researchers: Come up with a scheme that will incentivize the medical establishment to accept colloidal silver as a solution to the antibiotic resistance crisis.
Maybe it would work if they include a "get out of jail free" card...
About the author
Jenny Thompson is the Director of the Health Sciences Institute and editor of the HSI e-Alert. Through HSI, she and her team uncover important health information and expose ridiculous health misinformation, most notably through the HSI e-Alert.
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