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Are We Driving Innovation without the Quality? Pete Kissinger, Purdue

Guest:

Pete Kissinger, Chemist, Purdue University
Bio and Contact Info

Listen (4:43) Many problems in life science traced back to poor measurements

Listen (2:50) Innovation without quality

Listen (4:37) Metabolome closer to reality than genome

Listen (7:46) Too focused on questions of reimbursement and regulation

Listen (3:34) Smartphone bio sample collection not there yet

Listen (10:35) Does the new Emerald Cloud Lab have a future?

Pete Kissinger is one of those who can discuss just about any area in the life sciences, often with humor. Pete's a professor of analytical chemistry at Purdue and founder of a drug development company, Bioanalytical Systems.

When I first chatted with Pete, our discussion went to every corner of the industry and back again. If Pete were a football player, he'd be comfortable in any position from quarterback to front linesman to safety.
For today's show, Pete and I tried to stick to a common theme--the importance of quality measurements.

Pete ties many of the problems we have in the life sciences--issues of reproducibility, failed clinical trials, an over emphasis on genomics--to low quality measurements. When asked why that is, Pete turns to funding, arguing that we are prioritizing the new over the reproducible.

"Often there isn't the funding to validate sufficient numbers of samples . . . We fund innovative academic science. We don't fund the routine blocking and tackling required to get quality data from a sufficient number of subjects," he says in today's interview.

At the end, I ask Pete what he thinks about the new Emerald Cloud Lab, a remote lab offering basic biology experiments accessible to anyone through the cloud. Will this impact the integrity of the scientific method?

But often we get off track. Pete is too fun a guest not to loosen the reins a bit.

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