What comes to mind when you think of the word “biohacking?” Probably someone trying to crack your bio code without your knowledge or permission, or a bunch of chemists sitting around in their garages cooking up some un-regulated drug cocktail. But in my experience, that’s the furthest thing from the truth.
There is a new revolution afoot where citizen scientists outside of traditional academic, commercial, and government industries are working to flip the health care and biotech industry upside down.
The idea is, Big Pharma shouldn’t be the only one who has access to the findings, methods, and procedures in these fields. They should be open-sourced so anyone with the means to do so can replicate them. And as this movement gets off the ground, they’ll be able to, with step-by-step instructions – royalty free!
Behind this movement is entrepreneur Ryan Bethencourt and his partner Anthony Di Franco – a type 1 diabetic tired of the high insurance costs it takes to get his insulin.
They’re on a mission to create an alternative to the outrageously high costs – brewing insulin at home! Along with Counter Culture Labs, their goal is to provide free access to insulin worldwide.
What’s truly remarkable is how affordable this all is. At just $80 a gene, they can program the DNA sequence for insulin. 10 years ago, this would’ve cost millions of dollars. Now, it’s less than one one-thousandth of the cost.
But aside from open-sourcing these findings for more affordable care, one team member added: “We’re not just making open source Insulin, we’re improving on what Genentech [the big pharma company] did and are learning from their mistakes.”
Thanks to the collision of large IT infrastructures and breakthroughs in DNA development technology, the economies of scale for developing medicine have been lowered yet again.
This is bound to hurt some big industry players, but benefit us all.
Editor, BioTech Intel Trader
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