Precision Medicine will need to get out of the pharma silo that is based on symptoms

Welcome to the digital era of biology (and to this modest blog I started in early 2005).

To cure many diseases, like cancer or cystic fibrosis, we will need to target genes (mutations, for ex.), not organs! I am convinced that the future of replacement medicine (organ transplant) is genomics (the science of the human genome). In 10 years we will be replacing (modifying) genes; not organs!

Anticipating the $100 genome era and the P4™ medicine revolution. P4 Medicine (Predictive, Personalized, Preventive, & Participatory): Catalyzing a Revolution from Reactive to Proactive Medicine.

After low-cost airlines (Ryanair, Easyjet ...) comes "low-cost" participatory medicine. Some of my readers have recently christened this long-lasting, clumsy attempt at e-writing of mine "THE LOW-COSTE INNOVATION BLOG". I am an
early adopter of scientific MOOCs. My name's Catherine Coste. I've earned myself four MIT digital diplomas: 7.00x, 7.28x1, 7.28.x2 and 7QBWx. Instructor of 7.00x: Eric Lander PhD.

Upcoming books: Airpocalypse, a medical thriller (action taking place in Beijing) 2017; Jesus CRISPR Superstar, a sci-fi -- French title: La Passion du CRISPR (2018).

I love Genomics. Would you rather donate your data, or... your vital organs?

Audio files on this blog are Windows files ; if you have a Mac, you might want to use VLC ( to read them.

Concernant les fichiers son ou audio (audio files) sur ce blog : ce sont des fichiers Windows ; pour les lire sur Mac, il faut les ouvrir avec VLC (

Un traitement pour le traumatisme de la moelle épinière

Traumatisme de la moelle épinière, paralysie (tétra- ou paraplégie), voire "mort encéphalique", avec un "don d'organes" à la clé : cet engrenage pas si fréquent mais qui arrive tout de même risque d'appartenir au passé sous peu ... On va assister à la mort de la "mort encéphalique" n'étant rien d'autre qu'une incompétence du cerveau ... et non la mort tout court ... "Mort encéphalique" et traumatisme de la moelle épinière ne font d'ailleurs pas toujours bon ménage, car le second complique le diagnostic de la première :

"In the UK, when the standard brain death criteria are met, further investigations are not necessary. Confirmatory tests can be useful, however, when it is not possible to carry out all of the brainstem tests. We report the case of a patient with multiple trauma and a high spinal cord injury who was apnoeic. Confirmatory tests (EEG, brainstem, auditory evoked potential) were essential in supporting the diagnosis of brainstem death to allow withdrawal of artificial ventilation, as organ donation was being considered." (source).

Ce qui suit va intéresser bien des familles ayant un proche dans un fauteuil roulant, tétraplégique ou paraplégique ... ils sont nombreux aux USA (voir ici pour les statistiques) ...

J'ai bien l'honneur de vous présenter une biotech américaine basée près de Boston, Massachusetts, USA, dont l'activité est de réparer les traumatismes de la moelle épinière ... y compris ceux qui impactent la rétine ...  InVivo Therapeutics ... Lire ici les détails en anglais ... Les biomatériels transplantables font ainsi leur apparition ... Ne pas confondre ces biomatériels avec la régénération du cerveau à l'aide de cellules souches : dans ce dernier cas, on utilise des cellules souches adultes pluripotentes afin, par exemple, d'enrayer les effets de l'accident vasculaire cérébral (AVC) ou encore les "progrès" de la maladie de Parkinson ... "La maladie de Parkinson est une maladie neurodégénérative caractérisée par la perte progressive d’un seul type cellulaire du cerveau. La greffe de cellules saines issues de cellules souches pluripotentes induites est-elle la solution ?" (voir ici). Pour rappel, les gens victimes d'un AVC constituaient jusqu'à présent le gros des troupes des "donneurs d'organes" dits "post-mortem" ... or cela va changer puisqu'on va utiliser des cellules souches pour traiter avec succès les AVC ischémiques (lire ici) ... Et côté investisseurs, chez InVivo Therapeutics, comment cela se passe-t-il ? Le PDG de InVivo, Frank Reynolds, nous explique la chose ...

"InVivo Therapeutics Corporation is a Cambridge, MA based medical device company founded to develop and commercialize groundbreaking technologies for the treatment of spinal cord injuries (SCI).

Currently, there are no treatment options for SCI patients to successfully restore function following a spinal cord injury. Existing treatments consist of a collection of approaches that only focus on symptoms of SCI, such as decompression and mechanical stabilization of the spinal cord, rather than on the underlying pathology.

CEO Frank Reynolds discusses InVivo Therapeutics’ research and product portfolio.

InVivo intends to create a new paradigm of care by taking a novel approach to SCI. Instead of focusing exclusively on regeneration, InVivo concentrates on neuroprotection. Our products are intended to protect the spinal cord after primary injury by mitigating the bleeding, inflammation, and further cell death that result from the body’s immune response to SCI. By minimizing these secondary injury processes, and by supporting subsequent repair and recovery, the body can locally reorganize toward functional recovery through the spared healthy tissue. This process, known as neuroplasticity, may result in partial functional recovery.

InVivo has an unmatched development portfolio composed of platform technologies for the treatment of both spinal cord injury and other application. These technologies encompass multiple strategies involving biomaterials, U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) approved drugs, growth factors, and human neural stem cells (hNSCs)."

"The use of biomaterials for transplantation and directed differentiation of nerve progenitor cells for central nervous system repair. Dowload PDF.

InVivo scientists engineer a drug delivery and tissue engineering method to increase survival of neural stem cells after transplantation into the injured spinal cord. Dowload PDF.

Design and Fabrication of biocompatible polymer implants suitable for neural tissue engineering, drug delivery and prosthetics. Dowload PDF.

Functional recovery following spinal cord injury mediated by novel polymer scaffolds that can be used alone and/or as carriers to administer human neural stem cells". Dowload PDF.

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