Therametrics (http://Therametrics.com) has a novel approach to therapeutic drug discovery which may fit well with efforts to find a cure for Dupuytren disease. Studying Dupuytren disease is difficult because the biology is amazingly complicated. Many different types of drugs might be helpful – too many for any one person to sort through. It’s also difficult because it progresses slowly and unpredictably – not good for testing by trial and error. This is a perfect problem for computer analysis – to sort through millions of scientific publications across many different fields of biology, and find hidden clues to what might work. This is what Therametrics software does – sifts through the internet, cross referencing drugs and biology: http://www.therametrics.com/pages-40-drr.html.
Therametrics has been kind enough to demonstrate some of the power of their tools for the Dupuytren Foundation by running an analysis on possible drugs to treat Dupuytren disease. The goal is to identify existing drugs whose effects overlap those of Dupuytren biology. For example, some drug already available for high blood pressure, baldness, or other conditions might also hold the key to help Dupuytren biology. Rather than reinventing the wheel, this approach finds a whole range of existing wheels. A summary of what they found is available at http://Dupuytrens.org/DupPDFs/TherametricsDupuytren.pdf. Pretty complicated, but very exciting. This is the tipping point between “I wonder if this will do anything?” to “Here’s why this should work.”. This is a giant leap forward, not just for Dupuytren disease research, but for any condition in need of a better medical treatment.