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    #91
    Perhaps the government will be helping with prize money also!

    Will NIH Embrace Biomedical Research Prizes?
    by Michael Price on 19 July 2011, 4:53 PM

    Centuries after the British government offered up to £20,000 for anyone who developed a precise method to determine a ship's longitude—a British cabinetmaker won with his invention of a highly accurate clock—prizes for scientific or technical accomplishments are sexy once again. The X-Prize Foundation is largely responsible for this renewed interest, thanks to its multimillion dollar prize incentives for radical breakthroughs in areas such as DNA sequencing and manned spaceflight. U.S. government agencies, however, are also getting in on the act. NASA and the Department of Defense, for example, have launched several prizes to stimulate research advances or accomplish technical goals. But what about America's premier funder of biomedical research, the National Institutes of Health (NIH)?
    NIH has so far sat on the sidelines of the prize game, but there are hints that may soon change. Yesterday, on NIH's Bethesda, Maryland, campus, several parts of the agency held a meeting, Crowdsourcing: The Art and Science of Open Innovation, in which various government and private organizations that offer research prizes described their successes, prompting speculation over whether NIH will follow suit. And James Anderson, NIH's director for the Division of Program Coordination, Planning, and Strategic Initiatives, said in his closing remarks to the audience that NIH Director Francis Collins would soon sign papers that would ensure NIH is compliant with the America COMPETES Act, which gives federal agencies the authority to offer cash incentives for researchers to tackle high-risk, high-reward research questions that have eluded more traditional funding platforms, such as grants and sponsored research. Yet Anderson declined to say how long it might be until NIH begins offering such prizes. "We're asking people to be a little bit patient," Anderson says. "But we're making progress."
    The America COMPETES Act was first passed in 2007 and was reauthorized in December. Under its authority, federal agencies outline a problem they'd like solved on Challenge.gov, then open the competition to individuals or teams, evaluate the results, and award a money prize to whoever turns in the best solution. Offering prizes has several advantages over granting or sponsoring research, said Dwayne Spradlin, president of InnoCentive, an online platform like Challenge.gov that hosts research competitions. Funders get many fresh looks at the problem for less money than it usually costs to provide a grant. "You're distributing the risk and accelerating research and development in the process," Spradlin says.
    Incentivized research was just one theme at the crowdsourcing conference, which also explored other ways scientists and science agencies could take advantage of the processing power of lots of willing brains. Media guru Tim O'Reilly of O'Reilly Media discussed how patient-centered Web sites such as PatientsLikeMe.com collect massive amounts of data on patients' symptoms, environments, lifestyles, and emotional states. Even though the data aren't collected in a standard scientific way, he said, scientists should still embrace such a massive amount of information and mine it for new ideas. "We are building a global brain out there on the Internet," he says.
    Adrien Treuille, a computer scientist at Carnegie Mellon University, added that this new global brain also likes to have a little fun while it does science. He and colleagues are the creators of two online video games, Foldit and EteRNA, that simulate protein folding and structural RNA mapping, respectively. These games have proven surprisingly popular among nonresearchers and players' solutions often surprise scientists because their creativity isn't constrained by what they think a correct answer should look like, Treuille says. And that's precisely the value of crowdsourcing, he notes. "It's not a linear thing to get the public involved in science," Teuille says. "It's incredibly nonlinear and all sorts of crazy things come out, some of it brilliant."



    http://news.sciencemag.org/sciencein...ch.html?ref=hp
    http://spinalcordresearchandadvocacy.wordpress.com/

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      #92
      Great post Grammy !!!

      Let's make online game to help SCI research!

      That would be incredible innovative thinking ....
      www.MiracleofWalk.com

      Miracles are not contrary to nature, but only contrary
      to what we know about nature
      Saint Augustine

      Comment


        #93
        I hope the NIH follows through and puts out prizes for multiple causes.
        T5/6, ASIA A, injured 30 Nov 08
        Future SCI Alumnus.
        I don't want to dance in the rain, I want to soar above the storm.

        Comment


          #94
          It's a great idea and I remember DA talking about such a prize many years ago ... but with America in a debt crisis, do you really think that's going to happen? Dr Young talks about how little NIH does for spinal cord injury already?
          Roses are red. Tacos are enjoyable. Don't blame immigrants, because you're unemployable.

          T-11 Flaccid Paraplegic due to TM July 1985 @ age 12

          Comment


            #95
            Originally posted by paolocipolla View Post
            It all depends on the rules you set up to win the prize in my opinion.

            I have been reading about many incentive prize and I have seen many interesting mecanisms to compromise collaboration with competition.

            I have been talking about the idea of the X-Pize with sevral researchers and most of them had a negative reaction. Unfortunatly none of them were interested in learning how an SCI X-Prize could work.

            Very disappointing.

            For sure to have a clinical trial network to test therapies in an efficent manner would help a lot.
            I agree. The X-prize has to be designed so that it can lead to a cure. I don't automatically dismiss a prize. If it is not properly set up, it could be a waste of money.

            Paolo, I am not sure that you have looked at the research funded by the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation sufficiently. Many of the studies funded by CRPF have led to the some promising therapies for regenerating the spinal cord. For example, the CRPF funded pivotal Cethrin, the Nogo antibody, and chondroitinase studies. I haven't been on the CRPF advisory board for over a decade but I did serve on the organization's advisory board for nearly 20 years, when it was Paralysis Cure Research, the American Paralysis Association, the Hank Stifel Foundation, and until 1999 after it become the Christopher Reeve Foundation. It was the major private funder of spinal cord injury research. They did receive a grant from the CDC to improve care and quality of life of people with spinal cord injury, telephone information services, etc.

            Wise.

            Comment


              #96
              Originally posted by Wise Young View Post
              I agree. The X-prize has to be designed so that it can lead to a cure. I don't automatically dismiss a prize. If it is not properly set up, it could be a waste of money.

              Paolo, I am not sure that you have looked at the research funded by the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation sufficiently. Many of the studies funded by CRPF have led to the some promising therapies for regenerating the spinal cord. For example, the CRPF funded pivotal Cethrin, the Nogo antibody, and chondroitinase studies. I haven't been on the CRPF advisory board for over a decade but I did serve on the organization's advisory board for nearly 20 years, when it was Paralysis Cure Research, the American Paralysis Association, the Hank Stifel Foundation, and until 1999 after it become the Christopher Reeve Foundation. It was the major private funder of spinal cord injury research. They did receive a grant from the CDC to improve care and quality of life of people with spinal cord injury, telephone information services, etc.

              Wise.
              Sure in the past CDRF made a difference, but more recently they have lost focus...

              Look at the different message you get from the first pages of these two reports:

              http://www.christopherreeve.org/atf/...008REEVEAR.PDF

              http://www.christopherreeve.org/atf/...009REEVEAR.PDF

              What do you think about NACTAN?

              What about the epidural stimulation study publisched on May the 20th 2011 and the way they have "sold" it to the media and people with SCI?

              Is that OK?

              I know from a direct contact that few people (a minority) in the CDRF board are not 100% happy with what the foundation is doing, so it's not just me.
              In God we trust; all others bring data. - Edwards Deming

              Comment


                #97
                Originally posted by lynnifer View Post
                It's a great idea and I remember DA talking about such a prize many years ago ... but with America in a debt crisis, do you really think that's going to happen? Dr Young talks about how little NIH does for spinal cord injury already?
                DA was a pioneer. I too remeber him suggesting the X-Prize idea many times.

                I think it is likely that it will happen. I just hope the goal will be brave and ambitous enough to move things toward a biological cure in an innovative and much faster way.
                In God we trust; all others bring data. - Edwards Deming

                Comment


                  #98
                  Yeah, when I read stuff on the CDRF website it seems way off target from what the American Paralysis Association used to be.

                  Those two pdf files paolocipolla posted do show up the change of emphasis nicely even from 2008 to 2009. I don't like all the "fun things you can do in a wheelchair" nonesense that I have read during my time paralysed. I'm not saying that it isn't right to live as best you can but any suggestion that paralysis is fun and look at all these fun gadgets you can buy for thousands of dollars so you can go skiing etc rather makes a cure seem unnecessary to ablebodied layman. And it annoys me because I want to be cured. I don't want to be sucked into a life of paralysis for the rest of my life.

                  Wise, 10 years since you were on the board and 20 years on the board of the CDRF - how many years more is it going to take?! rhetorical question

                  Comment


                    #99
                    Originally posted by paolocipolla View Post
                    Sure in the past CDRF made a difference, but more recently they have lost focus...

                    Look at the different message you get from the first pages of these two reports:

                    http://www.christopherreeve.org/atf/...008REEVEAR.PDF

                    http://www.christopherreeve.org/atf/...009REEVEAR.PDF

                    What do you think about NACTAN?

                    What about the epidural stimulation study publisched on May the 20th 2011 and the way they have "sold" it to the media and people with SCI?

                    Is that OK?

                    I know from a direct contact that few people (a minority) in the CDRF board are not 100% happy with what the foundation is doing, so it's not just me.
                    Paolo,

                    Unhappy boards should change what the foundation is doing.

                    Wise.

                    Comment


                      Originally posted by Wise Young View Post
                      Paolo,

                      Unhappy boards should change what the foundation is doing.

                      Wise.
                      As I understand at the moment the "unhappy" members of the board are too few to make significant changes. Therefore I believe they need support.
                      My intention is only to I try to uncover what is really happening with the CDRF. Good and bad things should be visible.
                      Then people will come to their own conclusions.
                      I believe CDRF could do much better than they are doing to cure SCI.

                      Paolo
                      In God we trust; all others bring data. - Edwards Deming

                      Comment


                        Originally posted by Wise Young View Post
                        Paolo,

                        Unhappy boards should change what the foundation is doing.

                        Wise.
                        You would think so - but that is assuming you have a democratic group of board members. I hope that they find the moxy to speak up so they can rescue and re-energise this fantastic organisation and brand.

                        Comment


                          Originally posted by Fly_Pelican_Fly View Post
                          You would think so - but that is assuming you have a democratic group of board members. I hope that they find the moxy to speak up so they can rescue and re-energise this fantastic organisation and brand.
                          If I was one of those unhappy members, it's very simple for me:
                          1- I turn into a pain in the ass for the rest of the members till changes are met
                          2- I get out and start a public campaign against them, knowing all I would know.

                          Of course we don't expect everyone to be honest with themselves.
                          Don't ask what clinical trials can do for you, ask what you can do for clinical trials.

                          Fenexy: Proyecto Volver a Caminar

                          http://www.fenexy.org (soon in english too)

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