Pharma to support the international space station?

Wired has an article on the potential for the pharmaceutical industry to support the international space station, using the microgravity environment to grow better quality crystals than can be grown on earth, in less time.

Protein crystals can be used to improve drug discovery, but the distance from crystal to drug is very long. Much time and money need to be invested to develop or modify drugs based on crystallographic findings, which makes me wonder what the value of improved crystals might be — enough to justify growing them in orbit?

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  1. Space Cynic
      October 18, 2007

    The idea of using ISS for pharma research has been well refuted with many studies, but that doesn’t stop the boosters from dragging it up every few years….

    I suppose that since ISS serves no real purpose, trying to find any justification for that $100 billion orbiting white albatross should not be too surprising.