Outsmarting the placebo effect
Last Updated on February 13, 2018 by Joseph Gut – thasso
September 22. 2014 – I just found this (scientific) article in the last issue of Science Magazine. I am so fascinated by the probability that maybe I could be cured from my disease just by the expectation to receive a pharmaceutically active drug ingredient, while not really receiving it, but some benign pill filled with sodium chloride (NaCl) instead. All being predictably in the genes. Wonderful placebo indeed. What do you think and what is your opinion about this?
The placebo effect—real improvement brought on by the expectation of receiving treatment—can offer significant relief for patients. But a strong placebo response is problematic in clinical trials, where it makes it harder to show that a drug is effective. Based on a small study that correlates variants of a certain gene to a person’s level of placebo response, a former biotech executive has formed a company around predicting who will improve most from a placebo. The gene could offer a way to reduce the size and cost of clinical trials by excluding these people. But some veterans of placebo research are skeptical that this gene will be predictive across trials and for a wide range of diseases.
The full article you can read at the link above.