dnaVampires, Ecstasy and a Pharmaceutical Revolution. Here are your weekly five things to read:

A DIY Pharmaceutical Revolution is Coming – If it Doesn’t Kill Us First

Mixael Laufer wants to design an Easy Bake Oven for prescription drugs, and then offer anyone who wants to try their hand at life-or-death chemistry the instructions for how to build their own at home. The revolution will not take place in the streets, but in the kitchens of self-taught scientists seeking affordable prescription pills. “This stuff should be no more difficult than Ikea furniture to put together”, he said. 

From Illegal Drug to Legal Treatment  

The FDA has determined that 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), also known as ecstasy, is a “breakthrough therapy” in the treatment of PTSD. Thanks to this designation, the drug could have a faster path to pharmaceutical approval.  

IBM Pitched its Watson Supercomputer as a Revolution in Cancer Care. It’s Nowhere Close

Breathlessly promoting its signature brand — Watson — IBM sought to capture the world’s imagination, and it quickly zeroed in on a high-profile target: cancer. But three years after IBM began selling Watson to recommend the best cancer treatments to doctors around the world, a STAT investigation has found that the supercomputer isn’t living up to the lofty expectations IBM created for it. 

‘Vampires’ May Have Been Real People With This Blood Disorder

A newly discovered genetic mutation triggers erythropoietic protoporphyria (EPP). This discovery illuminates a novel biological mechanism potentially responsible for stories of ‘vampires’ and identifies a potential therapeutic target for treating EPP.

Why Some Molecules Have Evil Twins 

A tiny change in a molecule’s geometry changes its effects on the human body.