Emerging as a movement in the scientific community, the Decentralized Science Initiatives (DeSci) are growing at a pace that even a major pharmaceutical company cannot ignore. In fact, Pfizer is now the first pharmaceutical company to vote on the blockchain-based decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) proposals of Germany’s blockchain-based VitaDAO.
The collaboration is part of a recent VitaDAO fundraiser revealed in late January from strategic members including Pfizer Ventures, Shine Capital and L1 Digital among other longevity enthusiasts. The $4.1 million raised will be used to fund longevity research projects and accelerate the emergence of the first VitaDAO biotech startups, with two more in development for 2023.
“Pfizer is now hiring some of its scientists to join the community of researchers that are part of VitaDAO to help incubate some of this research,” Alex Dobrin, community and awareness manager at VitaDAO, told Cointelegraph.
DeSci has contributed to a thriving ecosystem with projects ranging from decentralized biotech foundations to funding vehicles. “Some of the major trends in this field may include research and investment platforms, crowdfunding for scientific research, scientists and the research community,” explained Dr. Tuan Cao, founder of GenomicDAO, a San Francisco-based platform launched on February 19 by AI biotech company Genetica.
This decentralized platform aims to create a community that will lead and manage precision medicine initiatives targeting Asia. Its first subsidiary, DAO, works on stroke prevention, awareness raising, and ischemic stroke research and development.
Worldwide, stroke is one of the most common causes of disability and death from vascular causes. The American Heart Association reports that more than 77 million ischemic strokes occurred worldwide in 2019. Asian populations have a higher incidence of stroke than Western populations, according to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Hypertension in 2021.
GenomicDAO claims that connecting a network of research groups, institutions, organizations, scientists and medical experts with artificial intelligence can reduce the time to launch a new product from 12-18 months to 4-6 months. According to GenomicDAO, community-led initiatives are disrupting scientific research:
“In the precision medicine space, research and development is conducted by a handful of big names in the industry who de facto monopolize the market. Monopoly and centralized pharmaceutical companies alike lead to innovation stagnation; at the same time, they are widening the gap in the delivery of precision medicines to underrepresented populations.”