There’s a problem in the pharmaceuticals industry. The costs of drug discovery, when combined with the costs of testing those drugs, are just too high for the industry to bear.
Europe is trying to solve that problem with a public-private partnership, to reactivate drug screening facilities like the one seen above. Using ROBOTS! From Nature News:
Two sites shuttered by the pharmaceutical giant Merck, one in Scotland and one in the Netherlands, will soon be humming again with the work of drug discovery. But the hum will not be business as usual. It will be the sound of a public–private consortium placing a high-stakes wager: a nearly €200-million (US$271-million) bet that it can boost a languishing pharmaceutical sector by fusing academic innovation with industrial-scale screening, using robots to test chemicals for biological activity.