Rare Genetic Mutations Could Unlock the Secret to Managing Pain

I’m out in Hawaii working on some defense consulting and was just reading up on some of the latest DNA research…

Apparently, if you have abnormally strong bone density, or a high tolerance to pain, you may be able to cash-in big time by licensing your DNA.

Though before you jump to conclusions about your ability to withstand ungodly amounts of pain, you may want to check with your doctor to make sure you have one of these rare – and valuable – genetic mutations.

I don’t mean mutant X-men that are “walking among us.” I mean people like Timothy Dreyer – a 25-year-old with bones so dense, he can probably get hit by a car and leave the car more damaged.

Call him lucky. Or call it sclerosteosis – otherwise known as “Dreyer’s Condition,” so rare, it’s named after Timothy himself.

The result of uncommon deviations in DNA, only about 100 people in the entire world have it.

You might see where I’m going with this…

Dreyer’s rare mutation, along with others, are getting the attention of drug companies such as Amgen and Genentech.

They figure that studying genetic conditions such as these – and replicating their power – could potentially lead to DNA-based solutions for osteoporosis, managing pain, and lowering cholesterol. That’s huge.

Andreas Grauer, Amgen’s global development lead for a new osteoporosis drug, considers Dreyer’s mutation “a gift from nature” and that “it is our obligation to turnrn it into something useful.”

Rare mutations or not – these “disorders” have launched something of a major space race in the sector for drug companies to access databases of genetic information. The goal: Use the data to develop new drugs to treat these maladies.

One of the other big players, Genentech, is collaborating with Silicon Valley startup 23andMe. And Google’s biotechnology firm Calico is working with Ancestry.com, mining data from a pool of one million DNA samples to discover the root of longevity.

We’re entering an age where researching DNA can help us understand how to control pain… what makes some people live longer than others… and how these tools can help us benefit the human race.

And on the path to uncovering these secrets, there will be some serious money circulating through the biotech industry.

Ben Benoy

Ben Benoy

Editor, BioTech Intel Trader