Discovering cures in 'everyday experiments'
Collective Discovery aims to leverage the intuition and insights of patient communities en-mass to capture and mine information about everyday experiences; this enables communities to "think with data" and collaborate in the formation and support of novel hypotheses. This new mode of community discourse will lead to better decision making, stronger self-advocacy, identification of novel therapies, and inspiration of better hypotheses in traditional research, accelerating the search for treatments.
A fundamental challenge faced by the medical establishment, from general practice to biomedical research, is the lack of detailed data professionals have about the true context of a patient's life. In the case of rare diseases, this failure is particularly poignant as it delays both the diagnosis of a rare condition and limits the information available to form good hypotheses in clinical research. The choices we make about diet, environment, over the counter medications, alternative therapies, and potential off-label prescriptions constitute a massive, ongoing 'everyday experiment'. This unrecorded dataset is a powerful yet untapped resource.