When I first started out in medical communications, I had no idea what I was in for. Every basic research scientist likes to explain how their work could lead to a new drug for cancer. It's how we get our grants funded, and it's how we convince our relatives around the Thanksgiving dinner table that our work is relevant. However, as a very basic scientist (the only living things I worked with were bacteria, and that was just so I could bust them open and take their proteins), I rarely had to think about the practical and logistical aspects of what it takes to not just find a drug that works, but find a drug that people can actually take.
After five years in medical communications, I still enjoy learning about how drugs work - what proteins they target, what signaling pathways they turn on, etc. But, I'm more in tuned to thinking about how drugs will work in the real world - how might the side effects or monitoring requirements disrupt a patient's life, are the dosing requirements too cumbersome, did the clinical trials study the right patient population?
This blog is a culmination of all the things I've had to master to shift gears, and some of the tips and tricks I've learned along the way. It is my hope that this blog will be a resource for other basic scientists who find themselves having to think about the practical side of medicine and for young medical writers starting out to help them develop more polished, professional pieces.