Feb 24, 2020

This man’s potentially huge medical breakthrough can’t get funding, so he’s trying something desperate

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, business, existential risks


Four years ago, Todd Rider was on top of the world. The MIT-trained bioengineer had developed a radical idea for killing viruses. Initial test results showed that his therapy, called DRACO, could kill every virus he threw it at: 15 viruses were killed in human cells, and two in mice.

It seemed like there was a chance it could be the biggest discovery in medicine since the invention of antibiotics. Enthusiastic headlines praised the potentially world-changing panacea. “Todd Rider Has a Kill Switch for Viruses,” wrote Bloomberg Businessweek. The Verge: “Killing sickness: is DRACO a doomsday device for viruses?” Time magazine declared it one of the top 50 inventions of the year.

Yet over the next few years, things started going wrong. Rider moved from lab to lab and says he couldn’t raise the money to continue testing DRACO, despite, he claims, the continued promise of the concept.


Comment — comments are now closed.

  1. Rose Pinto says:

    Would love to be able to discuss this subject with you Dr Rider, as i have a strong idea/formula we can workshop together..are you on Facebook perhaps, and coul we kindly possibly be facebook friends?…my Facebook name is Rose Pinto
    (I have send you an e-mail, but thus far have not yet received feedback)