Biology & Chemistry KS3/4: Targeted research

Professor Brian Cox learns that drugs are not discovered by accident, but that the process usually begins with a library of chemicals that can be tested in automated processes to find out which ones are potentially beneficial.

However, he goes on to explain that targeted research does not tend to report negative results of these trials, unlike traditional academic journals, which could potentially be worrying.

This short film is from the BBC series, Science Britannica.

Teacher Notes

This short film could be used as a stimulus to discuss the different ways that scientists work and how they communicate their research findings.

Students could be encouraged to compare science on an industrial scale to experiments conducted by an individual. What are the advantages and disadvantages of each approach?

What are some fields other than medicine that rely on targeted research?

Curriculum Notes

This short film will be relevant for teaching biology and chemistry at KS3 and KS4/GCSE level.

This topic appears in AQA, OCR, EDEXCEL, CCEA, WJEC, SQA.

More from Science Britannica:

Global warming resistant GM crops
John Hunter and public engagement in science
How CERN helps us understand the Big Bang
Sir Isaac Newton and the scientific method
John Tyndall and blue skies research
Who was Henry Cavendish?
Who was Humphry Davy?
William Perkin and making scientific discoveries by chance