Many factors will affect the development of science in 2018. Apart from the previously mentioned political questions, the finalisation of ongoing scientific research and exploration of space will also have crucial parts to play.
The European Commission is developing further the successor of "Horizon 2020" programme which has provided the science sector with a not-so-trifling amount of EUR 77 billion over the period 2014-2020. The new EU budget for research and development is yet subject to uncertainties due to Brexit, as it may possibly cause a budget deficit at approximately EUR 10-11 billion.
The year 2018 can mark a large step forward in the field of the treatment of cancer and hereditary diseases. RNA-based drugs are capable of solving a number of medical problems, while such phenomena as the toxicity of molecules carrying the genetic material and the question of overcoming the defence mechanisms of the body have been hitherto existing problems. Alnylam Pharmaceuticalsjest company is yet on the right track to develop a therapy using RNA, as it has successfully completed its tests relating to the treatment of hereditary amyloidosis.
It is highly possible that the treatment process of HIV-infected patients will be affected by a revolution throughout the following several months. Over 30 new and effective antiretroviral drugs have recently appeared in the market, while pills only bring effects if taken regularly. It is expected that intravenous therapies will gain popularity this year, guaranteeing effectiveness lasting even up to 3 months from the moment of a single application. What is more, it will probably become possible to use them as HIV preventive measures.
The return of American astronauts to the Moon before it becomes too crowded is planned to take place soon by the decision of president Trump. The reason behind it is that both India and China are planning to place their landers on the lunar surface even this year, while five other companies are expecting to launch their rovers to the Moon as well.
The pursuit of discovering new particles is in progress now. While the Large Hadron Collider of Switzerland has contributed to groundbreaking discoveries, it still has left many questions unanswered. This is why scientists are planning to slightly modernise it to make them observe the disintegration process of particles named B mesons.
FDA has begun reducing the number of market authorisations granted to therapies involving stem cells and the trend is likely to be upheld in 2018. It concerns practically every kind of treatment, starting from those intended for knee joints to those related to neurological diseases.