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What separates good drug companies from mediocre ones? Have biohackers sold out? And who’s going to run the FDA?

We discuss all that and more on the latest episode of “The Readout LOUD,” STAT’s biotech podcast. First, STAT’s Matthew Herper joins us to discuss his recent look at the past 10 years of science at Pfizer and what it says about how the world’s biggest makers of medicine are thinking about invention. Then, we talk about last weekend’s big biohacker conference, where the fringes of science embraced a bit of the mainstream, and hear an interview with a magician cyborg who has 28 magnets and microchips implanted in her body. Finally, Matt rejoins us for a lightning round, covering FDA palace intrigue, journalistic standards, and the importance of cartoon originality.

For more on what we cover, here’s the Pfizer story; here’s more from the biohacking conference; and here’s the latest on the FDA.

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We’ll be back next Thursday evening — and every Thursday evening — so be sure to sign up on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, or wherever you get your podcasts.

And if you have any feedback for us — topics to cover, guests to invite, vocal tics to cease — you can email readoutloud@statnews.com.

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