Here’s a staggering statistic: it is estimated that up to 75 per cent of cancer drugs do not work on the person they are prescribed for. This is because medicines are developed to work on ‘the average person’ when in fact all of us – and our diseases – are unique. In the new issue of BBC Focus we explore why personalised medicine is coming, and how it’s going to help us beat disease.

Also in this issue:

  • Flying cars and robot butlers - to mark our 25th birthday, we take a look at some of the future tech that’s closer than you think.
  • Us vs them: why your brain hates other people - it turns out that even the most liberal among us may have brains that harbour biases.
  • Is there life after Mars? We catch up with Andy Weir, author of The Martian, to talk about his new book Artemis.
  • Rewild your diet - find out how eating like a hunter-gatherer can supercharge your gut and make you healthier.
  • The nuclear pioneer who escaped the Nazis - the little-known story of the Austrian physicist who launched the nuclear age.
BBC Focus 315 extract


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How much does it hurt?

Aching, throbbing, searing, excruciating – pain is difficult to describe and impossible to see. So how can doctors measure it? John Walsh finds out about new ways of assessing the agony.