A couple of weeks ago, STAT covered Michael Laufer, a mathematics lecturer, who was claiming that he could make Sovaldi from a homebrew method with the reactor pictured above. (You may enjoy friend of the blog Josh Bloom's post on Dr. Laufer's claims.)
Through random clickings, I found this video of Dr. Laufer talking about democratizing pharmaceutical compound synthesis. It's an... interesting talk, but when you're talking about making API and considering TLC as sufficient proof of purity.... maybe you have some more thinking to do.
(I have a bunch of jumbled thoughts about people like him (and also Dr. Vinay Prasad's comments in the STAT article.) But if I were King of Pharma (and it's a good thing I am not), it seems to me that I would be making sure that the whole world knew that there are myriad different ways to get hold of the prescription drugs you need (patient assistance plans, etc..), and that I would be setting the price of drugs somewhere the threshold where politicians broadly begin using you as a political football, and interested amateurs like Dr. Laufer begin to get involved. But hey - maybe the problem is that, no matter how low the prices are set, we're always gonna be someone's target. Hard to say. Readers?)