We hope no one facing a difficult diagnosis has to listen to someone whose basic mission in life sounds like dumping on herself instead of serving others.
A science writer asks, citing several distinctly odd viewpoints aired in the journal that was founded in 1823, including This year, the weirdness continued. A paper in The Lancet argued that certain food experts should be banned from food policy discussions. (Of course, the experts that should be banned are any that are associated with […]
The genome isn’t what it used to be.
Watson won at Jeopardy (with specially chosen “softball” questions) but is not the hoped-for aid to cancer specialists.
For one thing, they had to cope with injuries inflicted by large wild animals they were hunting: Researchers investigated the skeletal remains of more than 30 individuals where minor and serious injuries were evident, but did not lead to loss of life. The samples displayed several episodes of injury and recovery, suggesting that Neanderthals must have had a […]
Which make the effects of mutations harder to predict than hoped. Of course, it’s also a blow for genetic determinism. From ScienceDaily: Ever since the decoding of the human genome in 2003, genetic research has been focused heavily on understanding genes so that they could be read like tea leaves to predict an individual’s future […]
No, really. Here’s what they say in 2018 about the placebo effect (you start to get better when you think you are getting better): “OUR minds aren’t passive observers simply observing reality as it is; our minds actually change reality. The reality we experience tomorrow is partly the product of the mindsets we hold today.” […]
They may be a shortcut for the immune system. From ScienceDaily: “We always thought that immune cells from our arms and legs traveled via blood to damaged brain tissue. These findings suggest that immune cells may instead be taking a shortcut to rapidly arrive at areas of inflammation,” said Francesca Bosetti, Ph.D., program director at the […]
At Mind Matters Today: Early in my neurosurgical career, I was called to the emergency room to see a four-year-old boy who had had a stroke. He was playing on a sofa and fell on his head, twisting his neck. He told his mom that his head hurt—then lapsed into a coma. The CT scan […]
From Mark Fischetti at Scientific American: Bipolar disorder, for example, was more similar to schizophrenia than to major depression even though clinicians may link bipolar disorder and depression, based on their symptoms. These insights could possibly reveal new treatments, says neurogeneticist Daniel Geschwind of the University of California, Los Angeles, one of the investigators. More. […]
From Chuck Dinerstein at American Council for Science and Health: There is increasing evidence that a correlation exists between a person’s social support and engagement and their longevity. At a bare minimum, it makes sense because it is challenging to manage chronic disease or recovery from hospitalization on your own. A new study looks at […]
From Steve Laufmann at ENST, on Nathan Lents’s book Human Errors: A Panorama of Our Glitches, from Pointless Bones to Broken Genes. As a systems architect, I’ve spent decades designing and implementing large and complex systems of information systems — often involving thousands of individual systems. Such systems are normally embedded in complex processes that may […]
From Nathan H. Lents at Skeptic: From neurosurgeon Michael Egnor at ENST: Lents writes: One of the important drainage-collection pipes is installed near the top of the largest pair of cavities, the maxillary sinuses, located underneath the upper cheeks… Putting the drainage-collection point high within these sinuses is not a good idea because of this […]
From Sarah Zhang at the Atlantic: As you read this article, the cells in your body are dividing and the DNA in them is being copied, letter by letter. So long is the human genome—more than 3 billion letters—that even an astonishingly low error rate of one in many million letters could amount to 10 […]
From Mel Greaves et al. at BNC Biology: Paraphrasing Dobzhansky’s famous dictum, I discuss how interrogating cancer through the lens of evolution has transformed our understanding of its development, causality and treatment resistance. The emerging picture of cancer captures its extensive diversity and therapeutic resilience, highlighting the need for more innovative approaches to control. Abstract: […]