Health Canada is finally making (baby) steps toward better informing the public when it comes to homeopathy. As readers of the blog should know by now, homeopathy is based on really silly, counterfactual beliefs that, if true, would lead to a complete rewrite of biology and chemistry textbooks. Despite this, Health Canada routinely approves homeopathic … Continue reading
Tag Archives: criticism
Read: 23andMe or the Fallacy of ‘More Is Better’
A few months ago, a fellow skeptic told me he was considering personalized genetic testing and wondered what my opinion was on the service. The idea is that any consumer who desires can send a DNA sample to a company, like 23andMe, and get a report back on various genetic risk factors. Sounds like a … Continue reading
Read: How Antibodies Let Biomedical Research Down
Antibodies are used a lot in research labs around the world and scientists tend to trust what’s on the label. But antibodies aren’t as reliable as researchers may think, with some scientists now arguing that “due diligence” in their use should include considerable time and money. I remember comparing my own experimental results to published … Continue reading
I’m Majoring in Science, With a Minor in Wishful Thinking
The infiltration of pseudoscience in academia, either universities proper or academic health centres, is very real. Dr. David Gorski is doing a great job reporting on the American side of this disturbing inroad, but I thought it was time to tackle the Canadian (and more specifically the Quebec) perspective. The Prince Arthur Herald recently published … Continue reading
Read: Does Being Short Mean a Higher Risk for Bad Heart Juju?
Short people are at a higher risk for adverse cardiac events. Tall people are at a higher risk for heart attacks. Short people live longer. Tall people live longer. Which is it? A new study came out (in the much revered New England Journal of Medicine) apparently showing that short people are at an increased risk … Continue reading
Read: Do We Have Too Many Postdocs in the Biomedical Sciences?
My answer: yes. Nature published a very lengthy and well-written piece by Kendall Powell on the postdoctoral fellowship. If you don’t know, the next step for many Ph.D. graduates is not a tenure-track position in a university but a sort of poorly paid specialization called the postdoctoral fellowship, whose funding is often uncertain and whose length … Continue reading
Within Reason Episode 206 – (Bad) Science
Originally posted on Moutons No More:
Jonathan Jarry hosts another edition of Within Reason, the podcast that looks at contentious issues from a rational perspective. This month, is scientific research inefficient or have we grossly oversimplified the situation? We begin with a mad comedic dash through the life of a young scientist to the sound of…
Listen / Watch: The Cost of Cancer Drugs
The only good drug is the one the patient can afford. WNYC radio show and podcast extraordinaire RadioLab most recently did an episode entitled “Worth” in which the show’s hosts and producer investigated the worth of an extra year of human life. They stumbled upon a very interesting story centred on the cost of cancer drugs in … Continue reading
Cracked Science Video 4: Irreproducible
We often hear the science corrects itself in the long run, but how efficient is this mechanism? Jonathan Jarry reports that reproducibility in the scientific literature is not always a given. (Des sous-titres en français seront bientôt disponibles!) Just so you are not too demoralized, the landscape may be changing: http://www.nature.com/news/journals-u… http://www.nature.com/news/metascienc… Continue reading
Read: The Facts on Chiropractic
This is required reading. Questions and Answers about Chiropractic: The Bottom Line by Sam Homola, a retired chiropractor. Continue reading
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