Pseudoscience / Science Criticism

Read: Deconstructing Bad Science or How I Learned to Stop Acupuncturing and Love the Placebo

As most scientists learn the hard way, not all research studies are equal. It is not always easy, however, for members of the public to discern between a well-crafted study and a flawed one, especially when reading the sensationalized Cliff Notes appearing on the news. Dr. Steven Novella, neurologist and host of the fantastic weekly … Continue reading

Unveiling Culprits, Part 2: The Hypnagogic Jab
Science Criticism / Science Education

Unveiling Culprits, Part 2: The Hypnagogic Jab

As I write this, British multinational pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline is conducting a study in my backyard. No, there are no lab-coat-clad scientists bagging petunias in my garden. I don’t have a garden, much less a backyard. (And, for what it’s worth, I think “Bagging Petunias” would be an awesome band name) By backyard, I mean … Continue reading

Unveiling Culprits, Part 1: The Immunological Morpheus
Science Education

Unveiling Culprits, Part 1: The Immunological Morpheus

As medical research pushes back the veil on the causes of certain well-known diseases, we are sometimes surprised at the unlikely culprits. It sounds obvious today, for instance, that cigarette smoking can cause lung cancer: one can easily picture the smoke snaking down to the lungs and leaving a nasty deposit. Sometimes, however, the connection … Continue reading

Science Education

Jargon: -omics (The fields of biological study concerned with the totality of a molecular type)

-omics: this bugger is tough to adequately describe. In short, it represents all the fields of study in biology that concern themselves with every molecule of a certain type. For instance, the field of “genomics” will look at the entire genome and not at individual genes. The field of “proteomics” will study every protein in, … Continue reading

Science Criticism

Read: Dr. John Ioannidis on Why You Shouldn’t Trust Scientific Findings (But Science Is Still Awesome!)

Dr. Ioannidis is a hero of mine. In fact, he’s a hero of many a scientist who has found him- or herself shaking their heads upon finding out how the contemporary scientific establishment functions. He came to Montreal in October to give a public science talk on the lack of reproducibility in the scientific literature. … Continue reading