Medicine

Part I: the microbiology of zombies Part II: ineffective treatments and how not to survive the apocalypse Part III: “We’re all infected” Part IV: hidden infections Part V: beware the bite?

Black Plague series

Did Yersinia pestis really cause Black Plague? Part 1: Objections to Y. pestis causation Did Yersinia pestis really cause Black Plague? Part 2: Examination of the criticisms Did Yersinia pestis really cause Black Plague? Part 3: Paleomicrobiology and the detection of Y. pestis in corpses Did Yersinia pestis really cause Black Plague? Part 4: Plague…

Snails to the rescue!

Here I thought snails were just cute little creatures that liked to dine in my vegetable garden. You can imagine my surprise to learn there are also carnivorous snails….with venom. New research shows that conotoxin, isolated from cone snail venom, can numb pain. Conotoxin is also reportedly 100 times more potent than morphine at treating…

As hard as it is to believe, there was once a time when I (sort of) gave “Dr. Bob” Sears the benefit of the doubt. You remember Dr. Bob, don’t you? Son of the famous pediatrician Dr. William Sears, who was best known for his “Sears Parenting Library” and is a not infrequent guest on…

Although I don’t want to distract (too much) from an interview I’m flogging today, I can’t help but take note of an lovely development in the world of quackery. Everybody’s favorite quackery promoter and financial scammer Kevin Trudeau has been sentenced to ten years in prison for his scams: Best-selling author Kevin Trudeau, whose name…

Fun! I like this new idea! Targeted Cytotoxic Therapy Kills Persisting HIV Infected Cells During ART I havent talked about ‘scFv’ on ERV yet, but theyre very handy tools scientists are taking advantage of more and more these days. ‘scFv’s are single-chain variable fragments… not an overly useful name, but what they are are basically…

Only mammals express RAGE

RAGE stands for “receptor for advanced glycation end-products”, also known as “AGER”, and new research shows that it first appeared in mammals (Sessa et al., 2014). Despite the name, the receptor also binds other signaling molecules such as HMGB1, S100 proteins, beta-amyloid, phosphatidylserine, among others (Xie et al., 2013). RAGE is reportedly involved in diabetes,…

Some who oppose vaccination do so, at least in part, because of concerns that pharmaceutical companies make profits off of vaccines. Many recommend alternative products, including supplements, in lieu of protective vaccinations. As such, it’s a very…interesting…relationship that the anti-vaccine National Vaccine Information Center apparently has with supplement shill Mercola.com. Both sites are currently down…

Sounds like kind of a technical question. In Irritable Bowl Disease, including Crohn’s Disease, it may be the case that bad bacteria cause intestinal wall inflammation. Or, inflammation could allow bad bacteria to do better than good bacteria. And, that might be an oversimplification because there could be other factors as well, including genetic predispositions.…

Amidst all the sturm und drang after a recent post, I was reminded elsewhere on the blog why I do what I do. So I’m going to do more of it today. You might recall Liza Cozad, wife of David Lauser, who is the drummer in Sammy Hagar’s band. She has an inoperable brain tumor…