Science in the Media

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Category archives for Science in the Media

Are Generics Really Just As Good?

When generic drugs started to become popular, many people were skeptical.  Many people got switched from brand name to generic products, and complained that the generic did not work as well. These complaints often were treated with skepticism.  After all, generic drugs contain the same active ingredient(s) as the brand-name product, but cost less.  Plus,…

Judith Warner has some insightful essays in the NYT column, pertaining to the long-raging question about whether psychiatric patients are overmedicated or undermedicated. One of the essays addresses the question directly: Overselling Overmedication Judith Warner February 14, 2008 …In the book, Barber argues that Americans are being vastly overmedicated for often relatively minor mental health…

Bodies Revealed Controversy

A fellow blogger, Logtar,  tipped me off to a controversy, and asked if I had anything to say about it.  The controversy has come about over an exhibit: Bodies Revealed.  It’s a traveling exhibit that displays plastinated human cadavers.  The exhibit was organized by Premier Exhibitions, Inc. A bit of background can be gotten from…

No Suicide Cringe

Usually I cringe when I see yet another newspaper article about suicide.  But I always read them.  This time, I did cringe, but needlessly.  The article turned out to be OK. F.D.A. Requiring Suicide Studies in Drug Trials By GARDINER HARRIS January 24, 2008

Cannabis Extract for Cancer?

Any time something related to a medical use for cannabis is found, it makes headlines.  Mostly, the interest is generated by the relationship to an illegal drug.  Sometimes, though, the media do a decent job of reporting the real issue. Researchers at the California Pacific Medical Center Research Institute have announced that one of the…

Air Tilly

Tilly is an eagle that has been trained to fly with a pair of video cameras.  The cameras weigh less than 30 grams and can transmit video signals more than a mile.   I gather this was shown on Aminal Planet, but you can see it on the Internet here.

Is It Just Me?

Is it just me, or do others find this article to be offensive? When the Patient Is a Googler By SCOTT HAIG Thursday, Nov. 08, 2007 We had never met, but as we talked on the phone I knew she was Googling me. The way she drew out her conjunctions, just a little, that was…

Psychotherapy Changes Brains

The researchers did fMRI of brains of persons with Borderline Personality Disorder, before and after psychotherapy.  This was a small study, using a design that would be difficult to use routinely, but it is provisionally interesting.  Difficult, because the patients received 12 weeks of inpatient therapy (perhaps routine in Germany; nearly impossible in the USA).…

Humans to Undergo Speciation?

PZ has already written about this, primarily to dismiss it as nonsense.  He is correct, but there is one point (or two) that I want to add. Oliver Curry  is described in WIkipedia as an evolutionary theorist as well as a political theorist.  He was granted a Ph.D., on the topic of morality as natural…

Heavy Hitter Favors Open Access

Howard Hughes Medical Institute has announced a policy to promote open-access publication of scientific papers.  They are not only supporting it philosophically, but financially as well.  In fact, they are not only supporting it, but requiring it for their researchers: HHMI Expresses Support for Springer Open Choice September 27, 2007