Terra Sigillata

This link is just to quickly follow up on yesterday’s post, “FDA Warns Individuals and Firms to Stop Selling Fake Cancer ‘Cures’.” The US FDA has specifically listed those companies and individuals as well as their specific products that were cited in yesterday’s action:
125 Fake Cancer “Cures” Consumers Should Avoid

And for more information to share with your family, friends, patients, colleagues, etc:
Beware of Online Cancer Fraud

This latter post is of great general value for the lay public to detect red flags for fraudulent cancer treatment or prevention products as well as some general guidelines for detecting health fraud in general.

Concise yet informative – perfect examples of how to communicate truthful information to the general public in the face of far greater volumes of fraudulent online marketing.

Comments

  1. #1 Free Researcher
    June 20, 2008

    I have translated key points of FDA’s message (http://www.fda.gov/consumer/updates/cancerfraud061708.html) and repost it in my blog (in Russian). Thanks for this link – oncology-related fraud is not only USA problem!

  2. #2 milkshake
    June 22, 2008

    I got involved with two independent cancer practicioners – in fact one of them was my thesis advisor (I did the chemistry part, re-synthesizing the active substance). It was interesting experience, if sad. Part of it was that one of them used to be a fully respectable virologist, working on interferon production methods using cell lines at a decent research institute in Europe. Then he got into analysing a quack natural cancer cure for its active ingredients and doing animal testing of those – a legit research program but it did not end there. He found something quite remarcable, related to existing synthetic ether-lipids that were developed for chemotherapy but frankly his chemistry was not completely up to the task. He lacked the resources for a drug development and he tried to do it all by himself in his lab while calling favors on his friends to help him with testing. He and his two colleagues genuinely thought they were doing favor to their cancer patients. They were giving them orally their preparation which was reasonably pathogen-free etc and they did not discourage the patients from the standard chemotherapy. The problem was that in their rush to give their preparations in unauthorised fashion and basically uncontrolled settings and by making public statements about their breakthrough, they antagonised medical community and buried their otherwise interesting results.

    So I believe that some people that invent/promote these remedies got into it for sincere reasons aided by wishful thinking. I guess one first has to fool himself first; fooling others then comes easy.

  3. #3 Abel Pharmboy
    June 22, 2008

    Free Researcher, what a great idea – folks, you have to go to Free Researcher’s site just to see how this looks in Russian. Thanks for the great international community service!

    Milkshake, thanks for the great story – simply fascinating. I was struck particularly by your quote that helps to explain how even well-credentialed scientists can be blinded even by good intentions:

    I guess one first has to fool himself first; fooling others then comes easy.

    Note to readers: at his own blog Org Prep Daily, milkshake describes his account in greater detail, complete with chemical reaction schemes.

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