The Thinking Atheist and ERV!

A few weeks ago, The Thinking Atheist was in town-- He gave us a sweet preview of the new video hes planning on officially unveiling at the American Atheists convention and  signing copies of his new book "Deconverted". Beforehand, he set up some camera equipment and did quick impromptu interviews with fellow OK Skeptics Caleb Lack, Red McCall (more on Reds video later!), and me!

Due to The Thinking Atheists interests/audience, my answers are a little more atheistic-y themed ;)

Of course they are extremely short, so I had to be very general, but if you have any questions or want more info about something I said, leave a comment!

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I thought that "just like a creationist" part was a little on the nose haha.

So jealous of space camp. Would have killed to have that when I was a kid.

By John C. Welch (not verified) on 15 Mar 2013 #permalink

Big fan of The Thinking Atheist show and think the videos you did with him are great. My brother and his wife have just had a baby and I think they've being reading some anti-vac'er stuff because she refused whooping cough vaccine; I think they're having our BCG but only because the baby's travel will be restricted if they don't. I'm not sure if they know I know they're reluctant vaccinators but I posted your vaccines: science v superstition to my Facebook; it's in keeping with other posts I do. ;)

I like the back handed insults (like creationists reject science). Classic.

Do more video's and longer ones too.

The combination of The Thinking Atheists video editing skills and your brilliance have made some of the best videos I have seen from him yet. Thanks Abbie!

By Justin Karstens (not verified) on 15 Mar 2013 #permalink

Great Videos Abbie.

I have a 7 year old daughter and my fondest hope for her is that she has a passion for science and turns out to be a bright beautiful woman like yourself:)

Thanks for your hard work and dedication.
Thanks for all your hard work!

I have a question for you. Why has no one introduced a virus that targets the bone marrow to cause a CCR5 delta-32 genotype, (deleting part of the CCR5 gene) change in an attempt to "cure" HIV. As this would cause the phenotype to no longer have the CCR5 receptor that HIV targets when it attempt to infect the host cells. It would in effect be like giving a person a bone marrow transplant with out giving a person a bone marrow transplant. Further the research done for a bone marrow approach could be used to treat any auto-immune diseases(targeting specific genes and changing them preventing an autoimmune interaction(s))

By Ryan Shea (not verified) on 17 Mar 2013 #permalink

You rock, Abbie! You're articulate, personable, and make these subjects easy to understand, plus exhilarating. I've conducted video interviews in the past, and you are a natural. Please make more.

By tamerlane (not verified) on 21 Mar 2013 #permalink

That's a great post. Cheers. I'll be a regular reader from now on.

At 2:08 you say "but they aren't actually used in the generation of vaccines. It's a research tool."

You are a virologist!!! How can you say these are not used in the production of vaccines? It's a blatant lie!!!

"Poliovirus Type 1, Type 2 and Type 3 are each grown in separate cultures of MRC-5 cells, a line of normal human diploid cells, by the microcarrier method. "

Right. It's only for research.

MRC-5 cells are not 293T cells. I have not used MRC-5 cells, so I am not sure why they are utilized over other cell lines--thanks for the info, Ill look it up! But other polio vaccines are not made human cells, for obvious reasons (attenuation, production is better in non-human optimized cells, etc), so one still doesnt have a 'pro-life' excuse for not getting vaccinated against polio.

I like what you said about everything you said Abbie, except for one thing... You said in the first video that Evolution was more intelligent than humanity. I can understand why you might say, you know, not in the literal sense of it having better knowledge and/or better mental faculties. But I still don't like the implication that evolution is an entity as opposed to a law of nature. Otherwise, great job!

Oh, and I am an aspiring virologist, where do you think would be a good school to go to for virology? I live in Ottawa, Ontario; but I don't know if any of the universities here (Ottawa and Carleton) are particularly good for the subject. What are your thoughts?