Editing Out Diseases with the Help of Bioengineering

I get a lot of "infographics" and many are quite good. But this medium has become a vehicle for commercial advertising. So, some company comes up with an info graphics, maybe makes a good one, sends it around to the bloggers and such, and thier name, somewhere down there near the bottom, gets around. I don't mind the commercial aspect too much, but unless I'm able to vet the graphic, I can't post it, I don't generally have time or resources to do that, so I therefore ignore them.

But this one I'll post because it looks interesting and is produced by a university. Also, we often discuss GMOs around here, and this is a handy dandy look at how that community sees itself, from an important perspective, at the moment.

So .. (click on it to see it in all its bigness)

Throughout history, humans have continuously made efforts to heal and eradicate diseases. In early, less modern times, this process was considered both difficult and strenuous, but with the advancement of technology and bioengineering, humans are developing faster, more effective measures for treating and eradicating diseases. To learn more, checkout this infographic sponsored by the University of California, Riverside’s



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The infographic appears to be more marketing propaganda than good medical science. The marketing aspect seems especially pronounced when the historically greatest category (of unintended, secondary harm) is quite literally the last item before the footnotes. This is not generally regarded as appropriate in analysis circles. As for an example of bad science: The first list is labeled as a subset of those "conditions that make" disease eradication "scientifically feasible". This implies conditions in the list are individually necessary, but as a subset they are not collectively sufficient. That's a fair scope limitation we can accept since we don't need a complete list to do good science. However, when we look at each condition, we run into trouble. Consider the first: "Demonstrated elimination in the past". The logical consequence of that condition would be that it excludes any first eradication from being considered "scientifically feasible". This doesn't seem like something we would want to exclude if, as is generally the case, we think good science is often distinguished by firsts. Similar problems flow down the infographic, and it seems to positively advocate HGE. Further, the position layout, shapes, and nearly all other imagery appears included mainly oriented toward artistic goals rather than to facilitate understanding. My personal view is that work should continue until the intersection of good science, effective learning, and attractive presentation is found - which I hope the creators will pursue in subsequent versions.

By John C. 'Buck'… (not verified) on 16 Feb 2017 #permalink

What I got out of this infographic: University of California doesn't know what a Canadian flag looks like.