Cancer Medicine Skepticism/critical thinking

When skepticism about medicine devolves into nihilism

A couple of weeks ago, the ever-inimitably sarcastic master of pus himself, Mark Crislip, posted an excellent deconstruction of a very disappointing article that was published in the most recent issue of Skeptical Inquirer, the flagship publication of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry (CSI). I say “disappointing,” because I was disappointed to see SI (Skeptical […]

Clinical trials Complementary and alternative medicine Medicine Quackery

Complementary and alternative medicine: The New York Times and the elephant in the room

When I first started blogging, I liked to refer to myself as a booster of evidence-based medicine (EBM). These days, I’m not nearly as likely to refer to myself this way. It’s not because I’ve become a woo-meister of course. Even a cursory reading of this blog would show that that is most definitely not […]

Clinical trials Medicine

The life cycle of translational research

You can tell I’m really busy when I fall behind my reading of the scientific literature to the point where I miss an article highly relevant to topics I’m interested in, be they my laboratory research, clinical interests, or just general interests, such as translational research. As you know, I like to think of myself […]

Clinical trials Complementary and alternative medicine Medicine

That’ll teach ’em for using an actual valid placebo control

I almost feel sorry for acupuncturists these days. Almost. Well, not exactly. Clearly, given the infiltration of woo into academic medicine, acupuncturists are in demand even in the most allegedly “science-based” of academic medical centers. After all, acupuncture is what I like to refer to as “gateway woo,” an unscientific placebo-based therapy that has somehow […]

Biology Cancer Clinical trials Evolution Medicine Science

The Human Genome Project: Hype meets reality

I’ve had the immense good fortune to have trained and ultimately become a physician-scientist during a time when the pace of discovery and the paradigm changes in science have occurred just over the course of my career in medicine and science has been staggering. microRNA, the shift from single gene studies to genomics, the development […]