Science

Serendipitous salivary glands

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This HND piece discusses the recent discovery—by a team located in the Netherlands—of two never-before-seen salivary glands. Although the intent was to do PSMA PET/CT scans of prostate cancer patients, these glands unexpectedly appeared.

If this discovery holds up—and it has already been confirmed in one hundred other subjects—it will go down in history along several other famous serendipitous discoveries. The most well-known of these in Penicillin, but the piece details a few more. For now, the proposed location of these organs is one more to avoid during cancer radiation therapy.

Read the complete article.


A look at mixed methods research

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This HND piece examines the emerging field of mixed methods research, which strives to combine the best of quantitative and qualitative research approaches. Beginning in the social sciences, over the past few years, it has also moved into the health sciences.

Many researchers in the healthcare field have long appreciated that the highly touted randomized double-blind clinical trial, called a "gold standard" by some, has severe limitations. Indeed, we quote former CDC director Tom Frieden himself on that matter. The piece quotes experts and innovators in this exciting new methodology.

Read the complete article.


More on COVID-19

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This HND piece goes into more information on the virus pandemic. We start with a full rundown on the two labs in Wuhan that were handling dangerous viruses, and how they could have escaped—accidentally or otherwise. This includes an explanation of the Biosafety Level criteria and the lack of any publicized audit trail. And then there's the matter of whether or not this pathogen could have been specifically engineered.

We segue into the latest on hydroxychloroquine, and the lamestream media's bizarre attempts to stigmatize that therapy, even going so far as to put lipstick on that pig of a VA study. Also included is an interesting new theory on the pathophysiology of COVID-19.

Read the complete article.


We've got your back: Interesting new research on back problems

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This HND piece puts the spotlight on lower back problems, which are not only the leading cause of disability, they have plagued mankind since we started walking upright. Unfortunately, our backs, knees, and feet—to name a few—would look a lot different if they were purpose-designed for us from the get-go. Instead, these structures have been modified from the original ape design, and trade-offs were definitely made.

Spondylolysis, a vertebral defect that can lead to small stress fractures, is found only in humans, and not apes. We describe research showing that the further from an ape-like vertebral structure humans get, the more likely they are to develop spondylolysis. Indeed, these people have vertebrae that seem to be over-adapted to bipedal life, and are of a different shape.

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Scientific research fraud for fun and profit

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This HND piece discusses the mostly ignored matter of fraud in scientific research. While such fraud can occur in several ways, the most grotesque method is to simply fudge the data, so that the desired conclusion is reached. Given the large number of technical journal articles that are retracted each year, this is a big deal. Moreover, it is not just a "victimless" crime, even if you don't care about the funding agency being defrauded. Deaths, lots of them, can occur if fake data is used to establish medical guidelines.

The trouble is, research fraud is seldom acknowledged, let alone punished. We spotlight a case in which evidence of fraud was overwhelming, but the university involved did nothing, and the professor who fudged the data remains employed. Given the poor quality of academic research, not to mention the utter lack of any conceivable practicality in so many instances, flat-out fraud makes an already bad situation so much worse.

Read the complete article.


A look at retroviruses

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This HND piece discusses the fiendishly clever world of retroviruses—those microbes that actually work their way into your own DNA genome for reproduction. They are "retro" because they turn the usual DNA/RNA/protein model on its head. We start off with an intro on viruses in general, before venturing into those nasty retros.

We then segue into HERVs: Human Endogenous Retroviruses. These are ancient retros that are now a permanent part of our genome, and are likely responsible for multiple sclerosis, ALS, and schizophrenia. There is more ancient virus in us than you might like to believe.

Read the complete article.


EPA appears to be backing off from the discredited linear no threshold theory

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This HND piece explains the Linear No Threshold Model (LNT), as it is applied to radiation and chemical exposure. This model has been consistently disproven based on practical experience, and—as we describe—ending up being a sort of "fruit of the poisonous tree." That's because when the guy behind this theory was starting to advance it, he already knew that it was bogus.

Neat, huh, especially considering that LNT was advanced during his Nobel lecture, and people who have studied the matter are quite confident that even then he was lying through his teeth. We cite examples of how LNT cannot possibly be true, and evidently, EPA's Science Advisory Board agrees. This bodes well for the future. Or putting it another way, better late than never.

Read the complete article.


Whatever happened to science—revisited

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This HND piece goes back to a subject we've covered a few times before: The proliferation of junk science. In this case, we examine a blatant political screed masquerading as science, that checks off so many boxes: 

  1.    Politically correct...check

  2.    Anti-Trump...check

  3.    Based on a post hoc fallacy...check

  4.    Involves a minority group...check

  5.    Suggests that this minority is suffering at the hands of the bad Orange man...check

  6.    Cherry picks data...check

  7.    This cherry picking ignores a much larger trend that destroys the authors' premise...check

  8.    Key references cited do NOT state what the authors claim

  9.    Main hypothesis cannot be proven since there is no control group, nor could there ever be one.

10.    Even if their hypothesis were proven, it is a pointless finding.

 

Embarrassingly bad study, yet originating from prestige institutions, and published in a well-regarded journal.  Read the complete article.


Glyphosate: How A Safe Chemical Is Being Maligned By Greedy Elites

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This HND piece covers the awful junk science and flat-out corruption behind the demonization of the pesticide Glyphosate. This chemical has been rigorously studied since before it went on the market in 1974, and has been approved as safe by every relevant agency in the world.

But in 2015, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) labeled it as "Group 2A (probably carcinogenic to humans). Bear in mind that IARC also puts red meat consumption into Group 2A, and processed meats into their worst category—Group 1 (carcinogenic to humans). To call this action politicized and corrupt is to understate what went on. After all, the guy who got IARC to study this compound in the first place—and was instrumental in the final classification—also got himself a fat consulting contract with two plaintiff's firms going after deep-pocketed Bayer, the manufacturer of Glyphosate.

To make matters worse, a paper came out a few months ago that linked the chemical to an increased rate of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Except the methodology used has been widely criticized—and rightly so—as total and complete garbage.

Read the complete article, and lament what "science" has become.


Be a man...unless it hurts your feelings

This HND piece analyzes the new "Guidelines for Psychological Practice with Boys and Men," published by the American Psychological Association. Sadly, they are heavily influenced by PC diktat, and seem to offer little that would improve the actual mental health of males. The Guidelines, which were developed over a 13 year period, are based on research from the past 40 years, hold that "The main thrust of the subsequent research is that traditional masculinity—marked by stoicism, competitiveness, dominance and aggression—is, on the whole, harmful."

One can only wonder what the geniuses behind the Guidelines would recommend in the case of a five-year-old boy who thinks he's a girl.

Read the complete article.