Mr. Science, a sketch by one of my favorite comedians, the late Ernie Kovacs , http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernie_Kovacs

Some dedicated science lovers:

science tatscience tat 2science tat 3

More can be found at http://www.flickr.com/photos/carlzimmer/sets/72157601351535771/

Below is a neat looking helmut, but can it cure Alzheimers?

Alzheimers Helmut

A January 25, 2008, article in the Daily Mail, “The Helmut That Could Turn Back The Symptoms Of Alzheimer’s 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/health/healthmain.html?in_article_id=510172&in_page_id=1774

Dr. David Gorski is skeptical.  In the blog  “Science Based Medicine”,  http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/.  He speaks of three critical red flags to watch out for before getting too excited about any miracle cure.

“Has the study actually been published in a peer-reviewed journal?”

“Is there a potential conflict of interest or financial consideration?”

“If the answer to any of the above is “yes” ask:   Why is this press release being made now?”

Unfortunately the mainstream media almost never ask these questions.

More on the Alzheimer’s Helmut can be found in Dr. Gorski article.  Some quotes from the article http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/?p=32 :

“Recently, I’ve had a number of people bring to my attention a news story that has been sweeping the wire services and showing up in all sorts of venues.  It is, on it’s surface, a story of hope, hope for the millions of elderly (and even not-so-elderly) who are or will be afflicted by that scourage of the mind, memory, and personality, Alzheimer’s disease.”

“The pathophysiology involves the accummulation in the brain of a protein known as B-amyloid, which forms plaques outside of cells, while neorofibrillary tangles believed to be due to the hyperphosphorylation of a protein know as tau develop in the dying cells.  The exact mechanism by which neuron death occurs is not fully understood, but overtime this process leads to a decrease in the amount of gray matter in the cortex.”

“The treatment about which people were e-mailing me falls into this category (Science by press release), and I haven’t decided yet whether it’s science or pseudoscience.  It could be legitimate.  What I do know, however, is that I don’t like the way the inventors are promoting it by press conference before any evidence of it’s clinical efficacy in humans has been accepted by peer-reviewed publication, leading to a flurry of stories about a new possible “miracle cure” for Alzheimer’s disease grounded in not a lot of science.”

Some Science Poetry

Children of Breath
By Mary Alexander Agner
The Earthman come to my bedside
Because I am the last
and there is no one else
to dance and sing for me
It is so right, the sound,
the intonation, the grief
in their chanting, I forget –
almost – that I taught them
each to speak their alphabets
the once and ancient way
we have done everything.
There are no children of my blood
beacuse I have failed under the eye
of history to make a family
with another fullblood,
the wrong desires, wrong genes.
The children of my breath sing
and sin as though we had not gone
before them, as if tomorrow
there would still beauty
in the island to sing about
Of course, the beach at Tuara.
the snow of Kek Auna, always
the surf against the rocks
always the royalty out dancing.
The land has made us what we are.
Islands empty of us,
do my people still remain
in the slow-limbed, short-throated,
cold bodies who traveled here from Earth?
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