Monday, October 29, 2012

The Liberation Procedure

Dr. Paoli Zamboni is an Italian vascular surgeon with a controversial theory about multiple sclerosis.  He believes that blocked veins prevent blood from draining from the head, causing iron to accumulate in the brain.  His method of treatment, called the "liberation procedure" -- surgically opening the veins to restore normal blood flow -- has become hugely popular among desperate MS patients.  But there is little scientific evidence to suggest that the procedure actually treats MS successfully.

You can read about the story of the liberation procedure in this excellent article in the New York Times Magazine by Paul Tullis.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Faith-based stem cell treatment


 "I sincerely hope The Grace of Stem Cells instills faith to people with incurable diseases to be treated," says Dr. Ra, CEO of RNL Bio.  The press release is here.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Dr. Hunter S. Thompson on George McGovern




"This may be the year when we finally come face to face with ourselves; finally just lay back and say it — that we are really just a nation of 220 million used car salesmen with all the money we need to buy guns, and no qualms at all about killing anybody else in the world who tries to make us uncomfortable. The tragedy of all this is that George McGovern, for all his mistakes... understands what a fantastic monument to all the best instincts of the human race this country might have been, if we could have kept it out of the hands of greedy little hustlers like Richard Nixon."

-- Hunter S. Thompson

Thursday, October 18, 2012

We're Number Three!

Minnesota has the third most indebted students in the country.  Read about it here.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Celltex v Turner battle in Austin: audio now online

Leigh Turner of the University of Minnesota Center for Bioethics sat down with Celltex official Andrea Ferrenz, Texas State Rep. Rick Hardcastle, and Texans for Stem Cell Research chairman David Bales at the Texas Tribune Festival last month.  The topic: "Is Texas' Stem Cell Policy Good For Texas?"  You can listen to it here. 

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Off Label to close Local Sightings Film Festival in Seattle on October 4

From the Local Sightings website:

"Winner of our 2012 Northwest Film Fund, Michael Palmieri and Donal Mosher’s Off Label offers a sensitive and poetic examination of the medicated margins of American society. Instead of taking a clinical look at the issue of pharmaceuticals, Mosher and Palmieri offer the personal stories of eight individuals — a young medic who was stationed at Abu Ghraib, a woman whose son experienced a psychotic break and committed a violent suicide in an antidepressant marketing study, a bipolar woman who takes eighteen different prescription drugs a day, a man irremediably damaged by experiments conducted on him in prison, a medical anthropologist and a variety of individuals who make their livings as human guinea pigs in drug test trials. Like their first film October Country, Off Label is reflective work, allowing its subjects to speak as one voice, coming up from the depths of the margins of American society. Multiple variations on the Carter Family song ”No Depression In Heaven” guide us along an astonishingly moving and excruciatingly compelling portrait of a nation in thrall."

Monday, October 1, 2012

Gambling on Effexor

Daniel O'Sullivan writes:

"In June last year, three months into a prescription for anti-depressant drug Effexor, former financial analyst Tim Hillier left his hotel to wander the empty streets of Alice Springs in an attempt to clear his head. An hour earlier, he had wagered $80,000 — almost the entirety of his life-savings — on a first-round Wimbledon tennis match featuring Aussie hope Sam Stosur."

Read the story here,