Posts Tagged "medicine"


What Makes Cancer Cells Different?

We’ve talked before about how tricky a disease cancer is. Or, if you want to be accurate, how tricky a “set of diseases” it is. I mean, a single tumor is like a world unto itself, full of different populations of cells, each with their own individual set of mutations. That’s crazy to think about.

Cancer is the result of one of our cells’ most basic and core functions, cell division, gone awry. What causes it, in the large sense? How can we use cancer’s tricks against it to try and treat these diseases?

George Zaidan tackles those questions for TED-Ed in the video above. If nothing else, it’s the best combination of beans, fabric and cancer biology I’ve ever seen in a video. Goes nicely with my TED-Ed video on how the human genome is organized in the first place.


In the 1940s, U.S. doctors led experiments that intentionally infected thousands of Guatemalans with venereal diseases. A closer look at how it happened, and who knew:

John Cutler, the young investigator who led the Guatemalan experiments, had the full backing of US health officials, including the surgeon general.

“Cutler thought that what he was doing was really important, and he wasn’t some lone gunman,” says Susan Reverby, a historian at Wellesley College in Massachusetts, whose discovery of Cutler’s unpublished reports on the experiments led to the public disclosure of the research.

“Human Experiments: First, Do Harm.” — Matthew Walter, Nature

See also: “A Deadly Misdiagnosis: Is it Possible to Save the Millions of People who Die from TB?” — Michael Specter, The New Yorker, Nov. 8. 2010


29 Year old Sloan Churman, who was born deaf, reacts to hearing herself for the first time after receiving an “Esteem” Hearing Implant.