Posts Tagged 'pop-science journalism stinks'

Nature – Where lobbox flows freely and comes ever so naturally.

Got a lot of “science” to moan about today…

Take a look at this from the “periodical” called Nature (27th March)

Link on pic points to:

And what Nature definately WON’T be looking at is the political/and neoLiberal economics that is largely responsible for half the worlds population not having satisfactory water/sanitation.

 And whoever accused Nature (or the BBC) of MASSIVELY spewing out inflated and grossly proposterous speculation should be ashamed of themselves…


Well OK, maybe not then.

Hey, let’ get in on the act. Let’s point to the latest born baby and say something like “LOOK! The last human!!!”. I mean come on, for pity’s sake!

But wait… There’s more from Nature.

Title: “The appeal of sugar goes beyond taste”  Excerpt:  Researchers have found that mice prefer sugary water even if they lack a gene needed to taste it.  Although the mice could not taste sweets, reward centres in the brain reacted when the mice drank water spiked with sucrose, but not when they drank water mixed with a low-calorie artificial sweetener. The results, published this week in Neuron 1, suggest that mice can detect calories without relying on their taste buds — a finding that could change our understanding of the sugar cravings that can plague dieters and contribute to obesity. 

And of course the worthy scientists knocked out the mice’s nasal receptors so the mice couldn’t smell it. They did knock out the nasal receptors – didn’t they? OOPS! And they visually blinded the mice so there was no chance in the mice being able to detect some kind of difference in refractive index change of the sugar sulution and non-sugar solution. They did blind the mice didn’t they? Oh Dear! And they remembered to sever the remaining oral sensors in the mice to that the mice couldn’t tell from the viscoscity and texture of the solution that it was different from the viscosity/texture of the non-sugar solution. They did destroy all oral sensors didn’t they? Crumbs! And they remembered to remove the nerves from the teeth of the mice, so that the ion balance and electrical conductivity of those nerves on drinking sugar solution wouldn’t help the mice learn which was the sugar solution and which wasn’t. They did remember to destroy the mice’s teeth nerves didn’t they? Doh! And obviously they screened the rest of the mouse’s DNA (a task that took Celera  nearly a year to do) to make sure the alteration to what they thought was solely a taste related gene (becasue they know the exact funcition of every gene you see, and no gene could ever be polyfunctional*) hadn’t caused any effect anywhere else in the mouses genome. — sniff sniff, something’s hit the fan! —

Why is it that the proportion of “science” apprears to be complete junk?

But there’s even more…

 The article goes on to say… “They did not, however, favour water sweetened with sucralose, (I’ve got a feeling we’ve been here before) a low-calorie artificial sweetener. This suggests that the mouse body does not learn from the taste, but rather from the calories in sugar.

Notice the article of course does not say… “They did not, however, favour water sweetened with sucralose, an man made trichloro organic artificial sweetener. This suggests that the mouse body does not learn from the taste, but rather from the calories in sugar.”


Rodents don’t like sucralose. Food containing sucralose will not be raten by household rodents. Great for all them hungry Indians and Chinese. And sucralose is lower-calorie than sugar. Hourray!

All hail the cleverly named “sucralose” Only it will allow us to consume multiple more nutrients that some sponging Africans, and we won’t get fat.  And get this… sucralose is completely safe, afterall wikipedia says so. Wikipedia also says the case is proved after “110 studies in humans and animals.” – and that will be made up of 110 studies in animals and 0 in humans, or is that 110 studies in humans and 110 studied in animals, or some other combo? – well, it doesn’t say so obviously it’s not important is it?

Some time ago, The CIA were fingered for altering wikipedia pages in order to demonise the Iranial PM, Ahmadinejad. Of course it is unthinkable that sucralose’s (or “Splenda” as is the other name manufacures Tate & Lyle call it) wikipage has suffered a similar fate, what with a piddly sales revenue of $212 million in 2006 (Johnson,Avery, “How Sweet It Isn’t”, Wall Street Journal Marketplace Section, April 6, 2007 p.B1 )

* sarcasm.

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