Tag Archives: Harvard

Really, Harvard? REALLY???

You’re not going to believe this one. Scientists at Harvard have discovered a stem cell technique that supposedly REPLACES EXERCISE. O.o. Come ON!

Look at this quote:

“It’s the first step toward a pill that can replace the treadmill,” said co-author Chad Cowan, associate professor in Harvard’s Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology unit.

I’m very skeptical about this to begin with… all we know is that it supposedly works in mice, and we’ve been down that road before with stem cell trial results that didn’t translate to humans. But even if this pill worked (and that’s a HUGE if), it couldn’t replace all of the other benefits of exercise. Thin people who don’t exercise do not live any longer than overweight people who DO exercise (Steven Blair’s research on this question goes back over twenty years.) So statements like the one that Chad Cowan made are actually kind of irresponsible. Do we really need more excuses to not exercise? Can’t you just see someone reading that and thinking, “Oh, yay, now I don’t need to go to the gym anymore?” People don’t need anything else encouraging them to stay seated on the couch popping diet pills.

The Harvard Type I Diabetes stem cell thing isn’t going so well…

Here we go again! Yet ANOTHER piece of stem cell research that was insanely overhyped until somebody discovered a fatal flaw. The short version: there’s been incredible excitement this past year because a new hormone was supposedly created through stem cell work, and it would create an incredibly efficient treatment for Type I diabetes. Here’s a good quote from the Harvard press release:

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