Welcome to a whole new world where we can restore a child's hearing and give them the gift of language. What's next? In the not too distant future, we might repair a child's hearing at birth or give a blind child vision even before she leaves the hospital.
I can't say, on the basis of evidence, that NIH is misdirecting vast fortunes from where they could do the most good within our lifetimes. But I certainly do believe it. What I can say is that biomedical research dollars are subject to the same myopia that tends to dominate our personal lives.
Cost increases in health care have appropriated productivity gains and displaced wage increases contributing to middle class income stagnation, and undermining the very stability of our society. Part of the solution is to reframe the national health research agenda.
The abundance of nutritional research available certainly gives us food for thought when making decisions regarding diet and nutritional supplementation. It can also lead to confusion due to misleading headlines and questionable interpretations of studies.
While we need to celebrate the success stories in medical research that allow us to carry on our lives, we have more work to do. We must ensure that we continue to have a robust flow of scientific discoveries that we can then translate into better health.
According to the New York Times, scientific retractions are on the rise. But elsewhere, audacious, falsified research stands un-retracted -- including the work of authors who actually went to prison for fraud.
When it comes to medicine, all too often we think, "Well, if a little is good for you then more must be better!" But three recently published studies underscore why, when it comes to our health, more may actually be more than we need.