Science Spam

As a scientist you are spammed by lab vendors, congress chairmen and journal editors. Here is a selection of the spam that I received during the last 24 hours, all “journal” titles that I have never heard before.

 


Journal of Clinical and Experimental Otolaryngology (Seoul, Korea)

Bildschirmfoto 2015-04-19 um 09.17.00

 


Jacobs Journal of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine (Austin, USA)

Bildschirmfoto 2015-04-19 um 09.16.48

 


Current Trends in Technology and Sciences (Bhopal, India)

Bildschirmfoto 2015-04-19 um 09.13.04

 


Journal of Molecular Pathophysiology (Ankara, Turkey)

Bildschirmfoto 2015-04-19 um 09.15.24

 


Heart, Lung, Vessels (Pavia, Italy)

Bildschirmfoto 2015-04-19 um 09.13.37

 


Jökull Journal (Reykjavik, Iceland)

Bildschirmfoto 2015-04-19 um 09.13.48

 


The Journalof Functional Foods in Health and Disease (Dallas, USA)

Bildschirmfoto 2015-04-19 um 09.17.39

 


International Journal of Latest Research in Science and Technology (Haryana, India)

Bildschirmfoto 2015-04-19 um 09.17.15

On verification

Most recently, I came across of another euphoric hygiene hypothesis review and wonder how this could ever happen. The evidence here is mixed and largely ambiguous.
Probably it would be best to follow some basic journalistic rules as summarized in the online “Verification Handbook for investigative reporting”

As with the verification of user-generated content in breaking news situations, some fundamentals of verification apply in an investigative context. Some of those fundamentals, which were detailed in the original Handbook, are:

– Develop human sources.
– Contact people, and talk to them.
! Be skeptical when something looks, sounds or seems too good to be true.
! Consult multiple, credible sources.
– Familiarize yourself with search and research methods, and new tools.
– Communicate and work together with other professionals — verification is a team sport.

Journalist Steve Buttry, who wrote the Verification Fundamentals chapter in the original Handbook, said that verification is a mix of three elements:

– A person’s resourcefulness, persistence, skepticism and skill
– Sources’ knowledge, reliability and honesty, and the number, variety and reliability of sources you can find and persuade to talk
– Documentation

No wonder pill

“In the case of religion, we put our faith in gods. And in nutrition, we have vitamins,” writes journalist Catherine Price in Vitamania, in which she traces vitamin crazes from the 1920s to the present.

Harvard Magazine reports about a new cancer vitamin D study. It includes more than 1,000 patients with metastatic colorectal cancer but going into the details it is a phase 3 clinical trial of chemotherapy and NOT a clinical trial of vitamin D. Vitamin D serum levels are used for posthoc stratification only although we know that these kind of studies are always misleading.  At least HM quotes VITAL research Manson with

Clinical enthusiasm for supplemental vitamin D has outpaced available evidence on its effectiveness

I wish the VDAART chairs at  Brigham and Women’s Hospital would have a similar realistic assessment. Their results are overdue with June 2014 ending of data collection for the primary outcome. Is it just the simple fact that vitamin D is not a wonder pill?

How religious is the world today

I received an interesting mail today that will be under embargo until next Monday. It is an Gallup International press release from a poll of 63,898 persons who were interviewed globally. In each country a representative sample of around 1000 men and women was interviewed either face to face or online with poll being conducted during September 2014 – December 2014. And voila, here are the results:

ResultsUnweighted Totals :A religious personNot a religious personA convinced atheist
Total638980,630,220,11
AFGHANISTAN21000,870,090
ALGERIA10000,90,080
ARGENTINA10000,720,160,04
ARMENIA10670,930,030,02
AUSTRALIA10060,340,440,14
AUSTRIA10000,390,440,1
AZERBAIJAN10520,340,540
BANGLADESH10000,930,050
BELGIUM10000,440,30,18
BOSNIA10000,650,290,03
BRAZIL20020,790,160,02
BULGARIA10080,520,360,03
CANADA10110,40,410,12
CHINA11500,070,290,61
COLOMBIA10020,820,140,03
CZECH REPUBLIC10000,230,450,3
DENMARK5050,420,40,12
ECUADOR9730,680,270,01
FIJI10020,920,060,01
FINLAND9930,560,320,1
FRANCE10000,40,350,18
GEORGIA10000,930,060,01
GERMANY10000,340,420,17
GREECE10000,710,150,06
HONG KONG5000,260,360,34
ICELAND10570,510,30,14
INDIA5560,760,210,02
INDONESIA5300,820,150
IRAQ0000
IRELAND10050,450,410,1
ISRAEL5750,30,570,08
ITALY10230,740,180,06
JAPAN12000,130,310,31
KAZAKHSTAN5000,640,190,08
KENYA10150,890,070,02
KOREA15000,440,490,06
KOSOVO11040,830,070,01
LATVIA10050,40,410,09
LEBANON10000,80,160,02
MACEDONIA12040,880,080,02
MALAYSIA5000,720,20,03
MEXICO10010,680,240,04
MOROCCO10000,930,040,01
NETHERLANDS10500,260,510,15
NIGERIA8000,830,140,02
PAKISTAN20000,880,10,01
PALESTINIAN TERR.7530,750,180,01
PANAMA12000,810,120,02
PAPUA NEW GUINEA4860,830,040
PERU12000,820,110,02
PHILIPPINES10000,860,120,01
POLAND10040,860,10,02
PORTUGAL10010,60,280,09
ROMANIA10550,770,160,01
RUSSIA10000,70,180,05
SAUDI ARABIA0000
SERBIA10150,720,180,03
SOUTH AFRICA5000,910,080
SPAIN10440,370,350,2
SWEDEN10030,190,590,17
SWITZERLAND10030,380,460,12
THAILAND6140,940,010,01
TURKEY10080,790,130,02
UK10000,30,530,13
UKRAINE5000,730,170,07
USA10160,560,330,06
VIETNAM5000,340,410,13
ZIMBABWE0000

Like it or not, it’s one of the main driving forces of the world.