I’m Positive it’s Science


Even if sometimes the results aren’t what everyone was expecting. 

I was noodling around and came across a couple of things I thought I’d toss on here as I’m out of time this morning. Firstly, this is a scathing abstract, and made me giggle a little. If you read between the lines, as I did, you get the exasperation over this overrated fad supplement/food. I’ve said it before – turmeric is fine as a spice or colorant. But the very low bioavailability of cucurmin (the active molecule to which medicinal properties were attributed) means that your money literally goes to waste as it passes right out of your body again. Don’t spend money on it, above what your tastebuds might enjoy (not a lot, if you overdo turmeric it’s quite bitter). 

Curcumin is a constituent (up to ∼5%) of the traditional medicine known as turmeric. Interest in the therapeutic use of turmeric and the relative ease of isolation of curcuminoids has led to their extensive investigation. Curcumin has recently been classified as both a PAINS (pan-assay interference compounds) and an IMPS (invalid metabolic panaceas) candidate. The likely false activity of curcumin in vitro and in vivo has resulted in >120 clinical trials of curcuminoids against several diseases. No double-blinded, placebo controlled clinical trial of curcumin has been successful. This manuscript reviews the essential medicinal chemistry of curcumin and provides evidence that curcumin is an unstable, reactive, nonbioavailable compound and, therefore, a highly improbable lead. (Read the paper here)

And then there is this. Shocker… a study on tropical fish shows that unlike earlier studies that cannot be reproduced, fish are not behaving suicidally due to climate change. I know, right? 

Ok, sarcasm aside. There’s a long quote I really liked here. 

“Some people may be surprised by these findings, but that’s how science operates: it’s a normal and healthy process to question published results. Sometimes they hold up, and sometimes they don’t. Ultimately, it’s the accumulation of evidence that matters and brings us closer to the truth,” said Binning, an assistant professor at UdeM.

“It’s not because some researchers have found one thing that we should take it at face value. As scientists, we should always be critical of what we read and what we see. That’s how science advances.”


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