X-Message-Number: 7701
From: Brian Wowk <>
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 16:04:14 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Reply to Richard Schroeppel

Richard Schroeppel" <> writes:

>Most medicines are toxic in sufficient dosage.  AZT certainly is.
>Without more information on dosage, protocols, etc. the toxicity of
>DMF alone seems insufficient reason to prohibit trials.

	The toxicity of DMF is indeed not sufficient to completely
rule it out as a medicine.  It has in fact been looked at as
a potential cancer chemotherapuetic agent (in animals).  But
that is not the point at issue.  The point is that evidence of
expected efficacy must scale in proportion to toxicity before
human trials are undertaken.  Visser may have told the press
that Virodene was a "low molecular weight antioxidant", but DMF
is not vitamin C!  This has nothing to do with libertarianism,
FDA oppression, pharmaceutical company conspiracies, or anything
of the sort.  It has everything to do with good medical science.

	What does this have to do with cryonics?  Last year
cryonics was showered with claims of a cryobiological
breakthrough by an uncredentialed, unpublished (in any field)
investigator who spoke of overturning "the myths of cryobiology"
and achieving perfected suspended animation of whole humans
within two years with a single chemical agent.  When justifiable
skepticism was expressed, cryonicists responded with comments
such as  

>The major researcher, Visser, is a hard scientist, and can be
>reasonably expected to follow rigid boundries on standards of
>practice for publication, disclosure, etc..

	In fact, the pattern of disclosure was

	* outrageous media claims prior to submission (let alone
          publication) of papers

	* claims of a breakthrough in a field with no prior

	* claims of conventional wisdom being wrong

	* claims of conspiracies by vested interests to suppress
	  new breakthroughs

	* vicious diatribes against critics

	* disregard for the peer review process  

To any "hard scientist", these are all bright red flags that
put the probability of a real breakthough somewhere below 1%.
The AIDS claims are worthy of discussion on this forum because 
cryonicists should be aware that the above pattern has now repeated
itself in another field, putting the probability of a real
breakthrough (in either field) below 0.01% IMHO.

	I don't know whether this is "gloating" or not.  But
I believe these observations need to be made.   

Brian Wowk          CryoCare Foundation               1-800-TOP-CARE
President           Human Cryopreservation Services   

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