Friday, February 07, 2014

UC Riverside Scientists Release the Results of their Research on Thirdhand Smoke their Grant Application

Scientists from the University of California, Riverside have been funded to the tune of more than $400,000 to conduct research on the effects of thirdhand smoke on wound healing in mice. Today, I reveal that they have reported their results to the public. The results appear in which of the following places?

A. A journal article
B. A scientific conference abstract
C. A research monograph
D. The grant application

The Rest of the Story

Indeed, the answer is D. The results of the research are reported in the grant application itself. Once again, these researchers have demonstrated the miraculous ability to determine the results of their proposed research prior to actually conducted the experiments.

And even more magical is their ability to extrapolate their findings from mice directly to humans.

In the grant application, the researchers write: "The overall goal of this study is to identify how THS exposure affects response to injury and healing, so as to inform policy makers of the dangers of this newly recognized threat."

Interestingly, the proposal does not state: "The overall goal of this study is to identify the effect of THS exposure on healing, so as to inform policy makers whether or not THS exposure is dangerous to humans and the magnitude of such danger if it is present."

Instead, the proposal has already concluded that there are dangers to humans associated with this newly recognized threat.

Moreover, the researchers have determined that their studies will provide evidence of the hazards of thirdhand smoke exposure. No actual research is necessary for this conclusion. They write: "Our results ... will provide regulatory agencies with the experimental evidence to formulate and enforce policies to reduce exposure of infants, children, adults, elderly and workers in indoor environments where smoking occurs."

I don't know about you, but these are the researchers I am going to rely on for predictions before making my prop bets on whether the Jamaican bobsleigh team will crash before finishing its race, whether Canada will win the curling competition, and whether the U.S. or Norway will win more gold medals.

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