Dirty Secrets: Are Laboratory Mice Too Clean?

The hygiene hypothesis may also apply to animal experiments.

THE hygiene hypothesis posits that certain diseases—notably asthma, eczema and type-1 diabetes—which are becoming more common than they once were, are caused in part by modern environments being too clean. The diseases in question result from misfunctions of the immune system. The hygiene hypothesis suggests such misfunctions are the result of children’s immune systems being unable to learn, by appropriate exposure to viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasitic worms, how to respond properly. Read the rest at The Economist.

Animal Rights Activists Behave Like Stalkers

This article was originally posted on RealClearScience.

Every person and organization needs a reality check. It is healthy and vital to seriously consider the opinions of those with whom we disagree. For individuals, this prevents arrogance and promotes humility; for organizations, it prevents corruption and groupthink and promotes transparency. Unsurprisingly, when a viable and intellectually robust “loyal opposition” is absent, bad things can happen. Continue reading