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Vaxophobia

What if we’ve been approaching the anti-vaccine phenomenon the wrong way? We’ve been operating under the assumption that anti-vax is fundamentally a misunderstanding, reflecting lack of knowledge of immunology and statistics. But what if it is actually a culturally mediated phobia like triskaidekaphobia, fear of the number 13? That would explain why fear of vaccines […]

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Mother blame 2019: microbiome edition

It’s always the mother’s fault. There is a long and storied history of mother blame extending back millennia. Women who couldn’t conceive were labeled “barren” even though infertility is caused by male factors 20% of the time. Women who had only daughters and no sons were blamed for the sex of their children, even though […]

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Breastmilk, the microbiome and misogyny

Imagine a study that compared the mouth microbiome of men and women and found that up to 1/3 of the common mouth bacteria differed between men and women. Plausible, right, since male and female hormones are different and might exert some impact on the bacteria that live inside mouths? Now imagine that the researchers concluded […]

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