Australasian Science: Australia's authority on science since 1938

Quandary

Quandary column

Anti-Love Potions

By Michael Cook

What are the potential uses and consequences of a pill that could make people fall out of love?

To view this article subscribe or purchase a yearly pass here.

Third World Bioethics

By Michael Cook

Poverty overcomes informed consent in India, where nearly 2900 people died in India during clinical trials of drugs between 2005 and 2012.

To view this article subscribe or purchase a yearly pass here.

The Secret of Morality

By Michael Cook

Does thinking about science improve morality?

To view this article subscribe or purchase a yearly pass here.

The Dark Background to Immortal Cells

By Michael Cook

The origins of human cell lines used in some of the world’s greatest medical discoveries have been called into question.

To view this article subscribe or purchase a yearly pass here.

Genetic Privacy at Risk

By Michael Cook

US intelligence agencies may be analysing our communications on a massive scale, but genetic data is already proving just as vulnerable.

Michael Cook is editor of BioEdge, a bioethics newsletter.

To view this article subscribe or purchase a yearly pass here.

A Retrospective of the Stem Cell Debate

By Michael Cook

Ten years ago embryonic stem cells were set to transform medicine. Ethics took a back seat to science, but the cures never came.

Michael Cook is editor of the bioethics newsletter BioEdge.

To view this article subscribe or purchase a yearly pass here.

Déjà Vu All Over Again

By Michael Cook

In vitro eugenics could soon make Huxley’s Brave New World a reality.

Michael Cook is editor of the bioethics newsletter BioEdge.

To view this article subscribe or purchase a yearly pass here.

Genetic Ancestry

By Michael Cook

The thriving business of DNA ancestry testing is hawking dreams, not science.

Michael Cook is editor of the online bioethics newsletter BioEdge.

To view this article subscribe or purchase a yearly pass here.

Care in Ancient Societies

By Michael Cook

Archaeologists are documenting evidence that ancient humans cared for disabled members of their community.

Michael Cook is editor of the bioethics newsletter BioEdge.

To view this article subscribe or purchase a yearly pass here.

No Joy for Addicts

By Michael Cook

Neurosurgeons in China are treating drug addicts by destroying a part of the brain responsible for feeling pleasure.

Chinese neurosurgeons are treating heroin addicts by destroying a region of the brain which feels pleasure. Time magazine reports that this “risks permanently ending the entire spectrum of natural longings and emotions, including the ability to feel joy.”

Even in China, zapping bits of the brain is controversial. The Ministry of Health banned it in 2004 – but left a loophole for researchers. Apparently one surgeon drove a truck through this loophole and by 2007 he had done 1000 of these operations to treat severe depression, epilepsy and schizophrenia.