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  Topic: How Unpopular Scientific Ideas Succeed, the example of lactic acid< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  
stevestory



Posts: 10127
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 07 2007,23:16   

http://www.nytimes.com/2006....ei=5090

This science isn't settled, but people familiar with science will recognize the pattern displayed here:

Quote
Few scientists questioned this view, Dr. Brooks said. But, he said, he became interested in it in the 1960's, when he was running track at Queens College and his coach told him that his performance was limited by a buildup of lactic acid.

When he graduated and began working on a Ph.D. in exercise physiology, he decided to study the lactic acid hypothesis for his dissertation.

"I gave rats radioactive lactic acid, and I found that they burned it faster than anything else I could give them," Dr. Brooks said.

It looked as if lactic acid was there for a reason. It was a source of energy.

Dr. Brooks said he published the finding in the late 70's. Other researchers challenged him at meetings and in print.

"I had huge fights, I had terrible trouble getting my grants funded, I had my papers rejected," Dr. Brooks recalled. But he soldiered on, conducting more elaborate studies with rats and, years later, moving on to humans. Every time, with every study, his results were consistent with his radical idea.

Eventually, other researchers confirmed the work. And gradually, the thinking among exercise physiologists began to change.

"The evidence has continued to mount," said L. Bruce Gladden, a professor of health and human performance at Auburn University. "It became clear that it is not so simple as to say, Lactic acid is a bad thing and it causes fatigue."


(my bolding)

People familiar with science have seen countless examples like this. H. pylori is another good one. There is a way that unpopular scientific ideas gain acceptance, and it's through hard work and fighting the establishment by doing research too solid for journal editors to refuse. That's how real scientific revolutions occur. They don't occur by manipulating school boards and enlisting housewives and retired computer technicians as agitators.

   
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 07 2007,23:28   

Where was the press release campaign?

As they have "Evolution News & Views" maybe we should get "Intelligent Design News & Views" where every day we have the same press release:


Quote
Today ID did no research, performed no experiments, tested no hypothesis and gave nothing to science. Again.


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stevestory



Posts: 10127
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 07 2007,23:34   

Yeah, you know, in the H. pylori case, for some bizarre reason, Barry Marshall decided to overcome resistance by doing better experiments (even on himself!) and arguing with colleagues. Maybe he should have formed think tanks and written books for the public like The Edge of Spicy Foods.

:p

Edited by stevestory on Oct. 08 2007,00:34

   
  2 replies since Oct. 07 2007,23:16 < Next Oldest | Next Newest >  

    


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