Researchers have found that they cannot reproduce the results of 89 percent of 53 “landmark” cancer research papers.

Pioneer cover

From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.

Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.

The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.

He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.

Available everywhere for $3.99 (before discount) at amazon, Barnes & Noble, all ebook vendors, or direct from the ebook publisher, ebookit.

More bad news for peer-reviewed science: Researchers have found that they cannot reproduce the results for almost ninety percent of the fifty-three “landmark” cancer research papers they reviewed.

It is worse than you think. Consider this quote:

Part way through his project to reproduce promising studies, Begley met for breakfast at a cancer conference with the lead scientist of one of the problematic studies. “We went through the paper line by line, figure by figure,” said Begley. “I explained that we re-did their experiment 50 times and never got their result. He said they’d done it six times and got this result once, but put it in the paper because it made the best story. It’s very disillusioning.”


Every July, to celebrate the anniversary of the start of Behind the Black in 2010, I hold a month-long fund-raising campaign to make it possible for me to continue my work here for another year.

This year's fund-raising drive however is more significant in that it is also the 10th anniversary of this website's founding. It is hard to believe, but I have been doing this for a full decade, during which I have written more than 22,000 posts, of which more than 1,000 were essays and almost 2,600 were evening pauses.

This year's fund drive is also more important because of the growing intolerance of free speech and dissent in American culture. Increasingly people who don't like what they read are blatantly acting to blackball sites like mine. I have tried to insulate myself from this tyrannical effort by not depending on Google advertising or cross-posts Facebook or Twitter. Though this prevents them from having a hold on me, it also acts to limit my exposure.

Therefore, I hope you will please consider donating to Behind the Black, by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, as outlined in the tip jar below. Your support will allow me to continue covering science and culture as I have for the past twenty years, independent and free from any outside influence.


Regular readers can support Behind The Black with a contribution via paypal:

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If Paypal doesn't work for you, you can support Behind The Black directly by sending your donation by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman, to
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P.O.Box 1262
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  • Kelly Starks

    Oh great.
    Doctoring medical science data to “make a better story” in the scientific papers.

    Disgusting just doesn’t say it.

  • Phil Berardelli

    I covered science for 15 years and watched this develop, partially in medical research, and most prominently in climate research. The harm done, whether by sloppiness, pride, or outright dishonesty and disdain for inconvenient truths, could take a generation or more to rectify — assuming there’s any attempt to do so in the near future. Utterly shameful.

  • JGL

    If journaists can shape the “news” to an agenda then why can’t scientists shape scientific data to serve their agenda?

    Its probably for the best anyway.

  • Cotour

    So much for reliable DNA science.

    The dead mans identity established with a 99.62% certainty, “The highest probability the test could give”. Will everything boil down to total BS?

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