I feel Dr. Greek misleads the public when he insinuates that all our research efforts are put into animal models. Of course, he must recognize there is a large human research component as well.
Today, most scientists believe that it is the combination of both animal and human research that stands the best chance at generating the knowledge we need to understand basic biological processes, disease, and for the development of new cures and therapies. I think it is wise for our funding agencies to use as many tools as we have available in our search for cures.
One should note that the human research Dr. Greek is asking to be funded exclusively has, so far, turned out answers that are much more complicated than he recognizes or wishes to admit.
Two recent articles in the popular media highlight the complications we are encountering in genome-wide association studies in the bumpy road to so-called personalized medicine:
In fact, ten years after the completion of the human genome project, Dr. Francis Collins had this to say in a recent Nature article (Apr, 2010):
“It is fair to say that the Human Genome Project has not yet directly affected the health care of most individuals.”
I my opinion, Dr. Greek (nor anyone else) can claim to have a crystal ball that tells them where the answers to scientific questions are to be found. The existence of such oracle would invalidate the scientific method and how science works.
But perhaps I am wrong (it wouldn’t be the first time!) and Dr. Greek is an unrecognized medical genius. He might actually know where to search for cures. Then, it would be a crime to have such talent go to waste.
I would suggest PeTA and HSUS to join forces to fund his research (of course he could also submit his ideas to NIH). I am sure both animal rights organizations would be very happy to fund work that is apparently guaranteed to yield cures to human disease.
What better prize for them than take credit for funding the discovery of cures for AIDS and cancer without the use of a single animal? How can they pass such a tremendous opportunity?
I can’t wait for Dr. Greek to start working in his Lab and deliver on his promises.