Norman Allan
 science and philosophy    alternatve medicine       history and misc 
 poetry      gallery      lies my father told me      pipedreams       blog 






Norman Allan : the story

footnotes to chapter 5


1. a link is in the diagnostic weight given to "mentals" in homeopathic prescription.

2. including the dreaded lurgi, though not addressing love.

3. But they never meant that. They rejected Mame's dot-blots paper!

4. from the Botany building, south east across the road and across the quad. Did I mention, Bruce's lab is in the Zoology department.

5. Professor AbouHaidar was working on a viral assay, a biotinylated Southern dot-blot. It works like this: you take a virus, which in this case was a DNA potato virus, and you "digest it", splitting each bit of viral DNA into two single complementary strands. Then you divide this digest into two parts. At this point the two parts are (statistically) identical. Take one half of this now single stranded DNA and call it the "target". Take the other half and call it the "probe".
     The target is spotted out on a filter paper - that is to say, you put a drop of it on a microfilter to make a spot. Then you dilute what's left one part in ten, and put a drop of the dilute solution at a second spot. Then dilute again one part in ten, and spot it out again. Keep diluting and spotting out the successive dilutions. This is to test how sensitive the assay is. After all, you may be looking for a little bit of virus in a whole field of potatoes. You need a sensitive assay.
     Having spotted out all these successive dilutions, you take the filter paper and bake it at 80 degrees centigrade. After baking, the target won't wash off. Next, the "probe". The probe, remember, in this explanation, the probe is made up of the same single stranded viral DNA fragments. These we're going to label so we can see them. We mix them with avidin-biotin. The avidin binds to the DNA, and the biotin will bind to a stain, so we'll get a dark spot where our DNA-avidin-biotin binds the stain.
     Now we take our probe and wash it over the targeted filter paper. Where the DNA in the probe finds its complementary strand in the target it binds to it. Next we wash the probe and target, and only where the probe has bound to its complementary strand will there be any of the probe be left. The rest is washed away. Then we 'develop' the probe/target filterpaper with our stain. Only where the labeled probe has bound to the target will we see any stain. In the test as set it up, the stain gets lighter and lighter with each dilution. It's dark, almost black, in the first couple of dilutions, but fades out of sight at about the seventh dilution.

6. In Homeopathy substances are diluted beyond the infinitesimal till there's no substance left, which is what is meant by "ultradilution".

7. That's 10 to the minus 50 where ten to the minus 30 is like a drop in the ocean, and 10to the minus 37 is like a drop in a million oceans. At 10 to the minus26 we pass "Avagadro's number [which relates to the number of molecules in a "gram molecule"] and would no longer expect to find a single molecule in a gram.

8. in one experiment MAME labeled the target DNA that they would dilute with radioactive phosphorus (P32), and indeed the substance disappears.

9. because Pomeranz name was on the controversial Benvineste ultradilution antigen paper.

10. Lunching yesterday with Lory Berger, my friend (and accountant) with a deep history in stand-up, I asked if he concurred (Milligan as the father of British zane.

11. Lory loved the "bit".

12. At Findhorn, they say, they built them a cairn, and then asked them to leave the barn.

13. "anthropomorphizing": though that word implies that they aren't in fact doing the whatever.

14. A neighbour may have intervened.

15. A Thai Forest Thervadian Buddhist near Perth, near Ottawa

16. if the Tisarina occurrence was spiders.

17. If he can do it, I can do it.

18. plastic wood

19. I've found I can't start a painting when medicated, but not infrequently I "edit" them, work on them.

20. evolved

21. Teresa, back then was pulling away from me, and me from her, and she was infatuated with a petty guru: IP we called him (Intense Paul), so I went out seeking Claudia Moore, the dancer, that one Sunday morning

22. was it heads, or tails?

23. the Gonstead system of chiropractic

24. the first cervical vertebra, also called the "atlas") when it goes out of place (we chiropractors say, "subluxes".)

25. Abayam Sarva Budhebyo