I can’t always muster the energy to read pseudoscience

If you’d like to get depressed about the state of scientific publishing, skim through this thread by Elisabeth Bik. It’s about someone named Alireza Sepehri who is publishing utter garbage in various journals, claiming that there are male and female flu viruses, cancers from men and women have opposite polarity, 5G radiation punches holes in nuclear membranes and viruses spontaneously generate in the cavities, etc., etc., etc.

I was briefly tempted to read one of these terrible articles, but was suddenly struck with a brief flash of wisdom and realized that I could determine the quality of the work with a brief glance at the abstracts or the figures, and dismiss them instantly.

Which makes me wonder…how much effort the “reviewers” put into critically reading the submitted papers. And now I’m wondering — maybe the reviewers for that journal are imaginary, and the journal should be shut down. And maybe, in my world of fantastical reasonableness, publishers couldn’t make bank churning out garbage journals like the Journal of Biological Regulators and Homeostatic Agents.


  1. says

    Reminds me of “Plandemic”.
    Oh wait there it is. Coronavirus. Right there in the abstract. 5G check, “Inductor like structure”? What does that even mean? I’m more familiar with physics and chemistry than genetics and viruses, but if this person is using “inductor” the way I use it and the way most engineers use it, it’s an electronic device that can be used to resonate with radio waves.

    This person is actually claiming that DNA can resonate by induction with 5G radio waves. This is Time Cube level crazy.

  2. weylguy says

    Dr. Myers, you’re wise not to read that utter garbage. While there’s no evidence that a limit exists as to how much knowledge the human mind can store, there appears to be a minority (let’s call them Republicans) whose brains have absorbed a maximum amount of information, and any additional incoming information replaces that which is already present. Over time, whatever useful and/or factual information their brains retain gets replaced by conspiracy theories, Trumpian lies and related garbage, rendering these people not only useless to society but inherently dangerous.

  3. says

    I recently reviewed a paper that found several homeopathy journals are indexed in PubMed. They do in fact have peer reviewers but they’re all part of the cult. Maybe people should contact NLM about this.

  4. R. L. Foster says

    I should send in a paper that claims that microwaving food causes beta decay radiation that will cause irreparable genetic damage when said food is consumed. (On second thought maybe not. I can imagine that a certain subset of the population will believe it.)

  5. leerudolph says

    cervantes@4: “They do in fact have peer reviewers but they’re all part of the cult.”

    So they are, in fact, peers of the author(s).

  6. jrkrideau says

    @ 3 springa73

    It’s the trans viruses that cause the conclusion.

    @ 4 cervantes
    It is amazing the number of predatory and just plain wacky journals one can find in PubMed. Homeopathy journals sound perfectly normal.

  7. raven says

    I had no idea that there were “male” and “female” viruses.

    There are also nonbinary viruses and gender fluid viruses.

  8. llyris says

    Regardless of the stupidity about male and female viruses, why would anyone need to give someone a horrible and potentially fatal disease to determine the gender of a fetus? Is it so impossible to just go get a perfectly safe 20 week ultrasound like a normal person?