If someone told you that your experiment "had a little of the Buchenwald touch," would you keep going? One doctor did, and added a little forced sterilization justified with lies about "mutants." Learn about the experiment that involved irradiating prisoners' testicles.
Here's a delicious little experiment that give us a look at the seedy immorality of its research participants. No, it's not the Milgram Experiment or the Stanford Prison Experiment. It's as simple as a coin toss.
Have you ever heard of serratia marcescens bacteria? Today they are a cause of hospital infections. In the 1960s, they were secretly sprayed across Washington, San Francisco, and New York.
Just when you think you've uncovered all the possible types of unethical human experimentation ever done, history throws a new wrinkle at you. In the early 1970s, a birth control clinic in San Antonio gave indigent women fake birth control as part of a medical study.
When we hear that the pubic louse is facing extinction due to brazilian waxing, we forget how much of a scourge it once was. During World War II, the pubic louse threatened the fate of the world. This led to an odd experiment involving construction-working conscientious objectors wearing special underwear.
This 1908 paper is a gem. It's about recovery from nerve trauma — and the research was done by two doctors who were so interested in the subject that one volunteered to have his nerves severed, just to see how they healed.
A doctor who was once vice president of the The American Cancer Society turns out to have had a dark history. He twice experimented on human beings, injecting them with cancer cells. Learn about the human experimentation of Chester Southam.
"Spanish fly" refers to an actual chemical - one that is much more likely to cause blisters than arousal. It's still not okay to expose kids to it, but a secret experiment in the 1950s did exactly that.
In 1907, food manufacturers used sulfuric acid to control the pH of molasses and fermented drinks derived from molasses. As food regulation got tougher, these manufacturers had to prove that their additives were not dangerous.
Believe it or not, this actually has been tested out, and by no less an institution than the United States Military. Learn about a fear experiment that should have led to a lot of "discharged with sincere apologies," notes on service records.
In 1966, an anesthesiologist published a paper that would change medical history in the United States. It did so by getting people very, very angry. Perhaps people should have been even angrier.
The Cold War yielded a lot of horror stories. One of them was in St. Louis, where low-income housing and schools were routinely gassed in order to practice attacks on Russian cities. Also, there may have been radiation in the gas. Just to make it perfect.
Did you live in Seattle, Washington, in 1976? If you were there on Halloween of that year, and a lady invited you into her house, you may have been the subject of an experiment. Over 300 children were experimented on, and they may never know!
Cornelius P. Rhoads was a well-regarded cancer researcher, that some people to this day suspect of murder. The suspicion sprang from a letter that Rhoads himself wrote one night when he was drunk.
There has been a lot of eerie experimentation over the years, but few experimental journals touch Edwin Katskee's diary. Katskee decided that he would go ahead and test the effects of cocaine. He took far too much, and then documented his own overdose.
You know you're doing something wrong when the Nazis use your behavior as proof that they weren't doing anything wrong. Or do you? The Stateville Penitentiary Malaria Study became a focal point for debates over the ethics of experimenting on prisoners. Guess which side won.
Another day, another foray into the wonderful world of human experimentation! Here's an experiment that was conducted by candy companies and dentists, and involved the inhabitants of a Swedish mental asylum. It also, I think, was influenced by the fairy tale of Hansel and Gretel. Enjoy.
After hearing about so many historical experiments that disregard patients' rights, it does me good to finally find that one - regarding the effects of coffee - proved fatal for everyone but the patients.
Ilya Ivanovich Ivanov was a gifted scientist, a dedicated conservationist, and a practical, grounded man who expanded everyone's understanding of animal husbandry. He also, for years, tried to make human-ape hybrids.
The leopard and the jaguar are renowned for their lovely spotted coats, and tigers for their stripes. Math and genetics show us how we can get the same things for our own offspring — along with why no striped animals have spotted tails.