BREAKING NEWS! Dana Ullman rejects Law of Potentisation

Press Release:

In news likely to send shockwaves (or at least the memory of shockwaves) through both the homeopathic and skeptical communities, Dana “Mr Homeopathic” Ullman has sensationally rejected Samuel Hahnemann’s “Law of Potentisation,” perhaps the most controversial “law” of homeopathy.

Speaking on twitter earlier today, in his trademark highbrow intellectual manner, Ullman, 58, said:

The shocking announcement.

This was in response to an earlier query from the author:

A question too far?

Ullman posits that Hormesis might support Homeopathy in an entirely respectful and professional manner.

This amazing repositioning of Ullman’s position clearly allows him and homeopathy to take advantage of the biological phenomena hormesis (“a biphasic dose response to an environmental agent characterized by a low dose stimulation or beneficial effect and a high dose inhibitory or toxic effect.”) to validate homeopathy, something which homeopaths have been seeking to do for quite sometime now.

However – in adopting hormesis and thus relying on the presence of molecules, Ullman has clearly rejected the “Law” of potentisation, and associated arm waving hypotheses about the “memory of water” and “quantum entanglement”. Thus all homeopathic research and homeopathic remedies at potencies beyond Avogadros limit are no longer relevant. Whilst this may cure the “plausibility problem” from which homeopathy suffers, it does not remove the need for well conducted RCTs.

IF all homeopaths were to reposition themselves in such a way, and drop the whole “more-dilute-equals-more-potent” thing, homeopathy and science may yet find a way to reconcile what have been thus far irreconcilable differences.

However, it remains to be seen how the wider homeopathic community would view such an epic fail U-turn.

Only “Dr” Nancy Malik has responded to date saying “Real (Homeopathic) medicine cures even when Conventional Allopathic Medicine (CAM) fails” although this is clearly irrelevant.

Dave Briggs, XDNN, Moscow.

EDIT – extra Ullman post added for more context.

EDIT – A bit more context and explanation.

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10 Responses to BREAKING NEWS! Dana Ullman rejects Law of Potentisation

  1. Dana Ullman says:

    Breaking news!? You cannot read or understand…and you love to dwell in spreading mis-information…but that is not surprising consider your embarrassingly poor scientific attitude and aptitude.

    The good news is that your blog is in the top 14 million out there…good evidence for what people think about ya…

    • xtaldave says:

      1) Wow – I am accused of spreading mis-information by DANA ULLMAN?!

      “Pot – this is Kettle – you are black”

      2) Come on Dana – if you are to claim hormesis as a mechanism by which homeopathy works, you must see that:

      i) this is incompatible with Hahnemann’s law of potentisation.
      ii) hormesis requires the presence of actual molecules to work.
      iii) If hormesis is a mechanism by which homeopathy works at concentrations up-to Avogadro’s limit, how do remedies like Nat Mur work – where the supposedly active molecules within the remedy are already present in the human body at much higher levels than found in a 6C remedy, for example?

      I think hormesis is a really interesting biological phenomenon, but if homeopathy is to claim it as a mechanism, it must make clear what it is do to about anachronisms like the law of potentisation.

      And for the record, your attacks on my “scientific attitude and aptitude” are not borne out by my publication record, which is pretty good for someone in their second postdoctoral post. I have papers in Nature and Molecular Cell, two of the more prestigious journals one can publish in in the life sciences.

    • xtaldave says:

      Come Dana, when are you going to acknowledge that hormesis still requires molecules of an active ingredient? Remedies beyond 12C lack this.

    • Anonymoosh says:

      Dana, typical Ad Hominem attack, show your evidence , quote your sources,your reply is NOT how the game is played.

  2. Nic says:

    Just for interest’s sake, what’s your explanation for the positive homoeopathic RCT that are published in valid scientific journals? I am quite neutral on the whole homoeopathic evidence thing, but I have seen many positive RCT for homoeopathy? Surely a placebo should be just as good as the “other” placebo?

    • xtaldave says:

      Hi Nice, fair question.

      You’d have to take each rct separately (something I’ve done for many if them here http://wp.me/pSvY2-74 ).

      However, generally homeopathic RCTs suffer from 2 sets of faults:

      1) insufficient numbers of patients. An rct with 6 patients cannot accurately predict the efficacy if anything.

      2) Methological flaws. Insufficient or incorrect controls. Lack of blinding. No or poor randomisation. Bad trail design.

      That covers mist of them. Let us not forget that homeopathy has not effectively refuted the null hypothesis that the effects of homeopathic remedies are down to the placebo effect + observer bias.

      It should also be noted that given the cutoff of p < 0.05 that is impossed by science in general, that 1 in 20 RCTs would be positive by simple random chance.

    • xtaldave says:

      As for your final comment about placebos, the placebo effect is not confined to homeopathy, and any sort of medical intervention is subject to some degree of placebo effect – ‘conventional’ remedies are often also tested against placebo, as a quick search of pubmed should reveal.

      Hth,
      Dave.

    • xtaldave says:

      Sorry “Nic”. Damn you autocorrect!

  3. magufo says:

    Again distorts XtalDave!

    Ullman refers to low doses. There are homeopathic remedies as a power that even 6D have active ingredients. In the case of the hormesis you in this post “review” VanWijk work on conditioning post without giving a strong argument for its rejection, the most pathetic is that resorts to ad hominem ridicule and putting a link to a video of Charlenne such a Werner. (It will also miss the video of Mitchell & Webb?):

    https://xtaldave.wordpress.com/2010/01/29/clutching-at-homeopathic-straws/

      So the 10:23 campaign is widely exposed as astroturf effect of Sense About Science and Meyerside Skeptiks. (Including the fraud of Horizon program and the biases of the Martin Blandin in 2005 paper)

    Moreover, it is false that research Ullman reject “water memory”. In this case we speak of ultrahigh doses that do not contain, theoretically active.

    • xtaldave says:

      Again distorts Magufo!

      I have set out my entirely reasonable position on homeopathic remedies which have actual active ingredients in blog comments on numerous occasions, Magufo.

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