Have we found our panacea for all diseases (again) in Crispr? It is as much a malady afflicting the media as it is a reflection of the almost all-consuming human desire for a cure-all to every illness that leads to the constant heralding of ‘the next big thing’ in medicine that will completely rid us of all medical issues.
Researchers and the business backers that they do the work of have a significant vested interest in selling these ‘cures’ to the public, often because the publicity it generates can lead to lucrative grants and investments of funds for further research and development.
The public’s willingness to put unreasonable hope and faith in this marketing copy dressed up as news is not unlike our susceptibility to other false or inflated claims from medical practitioners in both scientific and folk medicines, so thank goodness that the placebo effect is real!
The sensationalising of study findings or research results is not limited to medicine though, as many fields of science, and particularly technology, are constantly announcing another ‘killer app’ or ‘disruptive technology’ that is right on the cusp of revolutionising life as we know it (if only they can get an injection of funds or raise some venture capital).
If the reports are to be believed, we are just years, months, weeks or even days away from a completely different lifestyle of more convenience, less hardship, more wealth, and less work. Here’s to the fantastical future that awaits us!