World War II ended with the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Those bombings and the late effects of radiation on the development of cancers in those “survivors” spurred scientific inquiry into the mechanisms underlying human carcinogenesis – the development of cancer. Today’s regulatory science of chemical carcinogens is based upon assumptions and beliefs that are now 75 years old. Our understanding of carcinogenesis has evolved; should our regulatory models shift?
linear non-threshold model
The EPA’s model for assessing the rise of carcinogenesis from chemicals and their dose-response models remains controversial. Is the EPA “following the science” or making assumptions?
Science should always be open to new approaches and ideas. Perhaps this seems self-evident, but although this may sound good in theory, many scientists view new approaches challenging their long-held beliefs with skepticism or downright hostility. Rather than rationally examining ideas that cause discomfort, ideas are off-handedly dismissed, and the people advancing them are attacked. This is the scientific version of “cancel culture.”