kevin b jones
intro’d to Kevin via his 2015 tedxsaltlakecity – Why curiosity is the key to science and medicine
(school science) was the history of what other people had discovered..what i’m most interested in as a scientist is the how of science…
..science is knowledge in process.
the test failures/exceptions/outliers teach us what we don’t know and lead us to something new..this is how science moves forward..how science learns..
..media..and..even scientists will say that something has been scientifically proven.. but ..
science never proves anything definitively forever
hopefully science remains curious enough to look for and humble enough to recognize when we have found the next outlier the next exception..which..teaches us what we don’t actually know..
all assume at some level that the textbook of medicine is closed..we start to measure quality of health care by how quickly we can access it
.. the textbook of medicine is not closed..medicine is science.. is knowledge in process.
every one of my patients is an outlier, is an exception..there is no surgery i have ever performed for a sarcoma patient that has ever been guided by a randomized controlled clinical trial..what we consider the best kind of population-based evidence in medicine..we don’t even have a box in sarcoma.
what we do have as we take a bath in the uncertainty and unknowns and exceptions and outliers that surround us in sarcoma is easy access to two most important values for any science:
humility and curiosity
it’s through humbly curious communication that we begin to try and learn new things..
sometimes..outliers/exceptions teach us things that matter quite a lot to gen pop..
outlier tree..draws attention into a much greater sense of perhaps what a tree is.. tree that stands out by itself makes those relationships that define a tree.. relationships between trunk/roots/branches..more apparent..even if tree is crooked/unusual ..allows us to make observations that we can then test in the gen pop
every time an individual encounters medicine..even if firmly embedded in gen pop.. neither individual nor physician knows where in pop the individual will land.. therefore..
every encounter with medicine is an experiment..
you will be a subject in an experiment..and outcome will be better/worse ..as long as medicine works well..we’re fine with fast service..but when things don’t work well.. sometimes we want something different..
this is the experiment that we’re doing..this is what you’re going to watch for..this is what i’m going to watch for...she was now a scientist..not only a subject in her experiment..
seek humility and curiosity in your physicians..they cannot tell you what they do not know..but they can tell you when they don’t know if only you’ll ask..so please..join the conversation
forbidden cures et al
In his clinical practice, Dr. Jones provides care to patients of all ages with bone and soft-tissue sarcomas, performing surgery to remove the cancers and reconstruct the limbs or body wall.
While sarcoma is almost never cured without surgery, even the best surgery possible can only cure a portion of patients. Sarcomas are in desperate need of improved chemotherapy options to enable us to fight disease that has spread beyond the reach of the scalpel. To improve treatments, we need to understand better the biology of sarcoma.
Although rare in the population, sarcomas have been at the very center of cancer discovery. The first two major types of genetic drivers of cancer were both initially identified through investigation of sarcomas. Tumor suppressors, the genes that a developing cancer must shut down in order to continue growing out of control, were found in families that had a dangerous propensity to develop bone and soft-tissue sarcomas. Oncogenes, the genes whose activation enables a cancer cell to grow rapidly and ignore stop signals from the outside, were initially identified in a virus that caused sarcomas in chickens.
Sarcomas provide ideal model cancers for the study of oncogenesis, cancer initiation, or transformation because they do not derive from a person’s behaviors or exposures as far as we can tell. One does not generally develop a sarcoma due to a history of smoking, eating too little broccoli, or avoiding exercise. Sarcomas just happen, apparently at random.
We cannot usually answer the “why” questions of sarcomagenesis, but through research we can pursue the “how” questions. In the Jones lab, we aggressively pursue an understanding of how sarcomas develop, seeking in this biology new targets for more effective treatments.