May 20, 2018

Mental health

Comedy plus time…

So much of this doc really spoke to me, but two things, in particular, stood out.

Read Time < 1 minute

I watched the documentary Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond this week. Wow, kind of caught me off guard. While I really enjoyed Man on the Moon when it came out ~20 years ago, I had not thought much about it or Kaufman since. So much of this doc really spoke to me, but two things, in particular, stood out. The first was Jim Carrey’s complete devotion to the role and his ability to stay in character(s) (both Kaufman and his alter-ego, Tony Clifton) throughout the entire period of shooting. The second was the honest and intimate admission of unhappiness, even as success piled up, in Carrey’s life.

In the world of lipidology, remarkable stories about a remarkable therapy: PCSK9 inhibitors. From the early clues provided by the hyperfunction of this proprotein convertase (i.e., a family of proteins that activate other proteins) in gain-of-function mutations in the PCSK9 gene linked with hypercholesterolemia — to the flipside — rare people with loss-of-function mutations linked with big reductions in CHD risk, and low cholesterol levels, particularly LDL-C. How low? Around 15 mg/dL! What might be more remarkable is how quickly everything has unfolded. PCSK9 was unheard of prior to the 21st century (2003, in fact). It’s humbling and heroic (and, currently, expensive). To witness these kinds of scientific insights translate into effective treatments in little over a decade almost feels superhuman. But it’s also as if biology is looking at us, winking, as if to say, ‘you have no idea just how little you know about me.’

– Peter 

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