Normally I would be excited at the prospect of a prominent biologist coming to New Zealand, but in this case the person in question is Dr Bruce Lipton (opens new window) - a figure who is well known to skeptics.
Bruce “works” in the field of epigenetics - the branch of biology which looks at the different ways in which factors outside of our DNA can influence gene expression, and consequently our development - how we grow. This is a real branch of science, with some really cool findings (opens new window).
However, Bruce Lipton sadly doesn’t actually do real research into epigenetic effects. Instead, he tells people that each of their cells is a homunculus - a small version of their own body, with a brain, lungs, stomach, etc. Then he argues that if people believe something hard enough, they can influence the brain in each of their cells, and this will cause their cells to behave differently, controlling how genes are turned on and off, etc. Using this, he says that we can cure diseases with the power of our minds. AsOf course this is all totally made up, and has absolutely no evidence underpinning it.
As if that’s not bad enough, Bruce is currently (opens new window) “Visiting Professor of the New Zealand College of Chiropractic”, and has been giving talks about not just his epigenetic nonsense but also COVID silliness. He talked (opens new window) at a popular festival recently, the NZ Spirit festival, claiming that people aren’t really dying of COVID but just from co-morbidities, aka other health issues they have. He told the crowd that vitamins will protect them from dying of COVID, and that governments have been deliberately scaring us. Sadly, looking at the online reaction to his talk, it appears that far too many people are being sucked in by his nonsense.