Johnson & Johnson sues researchers who linked asbestos in talc to cancer

Originally published at: Johnson & Johnson sues researchers who linked asbestos in talc to cancer | Boing Boing


It seems as if the chances of J&J winning are slim, and whatever legal flunky came up with this idea forgot about the Streisand effect. Or their bosses are hoping this will scare off future research.

I personally think this is more proof that their legal department doesn’t really care about the company, they only care about the legal department justifying their high salaries.


Or move up to the 21st century with a selfie-stick and a phone. :smile:


Do you honestly think J&J cares about the streisand effect


Wow, impressively topical link. I wish I could give it more than one heart.


I’m sure the videos are embed, but…

After this, this lawsuit seems really dumb.


That would be my guess. They’re trying to create a chilling effect. Even if they know they won’t win, it’ll put the scientists through hell, both emotionally and financially. Maybe future scientists will think twice about publishing something like that in the future.

I honestly wouldn’t mind seeing legal protections for scientists (like tenure, but for civil suits) but then the problem becomes determining who’s a real scientist and who isn’t. That’s muddy water these days. On paper Andrew Wakefield was a legitimate scientist, until he wasn’t and single handedly created the antivax movement that has killed millions. I sure wouldn’t want him to have any legal protection.


Johnson and Johnson should be keeping quiet, it’s not entirely clear if asbestos free talc is not a cancer risk.


Remember the silicone breast implant mess from some years ago? In the end the science was clear–they were only a problem in case of rupture. The “science” that drove them to bankruptcy was pure hokum.

It sounds like J&J is saying this is the same sort of thing.

“This tyre is perfectly safe. It will only explode if you get a puncture.”


As recently as 2019 one of the two companies that was approved to provide silicone breast implants issued a worldwide recall after the FDA linked their products to anaplastic large-cell lymphoma.

So no, it wasn’t all hokum. Many of those products went to market without appropriate safety studies and some number of women paid dearly for it.


It’s only dangerous if you get it wet.


In house counsel doesn’t call the shots in situations like this. Actually, lawyers period don’t make these decisions. Clients make the decision whether or not to sue. Sure, a lawyer might inflate the client’s chances of winning, hoping to get the case, but the lawyers aren’t calling the shots. Also, when big corporations like this sue someone, they engage outside counsel to handle the litigation. That can’t use in house counsel for that. This is 100% on J&J’s C-Suite, not their lawyers.


It seems worth noting that they are also looking to go after the study participants; presumably for having the temerity to be sick against their betters.


Most of the “findings” of talc particles in various tumors are suspect BECAUSE people making tissue slides for pathology often wear non-sterile gloves with talc. Merely dusting your crotch with baby powder isn’t going to get talc and asbestos particles into your ovaries or abdominal cavity or lungs. The whole design of the lungs and the female reproductive tract moves particles OUT, not in. Unless they posit that the particles were motile like sperm.

Yes, SOME asbestos particles are strongly related to mesothelioma BUT factors like length of exposure, quantity of particles inhaled, and long-term cigarette smoking come into play.

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Are you here to test out the validity of excuses for corporate entities, or just see if there are any tiny islands of maybe to cling to, like those slime molds who still try and claim there’s some doubt to the science of climate change?


Back then about 17% of silicone breast implants ruptured.

That’s a lot of “only”.


Awkward Oh No GIF by CBC

That’s… a lot… But hey, it’s only wimmin being vain and wanting bigger tits so who cares! /s

No Way Reaction GIF by Originals


Citation needed. Standard medical gloves are nitrile and unpowdered.


That recall seems to be for both silicone and saline macro-textured implants though…

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