"Medicine, the only profession that labors incessantly to destroy the reason for its existence." ---James Bryce
Medicine forever suffers for lack of a theory that explains disease and enables physicians to treat its cause rather than evaluate treatments on the basis of symptoms.
Stress theory is the elephant in the living room of medicine because it provides the simplest explanation of physiology, pathology, and stress. It postulates an extracellular “stress mechanism” that converts genetic information into embryological development, whereupon DNA resumes quiescence while the stress mechanism remains active to repair tissues and regulate physiology. Environmental stresses induce stress mechanism hyperactivity that manifests as disease.The recent discovery of this mechanism will elevate medicine from an art based on experiment to a true science guided by theory, and revolutionize medical treatments.
Stress theory exemplifies the pattern of scientific progress described by Thomas Kuhn.(1) Important new theories appear long before evidence becomes available to confirm them. A theory is useless without a testable mechanism that explains how it works, so stress theory inspired an international search for the theoretical stress mechanism that was abandoned after 30 years of fruitless effort. Thereafter, prominent professors pronounced that no singe mechanism could possibly explain the multiple manifestations of stress, disease, and physiology, and stress theory was abandoned and equated with the Unicorn. The fatally flawed "central dogma of molecular biology" (aka "genomics") became the prevailing paradigm of medical research by default, and theoretical progress halted for another 30 years while unrelated research accumulated fresh evidence that belatedly enabled the discovery of the long-sought stress mechanism.(2) The genomics paradigm is now exhausted, and medical research has entered a period of crisis wherein a fresh paradigm is needed to inspire fresh research and restore theoretical advance.