Sources

Sources

“Archive” links to scans in the Truth Tobacco Industry Documents, “Offsite” to scans on other websites, usually the relevant journal websites. The links were checked in May 2017.

Who was Philip Burch?

“the official biography of Sir Richard Doll”
Conrad Keating, Smoking Kills (Oxford, 2009).
Not in archive

The inevitable questions

“I regard compulsive cigarette smoking as a disease”
Criticisms by P. R. J. Burch of the second draft of appendix to chapter 4 by H. Goldstein and K. Horsfield, p. 3.
Archive tid: ajb45d00

Received wisdom

“the great statistician and geneticist R. A. Fisher”
Ronald A. Fisher, Smoking: the cancer controversy : some attempts to assess the evidence (Edinburgh, 1959)
Not in archive Offsite
“a novel scientific methodology”
Austin Bradford Hill, The Environment and Disease: association or causation? Proceedings of the Royal Society of Medicine 58 (1965), 295-300.
Archive tid: jan10j00

Part 1: Medical Physicist

1920-1949

Youth, war and love

A Half-life of Burch

Curriculum vitae Philip R. J. Burch.
Archive tid: bnc4aa00
Luigi Gedda, In Memoriam, Philip RJ Burch – 15th April 1920 to 22nd March 1987.
Archive tid: whg42a99
Obituary, Philip Robert James Burch, Annual General Report, Department of Medical Physics, The University of Leeds and Leeds Western Health Authority (1987), 43-4.
Archive tid: jwz97a99
Professor Philip Burch, The Times 62744 (16 April 1987), 20.
Not in archive
J. E. Burch, M. S. Chesters eds., The Biology of Disease (Leeds, 1985).
Not in archive
“the future Jane Burch”
Obituary: Jane Burch.
Not in archive Offsite

1950-1971

The Roentgen years

A Half-life of Burch

“first whole-body radiation counter”
F. W. Speirs, Beginnings in Radiation Physics, in J. E. Burch and M. S. Chesters (eds.), The Biology of Disease (Leeds, 1985).
“founded a family”
“a change of scene”
Obituary: Jane Burch.
Not in archive Offsite

Burnet, Burwell and Burch

A Half-life of Burch

“successive appointments”
Curriculum vitae Philip R. J. Burch.
Archive tid: bnc4aa00
“what I felt to be a dead end”
Rachel Palmer, The Enthusiasts 8: Professor Philip Burch, Topic of Cancer, GP (25 March 1977), 32
Archive tid: isi55d00
R. G. Burwell, Growth Control and Autoaggressive Disease, in J. E. Burch and M. S. Chesters (eds.), The Biology of Disease (Leeds, 1985).
Not in archive
“pattern of work”
Rachel Palmer, The Enthusiasts 8: Professor Philip Burch, Topic of Cancer, GP (25 March 1977), 32.
Archive tid: isi55d00
P. R. J. Burch, An inquiry concerning growth, disease and ageing (Edinburgh, 1968).
Not in archive

“To understand cancer”

A Half-life of Burch

“an extrinsic carcinogen”
P. R. J. Burch, Genetic carrier frequency for lung cancer, Nature 202/4933 (16 May 1964), 711-12
Archive tid: khd74a99 Offsite (£)
“came to revise his views”
P. R. J. Burch, The Surgeon General’s “epidemiologic criteria for causality”. Reply to Lilienfeld, Journal of Chronic Diseases 37 (1984), 148-156
Archive tid: gms61f00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, New Approach to Cancer, Nature 225 (7 February 1970), 512-15.
Autoaggressive theory applied to cancer.
Archive tid: bhe3aa00 Offsite (£)

Part 2: Emergence of a Heretic

Burch at 50

A Half-life of Burch

“media stunts and angry challenges”
Joel N. Shurkin, Broken genius : the rise and fall of William Shockley, creator of the electronic age (London, 2006).
Not in archive

1972

Inaugural lecture

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Can we have absolutely true scientific laws? University of Leeds Review 15 (1972), 204-231.
An overview of Burch’s thinking on physics and biology.
Not in archive

The Lancet correspondence

A Half-life of Burch

Carl C. Seltzer, A Critical Appraisal of the Royal College of Physicians’ report on smoking and health, The Lancet 299/7744 (29 January 1972), 243-8.
A critique of the RCP 1971 report on heart disease.
Archive tid: ohp60a00 Offsite (£)
Does it help to stop smoking? The Lancet 299/7744 (29 January 1972), 238-9.
An editorial distancing the Lancet from Seltzer’s conclusions.
Archive tid: lpc01a00 Offsite (£)
Richard Doll, Smoking and health, The Lancet 299/7745 (5 February 1972), 322.
Seltzer has already been answered.
Archive tid: ttz61f00 Offsite (£)
C. M. Fletcher, Smoking and health, The Lancet 299/7746 (12 February 1972), 386.
Seltzer only discussed a fraction of the report, and has already been answered.
Archive tid: vtz61f00 Offsite (£)
Carl C. Seltzer, Smoking and health, The Lancet 299/7750 (11 March 1972), 586-8.
New data and calculations, Seltzer’s conclusions reaffirmed.
Archive tid: suw1aa00 Offsite (£)
Theodor D. Sterling, Report on smoking and health, The Lancet 299/7757 (29 April 1972), 960-1.
An apparent contradiction in Doll’s claims. Doctors not a representative sample.
Archive tid: xit13f00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and health, The Lancet 299/7763 (10 June 1972), 1283.
Fisher’s constitutional hypothesis. More studies of twins are needed.
Archive tid: wug21a00 Offsite (£)
C. M. Fletcher, Smoking and health, The Lancet 300/7766 (1 July 1972), 42.
Reply to Burch. Fisher has already been answered. Twins are few and smoking is a practical issue.
Archive tid: zit13f00 Offsite (£)
Richard Doll, Smoking and health, The Lancet 300/7768 (15 July 1972), 131-2.
Reply to Sterling. Doll has been quoted out of context.
Archive tid: tpc01a00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and health, The Lancet 300/7768 (15 July 1972), 132-3.
Reply to Fletcher. Importance of refutation. The Four Tides diagram introduced.
Archive tid: tpc01a00 Offsite (£)
Helmut R. R. Wakeham, Smoking and health, The Lancet 300/7771, (5 August 1972), 275-6.
From the Philip Morris Research Center. Danish and American twin studies.
Archive tid: bwi13f00 Offsite (£)
W. H. Cherry and W. F. Forbes, Smoking and health, The Lancet 300/7781 (14 October 1972), 824-5.
Friberg’s study of twins criticised.
Archive tid: tuq34e00 Offsite (£)
Zdenek Hrubec and Eldon S. Sutton, Smoking and health, The Lancet 300/7783 (28 October 1972), 932.
More about the US twins study.
Archive tid: icr71d00 Offsite (£)
Lars Friberg, Smoking and health, The Lancet 300/7784 (4 November 1972), 973.
To Cherry and Forbes. Friberg had previously supplied allegedly missing data to Forbes privately.
Archive tid: xhk67a00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and health, The Lancet 300/7785 (11 November 1972), 1029.
To Cherry and Forbes. Burch’s reasoning about twins expounded.
Archive tid: tit13f00 Offsite (£)
T. H. Hughes-Davies, Smoking and health, The Lancet 300/7788 (2 December 1972), 1197.
A brief note on twins.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
Richard J. Hickey, Evelyn B. Horner and Richard C. Clelland, Smoking, pollution and health, The Lancet 300/7791 (23 December 1972), 1362-3.
Role of pollution in lung cancer.
Archive tid: vbq92f00 Offsite (£)
Christopher Fewtrell, Smoking, pollution and health, The Lancet 300/7791 (23 December 1972), 1363.
A brief note on twins.
Archive tid: vbq92f00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and health, The Lancet 300/7792 (30 December 1972), 1423-4.
A ‘fuller version of the arguments so far’ under nine headings.
Archive tid: ted3aa00 Offsite (£)

The Tobacco Research Council and Burch

A Half-life of Burch

G.F.T. [G. F. Todd], Discussion with Professor P. R. J. Burch, Leeds General Infirmary, 30 June 1972.
Todd’s account of the meeting.
Archive tid: brm82a99
F.J.C.R. [F. J. C. Roe], Report on discussions with Professor P. R. J. Burch at Leeds on 30.6.72
Roe’s account of the meeting.
Archive tid: shd74a99
P. R. J. Burch, Lung cancer and cigarette smoking, secular trends.
Draft of a paper to be offered to Nature.
Archive tid: znz88b00
P. R. J. Burch, The analysis of cancer statistics with special reference to cigarette smoking and lung cancer. Non-mathematical synopsis.
A summary of Burch’s views written for Todd and Roe.
Archive tid: mlg42a99

Report by Sir Charles Ellis

A Half-life of Burch

Charles Ellis to Geoffrey Todd, 13 July 1972
Burch is difficult to understand but not a crank.
Archive tid: phd74a99

The Lancet correspondence and new friendships

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Lars Friberg, 17 October 1972
Not in archive
Lars Friberg to Philip Burch, 25 October 1972
Thanks for notification about the Lancet correspondence.
Archive tid: nwz61f00
Philip Burch to Lars Friberg, 17 November 1972
Not in archive
Lars Friberg to Philip Burch, 6 December 1972
Comments on Burch’s draft paper.
Archive tid: yso91a00
Philip Burch to Lars Friberg, 13 December 1972
Some of Friberg’s queries answered.
Archive tid: xso91a00
Richard Hickey to Philip Burch, 18 August 1972
Burch’s letters to the Lancet accord with Hickey’s views.
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Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 4 September 1972
A request for some of Hickey’s papers.
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Richard Hickey to Philip Burch, 7 September 1972
The papers have been forwarded.
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Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 14 September 1972
About Burch’s general approach to disease.
Archive tid: axj07c00
Richard Hickey to Philip Burch, 28 June 1973
Burch’s reply to Peto and Mathews was devastating.
Archive tid: dqw38e00
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 2 July 1973
Weakness of ‘establishment’ views on the matter.
Archive tid: fqw38e00
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 7 October 1973
About the birthweight correspondence.
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Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 16 November 1973
More about smoking in pregnancy.
Archive tid: mak07c00
Carl Seltzer to Philip Burch, 17 July 1972
Thanks for the support in the Lancet correspondence.
Archive tid: atl68e00
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 20 July 1972
Further developments: Seltzer should keep up the good work.
Archive tid: btl68e00
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 17 November 1972
A draft of the Nature paper enclosed.
Archive tid: znz88b00
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 13 December 1972
Thanks for Seltzer’s comments and copy of a relevant paper.
Archive tid: xkb45d00

1973

Heart disease in the New England Journal of Medicine

A Half-life of Burch

Carl C. Seltzer, Smoking and coronary heart disease, New England Journal of Medicine 288/22 (31 May 1973), 1186.
Lung cancer rates in British doctors have fallen while coronary heart disease rose. Smoking cannot be the cause of both.
Archive tid: enk67a00 Offsite ($)
N. J. Wald, S. V. Howard and N. J. Smith, Smoking and coronary heart disease (Cont.), New England Journal of Medicine 289/11 (13 September, 1973), 590.
Doctors had less CHD than the general population and smoking is not the only cause.
Not in archive Offsite ($)
George F. Grannis, Smoking and coronary heart disease (Cont.), New England Journal of Medicine 289/11 (13 September, 1973), 591.
A criticism of Seltzer’s calculations.
Not in archive Offsite ($)
Carl C. Seltzer, More on smoking and heart disease, New England Journal of Medicine 289/22 (29 November, 1973), 1200-1.
Wald cannot say what else caused the rise in CHD. Grannis’s criticism answered.
Archive tid: ofr56b00 Offsite ($)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and coronary heart disease (Cont.), New England Journal of Medicine 290/6 (7 February, 1974), 345.
Seltzer is right. Inadequacy of Wald and Grannis’s analysis.
Archive tid: umc4aa00 Offsite ($)

The Statistical Subcommittee

A Half-life of Burch

45th Meeting of the Statistical Sub-committtee to be held at 10.45 a.m. on Tuesday, 18th July, 1972, at Glen House, Stag Place, London, S.W.1. Notes on the Agenda.
Archive tid: wrw72a99
Minutes of the 45th Meeting of the Statistical Sub-committtee of T.R.C. held at 10.45 a.m. on Tuesday, 18th July, 1972, at Glen House, Stag Place, London, S.W.1.
Material relating to Burch has been circulated. Peter Lee is to study his book An Inquiry into Growth, Disease and Ageing.
Archive tid: xrw72a99

46th Meeting of the Statistical Sub-committtee to be held at 10.45 a.m. on Wednesday, 11th October, 1972, at Glen House, Stag Place, London, S.W.1. Notes on the Agenda.
Archive tid: trw72a99
Minutes of the 46th Meeting of the Statistical Sub-committtee held at 10.45 a.m. on Wednesday, 11th October, 1972, at Glen House, Stag Place, London, S.W.1.
Consideration of Burch’s Analysis of Cancer Statistics with Special Reference to Cigarette Smoking is postponed to the next meeting.
Archive tid: urw72a99
47th Meeting of the Statistical Sub-committtee to be held at 10.45 a.m. on Tuesday, 16th January, 1973, at Glen House, Stag Place, London, S.W.1. Notes on the Agenda.
Archive tid: prw72a99
Minutes of the 47th Meeting of the Statistical Sub-committtee held at 10.45 a.m. on Tuesday, 16th January, 1973, at Glen House, Stag Place, London, S.W.1.
Lee’s analysis of An Inquiry into Growth, Disease and Ageing and The Analysis of Cancer Statistics is to be consolidated and circulated.
Archive tid: qrw72a99
48th Meeting of the Statistical Sub-committtee to be held at 10.45 a.m. on Tuesday, 13th March, 1973, at Glen House, Stag Place, London, S.W.1. Notes on the Agenda.
Archive tid: mrw72a99
Minutes of the 48th Meeting of the Statistical Sub-committtee held at 10.45 a.m. on Tuesday, 13th March, 1973, at Glen House, Stag Place, London, S.W.1.
Consideration of Burch’s papers is to be put into abeyance.
Archive tid: nrw72a99
Philip Burch to Geoffrey Todd, 9 March 1973
What progress has the committee made? A request for data on Native Americans.
Archive tid: mrr82a99

The Lancet correspondence turns to lung cancer

A Half-life of Burch

J. N. Mehrishi, Smoking, cancer and coronary heart disease, The Lancet 301/7804 (24 March 1973), 666-7.
Proposed study group to investigate smoking and carcinogenesis.
Archive tid: isw2aa00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and cancer, The Lancet 301/7809 (28 April 1973), 939-40.
To Mehrishi. Cigarette smoke not carcinogenic. The Burch curve introduced.
Archive tid: pjk67a00 Offsite (£)
Richard Peto and John Mathews, Smoking and cancer, The Lancet, 301 7812 (19 May 1973), 1126.
To Burch. Vertical analysis and cohort effects prove the causal theory.
Archive tid: ksw2aa00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and cancer, The Lancet, 301 7815 (9 June 1973), 1315-6.
To Peto. Death rates in old age and the unreliablity of diagnosis.
Archive tid: yhk67a00 Offsite (£)
Alwyn Smith, Smoking and cancer, The Lancet, 301 7817 (23 June 1973), 1448.
Lung cancer rates are a simple function of age.
Archive tid: eqw38e00 Offsite (£)
T. J. Cole, Smoking and cancer, The Lancet, 302 7819 (7 July 1973), 49.
An alleged contradiction in Burch’s claims.
Archive tid: osw2aa00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and cancer, The Lancet, 302 7820 (14 July 1973), p.102-3.
To Smith: sex ratios argue against his claims. To Cole: the ‘contradiction’ explained.
Archive tid: gpu04f00 Offsite (£)
J. T. Manning, Smoking and lung cancer, The Lancet, 304/7881 (11 September 1974), 666-667.
Stress as a possible genetic factor in lung cancer
Archive tid: csx2aa00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and lung cancer, The Lancet, 306/7886 (19 October 1974), 950.
Manning’s genetic hypothesis does not need to invoke stress.
Archive tid: dsx2aa00 Offsite (£)
Philip Burch to Peter Lee, 16 May 1973
Did Lee see Burch’s letter in the Lancet?
Archive tid: qns82a99
Peter Lee to Philip Burch, 31 May 1973
Vertical analysis and cohort analysis. Possible explanations of the modal peak in Burch’s graphs.
Archive tid: rns82a99
Philip Burch to Peter Lee, 6 June 1973
Lee has misunderstood the parameter S. The graphs impossible to reconcile with Doll’s hypothesised power law.
Archive tid: ocy82a99
Peter Lee to Philip Burch, 13 June 1973
Burch ought to correct for removal from the population. The modal peak should soon disappear. The data is compatible with Lee’s own hypotheses.
Archive tid: qcy82a99
Philip Burch to Peter Lee, 26 June 1973
Evidence for widespread misdiagnosis of lung cancer. A power law cannot explain Burch’s data.
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Peter Lee to Philip Burch, 16 July 1973
Misdiagnosis. Lee’s own mathematical approach explained.
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Richard Peto to Peter Lee, 4 July 1973
Comments on Burch in the Lancet
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“pocket chess set”
Richard Peto to Peter Lee, 4 September 1974
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Sir Richard Doll in search of funding

A Half-life of Burch

Richard Doll to Geoffrey Todd, 16 July 1973
Can the Tobacco Research Council endow a readership for Richard Peto?
Archive tid: snv82a99

Rejection by Nature

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Geoffrey Todd, 9 March 1973
Have the TRC formed an opinion yet? Nature has turned Burch’s paper down.
Archive tid: mrr82a99

Yerushalmy, Goldstein and smoking in pregnancy

A Half-life of Burch

Fisher, Neyman, Berkson and Brownlee
Ronald A. Fisher, Smoking, the cancer controversy : some attempts to assess the evidence (Edinburgh, 1959).
Not in archive Offsite
Jerzy Neyman, Statistics – servant of all science, Science 122/3166 (2 September 1955), 401-16.
Archive tid: jrw13a00 Offsite ($)
Joseph Berkson, Smoking and cancer of the lung, Proceedings of the Staff Meetings of the Mayo Clinic 35 (1960), 367-85.
Archive tid: feq86a00
K. A. Brownlee, A review of “Smoking and Health”, Journal of the American Statistical Association 60/311 (September 1965), 722-739.
Not in archive Offsite ($)
J. Yerushalmy, Mother’s cigarette smoking and survival of infant, American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 88/4 (15 February 1964), 505-518.
Mothers who smoke have more underweight babies, possibly for genetic reasons. Various causal explanations refuted.
Archive tid: wji43f00 Offsite ($)
J. Yerushalmy, The Relationship of Parents’ Cigarette Smoking to Outcome of Pregnancy – Implications as to the Problem of Inferring Causation from Observed Associations, American Journal of Epidemiology 93/6 (June 1971), 443-56.
More causal explanations refuted, including the ‘displacement hypothesis’.
Archive tid: ifb20a00 Offsite ($)
J. Yerushalmy, Infants with low birth weight born before their mothers started smoking, American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 112/2 (15 January 1972), 277-84.
More causal explanations refuted. Evidence for a genetic explanation.
Archive tid: dql41a00 Offsite ($)
H. Goldstein, Cigarette smoking and low birthweight babies, American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 114/4 (15 October 1972), 570-1.
An apparent error in one of Yerushalmy’s calculations.
Not in archive Offsite (free)
J. Yerushalmy, Reply to Mr Goldstein, American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 114/4 (15 October 1972), 571-3.
The calculation spelt out at length: it is not in error.
Not in archive Offsite (free)
H. Goldstein, Birthweight and the Displacement Hypothesis, An Analysis of Method, American Journal of Epidemiology 95/1 (January 1972), 1.
Yerushalmy wrong to reject the displacement hypothesis.
Archive tid: idv62f00 Offsite (free)
J. Yerushalmy, The Author Replies, American Journal of Epidemiology 95/1 (January 1972) 2.
Goldstein’s argument refuted.
Archive tid: idv62f00 Offsite (free)
N. R. Butler, H. Goldstein and E. M. Ross, Cigarette Smoking in Pregnancy: its Influence on Birth Weight and Perinatal Mortality, British Medical Journal 2/5906 (15 April 1972), 127-30.
A case control study confirms the displacement hypothesis.
Archive tid: zeu94f00 Offsite (free)
Smoking hazard to the fetus, British Medical Journal 2/5850 (17 February 1973), 369.
Editorial. There is now no reasonable doubt that smoking in pregnancy is harmful.
Archive tid: jev62f00 Offsite (free)
R. J. Hickey, E. B. Harner and R. C. Clelland, Smoking hazards to the fetus, British Medical Journal 3/5878 (1 September 1973), 501.
Correction Smoking hazards to the fetus, British Medical Journal 3/5880 (8 September 1973) 552
The editorial ignores the work of Yerushalmy. Correlation is not causation. Importance of refutation in science.
Archive tid: nie21a00 Offsite (free)
Offsite (free)
Euan M. Ross, N. R. Butler and H. Goldstein, Smoking hazards to the fetus, British Medical Journal 4/5883 (6 October 1973), 51.
The question is still unsettled. Yerushalmy has been refuted by Goldstein.
Archive tid: edo78e00 Offsite (free)
Smoking, pregnancy and publicity, Nature 245/5420 (14 September 1973), 61.
Editorial. Goldstein’s remarks in Concern are not substantiated by his BMJ paper.
Archive tid: eld84e00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking, pregnancy and publicity, Nature 245/5423 (5 October 1973), 277.
The editorial welcome. Yerushalmy not refuted.
Archive tid: cfv62f00 Offsite (£)
Harvey Goldstein, Smoking, pregnancy and publicity, Nature 245/5423 (5 October 1973), 277.
Goldstein did not claim to prove causation. The evidence is strong enough to act on.
Archive tid: cfv62f00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and pregnancy, Nature 246/5429 (16 November, 1973), 177.
Goldstein repeated his claims after two refutations by Yerushalmy. Goldstein’s dual standards.
Archive tid: hgm31a99 Offsite (£)
Richard J. Hickey, David E. Boyce, Richard C. Clelland and Evelyn B. Harner, Smoking and pregnancy, Nature 246/5429 (16 November, 1973), 177-8.
Yerushalmy refuted Goldstein, whose appeal to ethics is subjective and whose reasoning ignores self-selection.
Archive tid: hgm31a99 Offsite (£)
Bea J. van den Berg, Smoking and pregnancy, Nature 246/5432 (21/28 December 1973), 540.
Death of Yerushalmy.
Archive tid: jih45a00 Offsite (£)
Harvey Goldstein, Smoking, pregnancy and publicity, Nature 246/5432 (21/28 December 1973), 540.
Other evidence against Yerushalmy. Smoking an ethical, not a scientific, issue.
Archive tid: jih45a00 Offsite (£)
N. R. Butler and H. Goldstein, Smoking in Pregnancy and Subsequent Child Development, British Medical Journal 4/5892 (8 December 1973), 573-5.
A new study of the effects of parental smoking on children. The harmfulness of smoking in pregnancy now accepted: see the BMJ editorial.
Archive tid: hfv62f00 Offsite (free)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking hazard to the fetus, British Medical Journal 1/5896 (5 January 1974), 40.
The BMJ editorial not evidence. Goldstein again ignores Yerushalmy and forgets his concession in the Nature correspondence.
Archive tid: kfv62f00 Offsite (free)
“causationists such as Todd”
G. F. Todd, Comments on Chapters 1-6 and 8-9 of the Report on Smoking and Health of the Royal College of Physicians, 4
Archive tid: xap72a99

Yerushalmy and self-selection

A Half-life of Burch

Offsite (free)

J. Yerushalmy, On inferring causality from observed associations, in F. J. Ingelfinger, A. S. Reiman and M. Finland (eds.) Controversy in internal medicine (Philadelphia, 1966) 659-668.
Problems in the application of statistics to epidemiology, including self-selection, illustrated from studies such as Seltzer on cigarette smoking and physique.
Archive tid: kni92f00
J. Yerushalmy, Self-selection—a major problem in observational studies, in Proceedings of the Sixth Berkeley Symposium on Mathematical Statistics and Probability, Volume 4: Biology and Health (Berkeley, 1972) 329–342.
The problem of self-selection illustrated from Ancel Keys’s Six Countries study of coronary heart disease and Yerushalmy’s work on low birthweight babies.
Archive tid: kkg72f00 <a href="http://projecteuclid.org/euclid.bsmsp/1200514474"

Health warnings

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Government health warning on cigarette packages, The Lancet 302/7830 (22 September 1973), 682.
It has not been proved that “Cigarettes are our biggest killers”.
Archive tid: row2aa00 Offsite (£)

At the Eugenics Society

Toward perfect man

A Half-life of Burch

Roger Lewin, Towards perfect man, New Scientist 50/866 (4 October, 1973), 38-9.
A meeting of the Eugenics Society which was addressed by Philip Burch.
Archive tid: rjt2aa00
Offsite (free)
P. R. J. Burch, What limits the lifespan? in B. Benjamin, P. R. Cox and J. Peel (eds.) Population and the New Biology (London and New York, 1974), 31-56.
The main barrier to longer lifespans is now degenerative and malignant disease, and victory is not assured.
Archive tid: rqk30g00
“every known member”
Offsite (free)
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 11 October 1973
Lewin’s report enclosed.
Archive tid: qjt2aa00

1974

Burch and Doll: the New Scientist exchange

A Half-life of Burch

Bernard Dixon, Propaganda and Integrity, New Scientist 61/458-463 (21 February 1974), 50.
Editorial. Competing claims of health education and scientific debate. Goldstein’s double standards.
Archive tid: yau62f00 Offsite (free)
Philip Burch, Does Smoking cause lung cancer? New Scientist 61/886 (21 February 1974), 458-63.
Burch’s case expounded for a general audience.
Archive tid: yze32a99 Offsite (free)
Richard Doll, Smoking, lung cancer and Occam’s razor, New Scientist 61/886 (21 February 1974), 463-7.
Five points in Burch’s argument disputed and orthodoxy restated.
Archive tid: yml94f00 Offsite (free)
Philip Burch, Smoking and lung cancer: Burch’s reply, New Scientist 61/887 (28 February 1974), 559-560.
The five points considered and Doll’s arguments rejected.
Archive tid: qau88e00 Offsite (free)

Correspondence in New Scientist

A Half-life of Burch

A. C. L. Mackie, Smoking and lung cancer, New Scientist 61/888 (7 March, 1974), 643.
The advice about smoking in pregnancy was not fanaticism.
Archive tid: krf2aa00 Offsite (free)
C. M. Fletcher and K. Ball, Smoking and lung cancer, New Scientist 61/888 (7 March, 1974), 643.
Dixon irresponsible to publish Burch.
Archive tid: krf2aa00 Offsite (free)
Editor [Bernard Dixon], Smoking and lung cancer, New Scientist 61/888 (7 March, 1974), 643.
To ignore dissent is unscientific.
Archive tid: krf2aa00 Offsite (free)
C. Auerbach, Smoking and cancer, New Scientist 61/889 (14 March, 1974), 711.
Does Burch deny the correlation between smoking and cancer?
Archive tid: lxv61f00 Offsite (free)
J. W. Dale, J. L. Roberts, H. Goldstein and N. R. Butler, Smoking and cancer, New Scientist (14 March, 1974), 711.
Proposed study of anti-smoking publicity.
Archive tid: lxv61f00 Offsite (free)
J. R. James, Burch on smoking, New Scientist 61/890 (21 March, 1974), 774-5.
Burch makes unwarranted assumptions.
Archive tid: mxv61f00 Offsite (free)
Stanley Alderson, Burch on smoking, New Scientist 61/890 (21 March, 1974), 775.
The increase in lung cancer is largely an artefact, and stress may be the cause.
Archive tid: mxv61f00 Offsite (free)
Philip Burch, Smoking and cancer, New Scientist 61/891 (28 March, 1974), 837.
To Auerbach. Of course Burch accepts the correlation. Fisher’s hypothesis restated.
Archive tid: mow2aa00 Offsite (free)
Philip Burch, Smoking and cancer, New Scientist 62/892 (4 April, 1974), 41.
To James. Burch does not make the supposed assumptions. The stress hypothesis difficult to test.
Archive tid: oow2aa00 Offsite (free)
C. Auerbach, Smoking and cancer, New Scientist 62/893 (11 April, 1974), 90.
Fisher’s hypothesis is purely theoretical and untestable.
Archive tid: frx2aa00 Offsite (free)
Philip Burch, Smoking and cancer, New Scientist 62/895 (25 April, 1974), 195.
Auerbach needs to read Fisher. The scientific method restated.
Archive tid: kow2aa00 Offsite (free)
Carl C. Seltzer, Smoking and cancer, New Scientist 62/895 (25 April, 1974), 195-6.
A calculation by Seltzer in Medical Counterpoint confirms Burch’s claim about lung cancer rates and refutes Doll’s claim in his second article.
Offsite (free)
C. Auerbach, Smoking and lung cancer, New Scientist 62/897 (9 May, 1974), 346.
How offensive! Three questions.
Archive tid: nrx2aa00 Offsite (free)
Philip Burch, Smoking and cancer, New Scientist 62/899 (23 May, 1974), 503-4.
No offence was intended. 1. No. 2. No. 3. Yes.
Archive tid: vrx2aa00 Offsite (free)
Carl C. Seltzer, Cigarette smoking and longevity in the elderly, Medical Counterpoint (February 1974), 29-33.
Doll and Pike’s data on British doctors examined for trends in men aged over 64.
Archive tid: vud33e00

Correspondence with Congressman Richardson Preyer

A Half-life of Burch

Richardson Preyer to Philip Burch, 10 April 1974
Support for Burch’s views and a proposal to establish a commission on smoking and health.
Archive tid: czq94e00
Philip Burch to Richardson Preyer, 19 April 1974
Weakness of established views on the issue, difficulty of finding suitable scientists to serve on the commission.
Archive tid: aph08e00
Philip Burch to Richardson Preyer, 6 February 1975
A proposal to meet during Burch’s forthcoming visit to the USA.
Archive tid: ygf19a00

At the Society of Occupational Medicine

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer 29 July 1974
An account of the meeting, together with other news and views.
Archive tid: umt10a00
P. R. J. Burch, Problems in the interpretation of cancer statistics with special reference to lung cancer, Journal of the Society of Occupational Medicine 25 (1975), 2-10.
Burch’s first presentation of his ideas in a scientific journal.
Archive tid: wgz88b00 Offsite (£)

Publication in Tabak-Journal

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and disease, problems of interpretation, Tabak-Journal, 1975.
A short summary of evidence disconfirming the causal hypothesis.
Archive tid: pow64e00

Framingham and self-selection

A Half-life of Burch

Tavia Gordon, William B. Kannel and Daniel McGee, Death and coronary attacks in men after giving up cigarette smoking, The Lancet 304/7893 (7 December 1974), 1345-8.
The Framingham study shows that men who give up cigarette smoking halve their risk of CHD.
Archive tid: dss10a00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Death and coronary attacks after giving up smoking, The Lancet 304/7896 (28 December 1974), 1564.
Gordon ignores the problem of self-selection. The Framingham study is not randomised.
Archive tid: smc4aa00 Offsite (£)

1975

L. H. Opie, Sudden death and sport, The Lancet 305/7901 (1 February 1975), 263-6.
A paper identifying some risk factors for sudden death in sportsmen.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
T. Khosla, Sudden death and sport, The Lancet 305/7903 (15 February 1975), 395.
Those over 30 should not be thought too old for sport.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
Malcolm Carruthers, Peter Nixon and Alistair Murray, Safe sport, The Lancet 305/7904 (22 February 1975), 447.
A study shows that exercise seems to lower the risk of heart disease.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
L. H. Opie, Sudden death and sport, The Lancet 305/7908 (22 March 1975), 678.
Opie did not mean to deter the public from taking exercise, though it may not be appropriate to those who have established heart disease.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
Risteard Mulcahy and Noel Hickey, Risk factors after coronary thrombosis, The Lancet 305/7920 (14 June 1975), 1337.
Opie questions the benefits of risk factor intervention but the authors have demonstrated them in previous work.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Risk factors after coronary thrombosis, The Lancet 306/7923 (5 July 1975), 30.
The authors ignore self-selection and assume that ‘risk factors’ are causes.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
“the zeal of the convert”
Sandy Rovner, Health talk: prevention, Washington Post 14 November 1980, D5 1
Archive tid: oto74b00 Offsite ($)

Lee reports

A Half-life of Burch

P.N.L. [P. N.Lee], A critical review of the theory of Professor P. R. J. Burch
Evidence for the causal and consitutional hypotheses summarised and weighed up.
Archive tid: iho59d00
P. N. Lee, Notes on a meeting with Dr. H. MacDonald held in Leeds on 31 December, 1974
A glimpse of Burch in conversation.
Archive tid: yxy72a99

Burch in Michigan

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Richardson Preyer, 16 February 1975
A forthcoming visit to the USA. Can Preyer meet Burch?
Archive tid: ygf19a00

New smoking products

A Half-life of Burch

Evaluation of new smoking products, The Lancet 305/7907 (15 March 1975), 618-19.
Editorial. Animal testing seems to show that the New Smoking Mixture is less dangerous than cigarettes.
Archive tid: fsx2aa00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Evaluation of new smoking products, The Lancet,305/7910 (5 April 1975), 797.
The dangers of cigarettes have still not been proved.
Archive tid: gsx2aa00 Offsite (£)
W. J. Harrison, New smoking products, The Lancet 305/7912 (19 April 1975), 917.
Burch’s claims disputed.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, New smoking products, The Lancet 305/7914 (3 May 1975), 1040.
Smoking increases morbidity from bronchitis but not necessarily mortality.
Archive tid: jsx2aa00 Offsite (£)
Alan Calder, NSM, New smoking materials.
Alan Calder’s blog: some inside information on the New Smoking Materials project.
Not in archive. Offsite

Another rejection by Nature

A Half-life of Burch

Peter Newmark to Philip Burch, 29 September 1975
Burch’s paper has been rejected by expert reviewers.
Archive tid: nvm78e00
Philip Burch to Peter Newmark, 3 October 1975
A request for the reviewers’ comments.
Archive tid: dvm78e00
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 3 October 1975
The Times correspondence, the Nature rejection and an approach from the RCP.
Archive tid: ivm78e00

Seltzer at Leeds

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 20 October 1975
Arrangements for Seltzer’s visit and lecture.
Archive tid: kdb45d00
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 14 November 1975
Congratulations on a successful lecture.
Archive tid: zrs10a00
Philip Burch to Frederick Stare, 2 December 1975
A glowing report on Seltzer and his lecture.
Archive tid: awm78e00

The Need to Know

A Half-life of Burch

Smoking and health: The need to know
Transcript of interviews for a tobacco industry film including one with Burch.
Archive tid: akh30c00
Ari-Gem Productions,Tobacco Institute, The Answers We Seek
A version of the film, with a brief clip of Burch.
Archive tid: aar91f00 

Part 3: In the spotlight

Publicity for The Biology of Cancer

Headlines

A Half-life of Burch

Gordon Broome, ‘Smoking may not kill’ storm, The Sun 19 August 1975
Burch’s sensational claims.
Archive tid: ftz61f00
Tom Brown, Smoking: does anyone know the truth, The Daily Express, 20 August 1975
Burch’s sensational claims.
Archive tid: xtf21a00
Ronald Bedford, Cancer ‘jury’ to decide, The Daily Mirror, 21 August 1975
Burch’s sensational claims to be referred to the Hunter Committee.
Archive tid: cyq34e00
World Cable Service, Smoking link to cancer queried, The Daily Telegraph 20 August 1975
Burch’s claims.
Archive tid: cvb85e00

Controversy in The Times

Exchange with William Rees-Mogg

A Half-life of Burch

Neville Hodgkinson, Evidence that cigarettes cause cancer inadequate, professor claims, The Times, 59477 (18 August 1975), 2.
A journalistic account of Burch’s views.
Archive tid: vtf21a00
M. G. P. Stoker, Cigarette smoking and lung cancer, The Times 59480 (21 August 1975), 13.
Cigarette smoke is mutagenic and therefore causes cancer.
Archive tid: ged3aa00
C. M. Fletcher and Keith Ball, Cigarette smoking and lung cancer, The Times 59480 (21 August 1975), 13.
Burch ignores the great weight of positive evidence against cigarettes.
Archive tid: ged3aa00
P. R. J. Burch, Cigarette smoking and lung cancer, The Times 59485 (27 August 1975), 11.
Reasons to believe that cigarette smoke is not mutagenic. Burch has examined a huge body of evidence and found nothing that refutes Fisher.
Archive tid: gfn70a99
Herbert Dingle, Cigarette smoking and lung cancer, The Times 59485 (27 August 1975), 11.
The fact that Burch is in a minority does not make him wrong.
Archive tid: gfn70a99
Richard Doll and Richard Peto, Cigarette smoking and lung cancer, The Times 59489 (1 September 1975), 11.
Five reasons to reject Burch’s views.
Archive tid: gjt2aa00
J. H. Edwards, Cigarette smoking and lung cancer, The Times 59505 (19 September 1975), 15.
The evidence against smoking is a kind of net, not a chain with a weakest link.
Archive tid: kvm78e00
J. R. James, Cigarette smoking and lung cancer, The Times 59505 (19 September 1975), 15.
The Burch-Fisher theory is unfalsifiable and therefore unscientific.
Archive tid: kvm78e00
P. R. J. Burch, Cigarette smoking and lung cancer, The Times 59520 (7 October 1975), 13.
The net theory of evidence is nonsense. Fisher’s theory is falsifiable by various tests.
Archive tid: lvm78e00
Donald Gould, Smoke Battle, New Scientist 67/965 (4 September 1975), 514.
Burch’s book has appeared: he is not a crank but caution should prevail.
Archive tid: dgz88b00 Offsite (free)
Philip Burch to William Rees-Mogg, 29 September 1975
A request for a further reply to his critics.
Archive tid: avm78e00
Philip Burch to Conrad Seltzer, 3 October 1975
No reply from Rees-Mogg. An approach from the RCP.
Archive tid: ivm78e00
Neville Hodgkinson to Philip Burch, 8 October 1975
Congratulations on the letter being published.
Archive tid: pum78e00
Philip Burch to Conrad Seltzer, 9 October 1975
The Times has relented.
Archive tid: jdb45d00
William Rees-Mogg to Philip Burch, 9 October 1975
Burch has been given the last word on this occasion.
Archive tid: zum78e00
Philip Burch to Conrad Seltzer, 14 October 1975
Burch did Rees-Mogg an injustice. Hodgkinson and Mehrishi.
Archive tid: yum78e00
Neville Hodgkinson, No proof smoking causes heart disease, expert says, The Times 59554 (17 November 1975), 4.
Not in archive
Neville Hodgkinson, Professor challenges Government warnings against lung cancer, The Times 59692 (30 April 1976), 6.
Not in archive
Neville Hodgkinson, Warning to smokers not to expect safe cigarettes, The Times 59832 (12 October 1976), 17.
Not in archive

Correspondence with the Minister of State for Health

A Half-life of Burch

Neville Hodgkinson, Scientists to study new smoking theory, The Times 59482 (23 August 1975) 2
Not in archive
First Report of the Independent Scientific Committee on Smoking and Health. Chairman: Dr R.B. Hunter, M.D., LL.D., F.R.C.P., F.R.S.Ed.
A report on the testing of tobacco substitutes.
Archive tid: yaw57a00
Philip Burch to David Owen 1 September 1975
Burch is sceptical about committees. Burch’s views and possible tests of them.
Archive tid: rum78e00
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and cancer, criticisms by Professor P. R. J. Burch of the Hunter Committee report to the Minister of State (Health)
Rebuttal of a report rejecting Burch’s views.
Archive tid: ljb45d00
Philip Burch to David Owen 2 February 1976
Burch has received a copy of the Hunter Committee’s statement about him and encloses a rebuttal.
Archive tid: kjb45d00

Approaches from the Royal College of Physicians

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 3 October 1975
Proposed discussions with the Royal College of Physicians
Archive tid: ivm78e00
Philip Burch to Sir Cyril Clarke, 13 November 1975
Thanks for the invitation: discussion should follow a written exchange.
Archive tid: ydd3aa00
Cyril Clarke to Philip Burch, 18 November 1975
A proposal is in the works.
Archive tid: ikb45d00
Cyril Clarke to Philip Burch, 25 November 1975
A proposal to exchange drafts of the forthcoming RCP report and Burch’s book.
Archive tid: dkb45d00
Philip Burch to Cyril Clarke, 28 November 1975
The exchange accepted.
Archive tid: ekb45d00
H. Goldstein and K. Horsfield, Appendix to chapter 4 The statistical controversy on the relation between smoking and lung cancer
Draft of a critique of Burch proposed for inclusion in the report.
Archive tid: gbp72a99
P. R. J. Burch, Criticisms by P. R. J. Burch of the second draft of appendix to chapter 4 by H. Goldstein and K. Horsfield
Burch’s reply to the critique.
Archive tid: ajb45d00
Cyril Clarke to Philip Burch, 31 December 1975
The reply has been forwarded to Goldstein and Horsfield.
Archive tid: djb45d00

Christmas at Cambridge

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 15 January 1976
A family Christmas.
Archive tid: cjb45d0

1976

Clarke passes the buck

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 15 January 1976
A paper by Seltzer, Christmas, Clarke’s letter and Burch’s book.
Archive tid: cjb45d00
Charles Fletcher to Philip Burch, 14 January 1976
Invitation to a seminar with Richard Peto at Hammersmith in May. A reply from Goldstein and Horsfield promised.
Archive tid: fjb45d00
Philip Burch to Charles Fletcher, 16 January 1976
The invitation accepted on condition of an advance copy of Peto’s paper.
Archive tid: gjb45d00
G. F. Todd, Report on Smoking and Health by the Royal Colleges
Report on the state of the draft report as of 5 January. Goldstein and Horsfield considering Burch’s reply.
Archive tid: wmi32a99
G. F. Todd, Round-up on Report by Royal Colleges
The state of the draft report as of 5 February. Plans for the Hammersmith seminar.
Archive tid: kli32a99
Philip Burch to Cyril Clarke, 10 March 1976
Burch has received nothing from Goldstein or Horsfield.
Archive tid: ijb45d00
Philip Burch to Cyril Clarke, 26 March 1976
Burch now assumes that no reply will be forthcoming.
Archive tid: yjb45d00
Philip Burch to Charles Fletcher, 26 March 1976
Burch now assumes that no reply will be forthcoming.
Archive tid: xjb45d00

Ireland, January 1976

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 26 January 1976
A lecture trip to Dublin and Belfast.
Archive tid: pjb44e00

Nicholas Wald and his smoking machine

A Half-life of Burch

Nicholas J. Wald. Mortality from lung cancer and coronary heart-disease in relation to changes in smoking habits, The Lancet 307/7951 (17 January 1976), 136-8.
Falling rates of lung cancer and rising rates of coronary heart disease can be explained by the introduction of filter cigarettes.
Archive tid: ldh86a99 Offsite (£)
Geoffrey Myddleton, Mortality from lung cancer, The Lancet 307/7962 (3 April 1976), 740-1.
Wald’s conclusions about lung cancer in women challenged.
Archive tid: skx61f00 Offsite (£)
Carl C. Seltzer, Mortality from lung cancer, The Lancet 307/7962 (3 April 1976), 741.
Wald ignores the transition from ICD7 to ICD8. An alternative analysis casts doubt on his results.
Archive tid: skx61f00 Offsite (£)
Niri Orlien, Mortality from lung cancer, The Lancet 307/7962 (3 April 1976), 741-2.
Criticism of Wald’s experimental design.
Archive tid: skx61f00 Offsite (£)
N. Wald, Mortality from lung cancer, The Lancet 307/7962 (3 April 1976), 742.
Myddleton relies on a small sample of American women. Seltzer’s alternative analysis is misleading. Orlien has been answered in new work.
Archive tid: skx61f00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Mortality from coronary heart disease, The Lancet 307/7969 (22 May 1976), 1126-1127.
A defence of Seltzer. Wald selectively cites data which suits his case.
Archive tid: uyl85e00 Offsite (£)

Publication and reception of The Biology of Cancer

A Half-life of Burch

(Extracts)

P. R. J. Burch, The Biology of Cancer: A New Approach (Lancaster, 1976)
Burch’s general theory of cancer as autoaggressive disease.
Archive tid: msd91f00
A. Munro Neville, The biology of cancer, British Medical Journal 1/6019 (15 May 1976), 1216.
Burch’s theory of cancer needs to be subjected to experimental proof and has not been. Experimental data actually shows that somatic mutation is not involved in cancer.
Archive tid: mac3aa00 Offsite (£)
N. E. Day, The biology of cancer, New Scientist 69/993 (25 March 1976), 704.
Burch ignores the growing evidence that cancer is largely the result of environmental carcinogens.
Archive tid: nac3aa00 Offsite (free)
The biology of cancer, The Lancet 307/7960 (20 March 1976), 617.
Burch’s five-parameter model will fit any data and he ignores environmental carcinogens.
Archive tid: jtw2aa00 Offsite (£)
Theory in medicine, World Medicine (5 May 1976).
Burch’s aim is to equip medicine with the general theoretical framework which it sorely lacks.
Archive tid: njb45d00

Israel, April 1976

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 13 April 1976
A lecture trip to Israel. Plans for a conference at Zurich.
Archive tid: zer56b00

Switzerland, April 1976

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and lung cancer: a causal connexion? in Verband der Zigarettenindustrie (ed.), Rauchen im wissenschaftlichen Meinungsstreit. Internationales Symposion, April 29-30 1976 (Ruschlikon/Zurich, 1977)
The text of a conference paper delivered in Zurich in 1976. A very accessible account of Burch’s ideas on smoking and lung cancer.
Archive tid: vua66b00
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 10 May 1976
Return from Switzerland. Account of the Hammersmith seminar.
Archive tid: ojb45d00

Confrontation at Hammersmith

A Half-life of Burch

P. N. Lee, Smoking and lung cancer, Talks by Prof. P. R. J. Burch and Mr. R. Peto at the Hammersmith Hospital, 6th May 1976
Lee’s account of the Hammersmith seminar.
Archive tid: iku02a99
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 10 May 1976
Burch’s account of the Hammersmith seminar.
Archive tid: ojb45d00

The Burch-Fletcher correspondence

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Charles Fletcher, 29 June 1976
Discussion of the draft report.
Archive tid: fov32d00
Charles Fletcher to Philip Burch, 6 July 1976
Discussion of the draft report.
Archive tid: zib45d00
Philip Burch to Charles Fletcher, 19 July 1976
Further discussion of the draft report.
Archive tid: bey38e00
Charles Fletcher to Philip Burch, 30 July 1976
Further discussion of the draft report.
Archive tid: wib45d00
Philip Burch to Charles Fletcher, 5 August 1976
Further discussion of the draft report.
Archive tid: xib45d00
Charles Fletcher to Philip Burch, 15 September 1976
Further discussion of the draft report. Fletcher’s impatience with Burch.
Archive tid: qib45d00
Philip Burch to Charles Fletcher, 29 September 1976
Burch’s determination to subject the causal theory to the falsificationist method.
Archive tid: rib45d00

The BMJ announces the new line

A Half-life of Burch

Lung cancer and smoking: is there proof? British Medical Journal 2/6033 (21 August, 1976), 439-40.
The current case against smoking, based on Richard Peto’s remarks in debate with Burch in May 1976. Criticises Burch by name.
Archive tid: hgm31a99 Offsite (free)
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 26 August 1976
The editorial enclosed. Helsinki and St Petersburg (Leningrad).
Archive tid: oib45d00
P. R. J. Burch, Lung cancer and smoking: is there proof? British Medical Journal 2/6036 (11 September, 1976), 640.
The new emphasis on sex ratios is based on a superficial and incomplete analysis. The problems of self-selection and misdiagnosis have still not been addressed.
Archive tid: kpw2aa00 Offsite (£)

Finland, August 1976

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 26 August 1976
A lecture trip to Helsinki and excursion to St Petersburg (Leningrad).
Archive tid: oib45d00

Exchange with Julian Peto

A Half-life of Burch

J. Peto, The biology of cancer. A new approach, British Journal of Cancer 34/3 (September 1976), 304-5.
Burch’s explanation of lung cancer is Procrustean and relies on the ‘smoking paradoxes’. An argument from sex-ratios is evidence for the causal theory.
Archive tid: tsz61f00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, The biology of cancer. A new approach, British Journal of Cancer.35/3 (March 1977), 388-9.
Peto only considers a few pages of the book. His argument from sex ratios does not predict observed rates of lung cancer.
Archive tid: mib45d00 Offsite (£)
J. Peto, The biology of cancer. A new approach, British Journal of Cancer 35/3 (March 1977), 89-90.
Burch’s predicted rates of lung cancer challenged with different assumptions about misdiagnosis.
Archive tid: iib45d00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, The biology of cancer. A new approach, British Journal of Cancer 35/4 (April 1977), 509-10.
Peto’s new assumptions contradict previous claims and he does not address Burch’s evidence about time lags. The autoaggressive theory defended against Peto’s remarks.
Archive tid: jib45d00 Offsite (£)
J. Peto, The biology of cancer. A new approach, British Journal of Cancer 35/4 (April 1977), 510.
Three points in Burch’s reply controverted.
Not in archive Offsite (£)

The Doctors’ Study at 20 years

A Half-life of Burch

Richard Doll and Richard Peto, Mortality in relation to smoking: 20 years observations on male British doctors. British Medical Journal 2/6051 (25 December, 1976) 1525-36
The case against smoking is confirmed by new data from the Doctors’ study.
Archive tid: jbk92f00 Offsite (free)

1977

That lethal weed

A Half-life of Burch

That lethal weed, British Medical Journal 2/1522 (25 December, 1976), 1522.
Acclaims the new Doll-Peto paper.
Not in archive Offsite (free)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and health, British Medical Journal 1/6054 (15 January 1977), 165.
Doll and Peto rely on an illegitimate comparison of doctors with the general population.
Archive tid: aiw02i00 Offsite (£)

The challenge of cancer

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, The challenge of cancer, University of Leeds Review 20 (1977), 35-54.
The autoaggressive theory of cancer.
Not in archive

New health warnings

A Half-life of Burch

David Loshak, Anti-smoking statistics attacked, Daily Telegraph 14 March 1977.
Proposed new health warnings criticised by Burch.
Archive tid: wdy38e00
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 16 March 1977
A cutting of Loshak’s report enclosed.
Archive tid: vdy38e00

Rejection by the Lancet: exchange with Sharp

A Half-life of Burch

D. W. Sharp to Philip Burch, 14 April 1977
“The Oxford workers” have recommended rejection of Burch’s recent letter. Orthodoxy on lung cancer.
Archive tid: zdy38e00
Philip Burch to D.W. Sharp, 27 April 1977
Sharp’s orthodoxy contested.
Archive tid: eoc54e00

In search of Doll’s data

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 5 April 1977
Data promised by Doll and Peto is not available at the Radcliffe Science Library.
Archive tid: dey38e00
Peter Lee to Richard Peto, 9 February 1977
A request for the data in the Radcliffe Science Library.
Archive tid: eeb91a99
Richard Peto to Peter Lee, 10 February 1977
The data is not yet in the Radcliffe Science Library but it will be soon.
Archive tid: deb91a99
P. N. Lee, Further data from British Doctors Study
Lee can circulate Peto’s data at last (12 April, 1980)
Archive tid: wsd71d00
P. N. Lee, Has the mortality of British doctors improved with the reductions in their cigarette smoking? British Medical Journal 2/5204 (15 December 1979), 1538-1540.
Peto’s data does not entirely support his conclusions.
Archive tid: wpz45a99 Offsite (free)

When is significant not significant?

A Half-life of Burch

Richard Doll and Richard Peto, Mortality among doctors in different occupations, British Medical Journal 1/6074 (4 June 1977), 1433-6.
A statistical analysis relating the causes of death in doctors to their medical specialisms.
Archive tid: yhd20a00 Offsite (free)
Hugh Dudley, When is significant not significant? British Medical Journal 2/6078 (2 July 1977), 473.
Doll and Peto do not adopt a consistent standard of statistical significance.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
Richard Doll and Richard Peto, When is significant not significant? British Medical Journal 2/6081 (23 July 1977), 259.
Over-slavish adherence to rigid criteria of statistical significance is a fault.
Archive tid: ztd3aa00 Offsite (£)
G. Silverman, When is significant not significant? British Medical Journal 2/6081 (23 July 1977), 259.
It is a serious error to be a slave to statistical methods.
Archive tid: ztd3aa00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch and M. Susan Chesters, When is significant not significant? British Medical Journal 2/6083 (6 August 1977), 385-6.
Doll and Peto’s calculations omit an important standard correction and they formulate hypotheses after performing a test.
Archive tid: aud3aa00 Offsite (£)
W. H. St John-Brooks, When is significant not significant? British Medical Journal 2/6083 (6 August 1977), 386.
Doll and Peto’s method is subjective, and exaggerated claims discredit the campaign against smoking.
Archive tid: aud3aa00 Offsite (£)
Robert J. Hetherington, When is significant not significant? British Medical Journal 2/6083 (6 August 1977), 385.
Accumulated non-significant results should be treated as significant.
Archive tid: aud3aa00 Offsite (£)

Interlude: Burch in Italy

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 5 April 1977
Response from the Radcliffe Science Library. A trip to Rome threatened by a strike.
Archive tid: dey38e00
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 27 April 1977
A conference in Rome followed by an Italian holiday with Burch’s daughter.
Archive tid: ydy38e00

Mortality associated with the pill

A Half-life of Burch

Valerie Beral, Cardiovascular disease mortality trends and oral contraceptive use in young women, The Lancet 308/7994 (13 November 1976), 1047-51.
A study of 21 countries shows that death from cardiovascular disease has increased in proportion to the uptake of oral contraception.
Archive tid: ywd67a00 Offsite (£)
Royal College of General Practitioners’ Oral Contraceptive Study, Mortality among oral-contraceptive users, The Lancet 310/8041 (8 October 1977), 727-31.
A prospective study by the RCGP shows that women taking the pill have a higher risk of death from cardiovascular disease. [This study was conducted by Beral and earlier results had been published in 1974.]
Archive tid: wdy87h00 Offsite (£)
M. P. Vessey, K. McPherson and Bridget Johnson, Mortality among women participating in the Oxford/Family Planning Association contraceptive study, The Lancet 310/8041 (8 October 1977), 731-3.
The study shows that women taking the pill have a higher risk of death from cardiovascular disease.
Archive tid: snt4aa00 Offsite (£)
Mortality associated with the pill, The Lancet 310/8041 (8 October 1977), 747-8.
Editorial. A plea for caution about the results of the studies.
Archive tid: fip61e00 Offsite (£)
P. B. S. Fowler, Mortality associated with the pill, The Lancet 310/8043 (22 October 1977), 879.
Questions about analysis of the data from the studies.
Archive tid: qnt4aa00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Mortality associated with the pill, The Lancet 310/8043 (22 October 1977), 879-80.
Beral’s study of 21 countries incidentally shows that smoking is not a cause of cardiovascular disease.
Archive tid: qnt4a00 Offsite (£)

Effects of Cigarette-Smoking on Fetus and Child

A Half-life of Burch

American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Environmental Hazards, Effects of cigarette smoking on the fetus and child, Pediatrics 57/3 (March 1976), 411-3.
Reasons for a new campaign against smoking in pregnancy.
Archive tid: ley99b00 Offsite (free)
P. R. J. Burch, Effects of cigarette smoking on the fetus and child, Pediatrics 60/5 (November 1977), 766.
A defence of Yerushalmy’s views on smoking and pregnancy.
Archive tid: qjb45d00 Offsite ($)

Dose-response effect of maternal smoking

A Half-life of Burch

S. M. Garn, H. A. Shaw and K. D. McCabe, Dose-response effect of maternal smoking, Pediatrics 62/5 (November 1978), 861-862.
A dose-response relationship between smoking in pregnancy and premature birth and low birth weight is evidence against Burch’s constitutional hypothesis.
Not in archive Offsite ($)
P. R. J Burch, Dose-response effect of maternal smoking, Pediatrics 62/5 (November 1978), 862-863.
Garn’s evidence does not refute the constitutional hypothesis, due originally to Yerushalmy.
Archive tid: wnz88b00 Offsite ($)

1978

Doll at the Royal Statistical Society

A Half-life of Burch

Richard Doll, The age distribution of cancer: implications for models of carcinogenesis, Journal of the Royal Statistical Society A 134 (1971), 133-166.
A major paper on the statistics of cancer and carcinogenic mechanisms read to the Royal Statistical Society in 1971. Peter Armitage poses a tricky question.
Archive tid: ivt10j00
“the official biography of Doll”
Conrad Keating, Smoking Kills (Oxford, 2009).

Burch at the Royal Statistical Society

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and lung cancer: the problem of inferring cause (with discussion). Journal of the Royal Statistical Society A 141 (1978), 437-477.
A major paper on smoking and lung cancer read to the Royal Statistical Society with the subsequent discussion.
Archive tid: aal39d00
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking, lung cancer and scientific debate, Tabak-Journal 2 (1979), 198-200.
Burch’s account of the meeting of the Royal Statistical Society.
Archive tid: xpg72a99
Philip Burch to Conrad Seltzer, 15 February 1978
Seltzer to speak in support of Burch at the RSS meeting. The rules of discussion explained.
Archive tid: shb45d00
P. N. Lee, Smoking and lung cancer: the problem of inferring cause
Lee’s account of the RSS meeting and subsequent discussion.
Archive tid: szx72a99
P. N. Lee, Comments on “Smoking, Lung Cancer and Scientific Debate” by Prof P. R. J. Burch
Burch’s arguments considered and rejected.
Archive tid: wpg72a99
Carl Seltzer to Donald K Hoel, 7 June 1978
Impressions of the RSS meeting and other news from a trip to England.
Archive tid: mbb45d00

The Doll curve

A Half-life of Burch

Richard Doll and Richard Peto, Cigarette smoking and bronchial carcinoma: dose and time relationships among regular smokes and lifelong non-smokers, Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health 32/4 (December 1978), 303-313.
An attempt to discover a quadratic dose-response relationship in the Doctors data.
Archive tid: ayg45j00 Offsite (free)

Part 3: Heart Disease

Coronary heart disease: tests of an etiological hypothesis

A Half-life of Burch

Philip R. J. Burch, Coronary heart disease. Tests of etiological hypotheses, American Heart Journal 93/6 (June 1977), 805-806.
Is the association of smoking with coronary heart disease a causal one? Some possible tests.
Archive tid: kdb62f00 Offsite ($)

Smoking and the cause of CHD

A Half-life of Burch

Christ Aravanis, Smoking and the cause of CHD, American Heart Journal 96/3 (September 1978), 423.
Aravanis has found a small positive correlation between smoking and CHD in his study of Crete and Corfu mentioned by Burch in his paper Coronary heart disease.
Not in archive Offsite ($)
Philip R. J. Burch, Smoking and the cause of CHD, American Heart Journal 96/3 (September 1978), 423.
Aravanis had not previously reported a statistically significant correlation. Burch’s Gerontology paper indicates that smoking does not have a causal role.
Not in archive Offsite ($)

Why don’t they read the old books?

A Half-life of Burch

P. Burch, Coronary disease: risk factors, age and time, American Heart Journal 97/4 (April 1979), 415-419.
A summary of Burch’s conclusions in the Gerontology paper.
Archive tid: bmp74b00 Offsite (broken link)
Otto Neurath, Why don’t they read the old books? American Heart Journal 97/5 (May 1979), 680.
Problems with the cholesterol theory of heart disease and epidemiology in general.
Not in archive Offsite (free)
Philip R. J. Burch, Why don’t they read the old books? Reply, American Heart Journal 97/5 (May 1979), 680-681.
Neurath is correct, but epidemiology can be conducted in a rigorous way.
Not in archive Offsite (free)

Coronary Heart Disease: Risk Factors and Ageing

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Coronary heart disease: risk factors and ageing, Gerontology 24 (1978), 123-155.
The first of Burch’s two major papers on coronary heart disease.
Archive tid: kie20a00 Offsite ($)

Coronary Heart Disease and Smoking

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Coronary heart disease and smoking, Tabak-Journal 4 (1978), 244.
Conclusions of the Gerontology paper summarised.
Archive tid: cpj68e00

An end to heart attacks?

A Half-life of Burch

An end to heart attacks? World Medicine (12 July 1978).
Editorial. The prospect that coronary heart disease could be eliminated by abstention from smoking and dietary fat.
Not in archive
P. R. J. Burch, Coronary heart disease, World Medicine (20 September 1978), 79.
Burch’s investigations published in Gerontology suggest that risk factors for CHD such as smoking are non-causal.
Not in archive

1979

Coronary disease: risk factors and time

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Coronary disease: risk factors, age and time, American Heart Journal 97/4 (April 1979), 415-419.
The conclusions of Burch’s Gerontology paper summarised. Criticism of risk factor epidemiology.
Archive tid: qgz88b00 Offsite

The tumorigenic theory of atherosclerosis

A Half-life of Burch

Earl P. Benditt and John M. Benditt, Evidence for a monoclonal origin of human atherosclerotic plaques, Proceedings of the National Academy of Science 70/6 (June 1973,) 1753-1756.
The plaques involved in CHD are monoclonal, like cancers.
Archive tid: agy95d00 Offsite (free)
P. R. J. Burch, The tumorigenic theory of atherosclerosis, Archives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine 103 (September 1979), 543-544.
The Benditts’ work corroborates that of Burch on heart disease and cancer.
Archive tid: gez10a00
P. Constantinides, The tumorigenic theory of atherosclerosis, Archives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine 103 (September 1979), 544.
Problems with the Benditts’ study.
Archive tid: gez10a00
P. N. Lee, “The Tumorigenic Theory of Atherosclerosis” by P. R. J. Burch
Burch’s work threatens to become a theory of everything.
Archive tid: jxn36a99

1980

Ischaemic heart disease: epidemiology, risk factors and cause

A Half-life of Burch

Philip R. J. Burch, Ischaemic heart disease: epidemiology, risk factors and cause, Cardiovascular Research 14/6 (1 June 1980), 307-338.
The second of the major papers on ischaemic (coronary) heart disease.
Archive tid: hkw02i00 Offsite ($)
P. N. Lee, “Ischaemic heart disease: epidemiology, risk factors and cause” by P. R. J. Burch
Burch’s mathematics analysed and alternative interpretations proposed.
Archive tid: jcp36a99

Heart disease in different ethnic groups

A Half-life of Burch

Heart disease in different ethnic groups, British Medical Journal 281/1638 (16 August 1980), 469-70.
Editorial. The study of different ethnic groups might shed light on genetic influence on heart disease.
Archive tid: zrq65b00 Offsite (free)
Philip R. J. Burch, Heart disease in different ethnic groups, British Medical Journal 281/6242 (13 September 1980), 743-744.
Burch’s Cardiovascular Research paper supplies just such evidence.
Not in archive Offsite (£)

Smoking and coronary disease

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and coronary disease, American Heart Journal 100/4 (October 1980), 421-423.
Editorial on the role of randomised prospective studies and twins studies in investigating causation.
Archive tid: ngz88b00 Offsite (free)

Exercise and the heart

A Half-life of Burch

J. N. Morris, M. G. Everitt, R. Pollard and S. P. W. Chave. Vigorous exercise in leisure-time: protection against coronary heart disease, The Lancet 312/8206 (6 December 1980), 1207-10.
A prospective study of male civil servants appears to show the protective effect of exercise against heart disease.
Archive tid: oto74b00 Offsite (£)
R. J. Jarrett, Exercise and the heart, The Lancet 317/8210 (3 January 1981), 36.
Morris ignores the effects of self-selection.
Archive tid: mgz88b00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Exercise and the heart, The Lancet 317/8210 (3 January 1981), 36.
A causal effect, self-selection and genetic predisposition all account for Morris’s observations.
Archive tid: mgz88b00 Offsite (£)
J. N. Morris, M. G. Everitt, R. Pollard and S. P. W. Chave. Exercise and the heart, The Lancet 317/8214 (31 January 1981), 257.
Reasons to exclude self-selection and objections to a genetic explanation of the findings.
Not in archive Offsite (£)

Mortality in cigarette smokers and quitters

A Half-life of Burch

Gary D. Friedman, A. B. Siegelaub, Loring G. Dales and Carl C. Seltzer, Characteristics predictive of coronary heart disease in ex-smokers before they stopped smoking: comparison with persistent smokers and nonsmokers. Journal of Chronic Diseases 32/1-2 (1979), 175-190.
Data from the Kaiser Permanente study shows that future quitters are significantly different from future continuing smokers.
Archive tid: hsp20a00 Offsite ($)
Gary D. Friedman, Loring G. Dales and Hans K. Ury, Mortality in middle-aged smokers and nonsmokers. New England Journal of Medicine 300/5 (1 February 1979), 213-7.
Analysis of Kaiser Permanente data indicates that smoking has a causal effect on CHD.
Archive tid: uzk39d00 Offsite ($)
Carl C. Seltzer, Smoking and Coronary Heart Disease: What are we to Believe? American Heart Journal 100/3 (September 1980), 275-280.
The Kaiser Permanente study and the Whitehall study suggest that future quitters are self-selected.
Archive tid: yam24f00 Offsite (free)
Gary D. Friedman, Diana B. Petitti, Richard D. Bawol and A. B. Siegelaub, Mortality in cigarette smokers and quitters: effect of base-line difference, New England Journal of Medicine 304/23 (4 June 1981), 1407-10.
An analysis of the Kaiser Permanente data shows that the difference between future quitters and continuing smokers is not genetic.
Archive tid: yfo2aa00 Offsite ($)
Philip R. J. Burch, Mortality in cigarette smokers and quitters, New England Journal of Medicine 305/19 (8 October 1981), 889-890.
Friedman’s subgroups are self-selected and ought to be treated as samples from different populations.
Archive tid: okw02i00 Offsite ($)
Carl C. Seltzer, Mortality in cigarette smokers and quitters, New England Journal of Medicine 305/19 (8 October 1981), 890.
Friedman’s subgroups are self-selected and his reasoning is invalid.
Archive tid: okw02i00 Offsite ($)
Gary D. Friedman, Diana B. Petitti and Richard D. Bawol. Mortality in cigarette smokers and quitters. New England Journal of Medicine 305/19 (8 October 1981), 890.
The statistical analysis employed was the only one possible. Objections to the Whitehall study.
Archive tid: okw02i00 Offsite ($)
“the unsympathetic version”
Robert N. Proctor, Golden Holocaust (Berkeley, 2012), p. 266-7.

Carl Seltzer to Arnold Relman, 10 February 1979
Seltzer’s version of the breach with Friedman.
Archive tid: olz61e00
Carl Seltzer to Alexander Holtzman, 31 March 1979
One of Seltzer’s findings censored by the government and confirmed by Friedman.
Archive tid: tle58d00
P. N. Lee, “Mortality in cigarette smokers and quitters”, Letters by P. R. J. Burch, C. C. Seltzer, G. D. Friedman et. al.
Friedman had the best of the controversy and he was wise not to engage with Burch.
Archive tid: rcp36a99

Part 5: Falsification

Whitehall

A Half-life of Burch

Geoffrey Rose and P. J. S. Hamilton, A randomised controlled trial of the effect on middle-aged men of advice to stop smoking Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health 32/4 (December 1978), 275-281.
Archive tid: ziv05a99 Offsite (free)

Progression of tumours and non-neoplastic disorders as manifestations of a common biological origin

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J Burch, Progression of tumours and non-neoplastic disorder as manifestations of a comon biological phenomenon, Medical Hypotheses 4/2 (March-April 1978), 101-110.
A study of two cancers, parkinsonism and male baldness in the light of Burch’s theory of autoaggressive disease.
Not in archive Offsite (£)

Are 90% of cancers preventable?

A Half-life of Burch

Are 90% of cancers preventable? The Lancet 309/8013 (26 March 1977), 685-7.
A ‘rumour’ to that effect and the evidence.
Archive tid: pgk32f00 Offsite (£)
A. J. McMichael, Increases in laryngeal cancer in Britain and Australia in relation to alcohol and tobacco consumption trends, The Lancet 311/8076 (10 June 1978), 1244-6.
Convergent rates of laryngeal cancer in Britain and Australia can be explained by convergent rates of drinking. A link to smoking is not so evident.
Archive tid: ypa38c00 Offsite (£)
The Times Medical Correspondent, Cancer: effects of alcohol and tobacco, The Times 60328 (15 June 1978), 18.
A popular summary of McMichael’s paper.
Not in archive
K. S. Brown, W. H. Cherry and W. F. Forbes, Laryngeal cancer and consumption of alcohol and tobacco, The Lancet 312/8099 (18 November 1978), 1099-1100.
Discussion of McMichael’s paper.
Archive tid: rsd3a00 Offsite (£)
A. J. McMichael, Laryngeal cancer and consumption of alcohol and tobacco, The Lancet 312/8099 (18 November 1978), 1099-1100.
Brown, Cherry and Forbes’s points illustrate the need for multifactorial thinking
Archive tid: rsd3a00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Are 90% of cancers preventable? IRCS Medical Science 6 (1978), 353-356.
Results from Burch’s investigations of oesophagal and laryngeal cancer do not support McMichael’s conclusions.
Archive tid: zfc56a99

Smoking out censorship

A Half-life of Burch

[Richard Peto], Request to journalists.
An appeal from Richard Peto to the press not to publicise Hans Eysenck’s book The Causes and Effects of Smoking.
Archive tid: lbf55d00
Smoking out censorship, New Scientist 88/1232 (18/25 December 1980), 756.
Editorial. Smoking causes lung cancer, but the request amounts to character assassination and the suppression of scientific debate.
Archive tid: osp23a00 Offsite (free)
Andrew J. Crump, Smoking out censorship, New Scientist 89/1235 (8 January 1981), 94.
Peto is right: the controversial Eysenck ought not to be given publicity.
Archive tid: mgz88b00 Offsite (free)
P. Burch, Smoking out censorship, New Scientist 89/1235 (8 January 1981), 94-5.
Reasons to dispute that smoking causes lung cancer.
Archive tid: mgz88b00 Offsite (free)

Pathology, inference and carcinogenesis

A Half-life of Burch

Philip R. J. Burch, Pathology, inference and carcinogenesis, in S C Sommers and P P Rosen (eds.), Pathology Annual 15/2 (New York, 1980), 21-44.
An exposition of Burch’s general theory of autoaggressive disease for a medical readership.
Archive tid: hdl59d00

Stochastic models of stomach cancer

A Half-life of Burch

K. G. Manton, E. Stallard, D. Burdick and H. D. Tolley, A stochastic compartment model of stomach cancer with correlated waiting time distributions, International Journal of Epidemiology 8/3 (September, 1979) 283-291.
A theory of stomach cancer assessed against others including that of Burch.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Stochastic models of stomach cancer, International Journal of Epidemiology 9/3 (September 1980), 285-287.
Burch defends his theory.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
K. G. Manton, E. Stallard, Stochastic models of stomach cancer, International Journal of Epidemiology 9/3 (September 1980), 287-288.
Manton rejects Burch’s arguments.
Not in archive Offsite (£)

Individuals transplacentally exposed to maternal smoking may be at increased cancer risk in adult life

A Half-life of Burch

Richard B. Everson, Individuals transplacentally exposed to maternal smoking may be at increased cancer risk in adult life, The Lancet 316/8186 (19 July 1980), 123-7.
A hypothesis about the effects of smoking in pregnancy and a proposed test of it.
Archive tid: kfh54a99 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Cancer risk from transplacental exposure to maternal smoking, The Lancet 316/8189 (9 August 1980), 311.
Everson’s proposed study would prove nothing.
Archive tid: odv64e00 Offsite (£)
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 11 August 1980
Critical remarks about the latest Surgeon General’s report with its focus on heart disease. The letter to the Lancet – an experiment to determine whether they still published Burch.
Archive tid: glh94e00

Smoking and lung cancer: tests of a causal hypothesis

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and lung cancer: tests of a causal hypothesis, Journal of Chronic Diseases 33/4 (1980), 221-238.
The first of the papers on the Precipitator hypothesis about smoking and lung cancer.
Archive tid: xof50d00 Offsite ($)
P. N. Lee, “Smoking and lung cancer: tests of a causal hypothesis” by P. R. J. Burch
Burch’s paper is “incredibly silly” as nobody has seriously proposed the Precipitator hypothesis.
Archive tid: mvn36a99

1981

Smoking and mortality in England and Wales, 1950 to 1976

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and mortality in England and Wales 1950 to 1976, Journal of Chronic Diseases 34/2-3 (1981), 87-103.
The second of the major papers on the Precipitator hypothesis.
Archive tid: iuw2aa00 Offsite ($)
P. N. Lee, “Smoking and mortality in England and Wales 1950 to 1976” by P. R. J. Burch
Burch has written another “silly” paper on the Precipitator hypothesis.
Archive tid: aep36a99

Smoking, lung cancer and hypothesis testing

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Smoking, lung cancer and hypothesis testing, Medical Hypotheses 7/12 (December 1981), 1461-1470.
The third of Burch’s major papers on the Precipitator hypothesis.
Archive tid: vbg65b00 Offsite (£)

Passive smoking and lung cancer

A Half-life of Burch

Takeshi Hirayama, Non-smoking wives of heavy smokers have a higher risk of lung cancer: a study from Japan, British Medical Journal 282/6259 (17 January 1981), 183-5.
One of the first studies of passive smoking.
Archive tid: hpg97c00 Offsite (free)
G. C. Sutton, Passive smoking and lung cancer, British Medical Journal 282/6265 (28 February 1981), 733.
Smokers tend to marry each other and this needs taking into account.
Archive tid: cun86d00 Offsite (free)
Sherridan L. Stock, Passive smoking and lung cancer, British Medical Journal 282/6265 (28 February 1981), 733-4.
Hirayama’s discovery is a good opportunity to impose restrictions on smoking.
Archive tid: cun86d00 Offsite (£)
G.H. Miller, Non-smoking wives of heavy smokers have a higher risk of lung cancer, British Medical Journal 282/6268 (21 March 1981), 985.
Hirayama’s results are confirmed by a study by Miller.
Archive tid: zxt04f00 Offsite (£)
Martin Rutsch, Non-smoking wives of heavy smokers have a higher risk of lung cancer, British Medical Journal 282/6268 (21 March 1981), 985.
Hirayama ignores assortive mating and one of his results is not statistically significant.
Archive tid: zxt04f00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Passive smoking and lung cancer, British Medical Journal 282/6273 (25 April 1981), 1393.
Hirayama ignores the effects of assortive mating.
Archive tid: rjv23e00 Offsite (£)
Alvan R. Feinstein, Justice, Science and the “Bad Guys”, Environmental Tobacco Smoke, 20/2 (1992), 303-5.
Archive tid: urp32d00
Vincent-Riccardo di Pierri, Rampant Antismoking Signifies Grave Danger: Materialism Out of Control (Melbourne, 2003).
Download of “the Godber Blueprint” Offsite
Christopher Snowden, Velvet Glove, Iron Fist (London, 2009).
Purchasing information and background at Offsite

Hickey, causation and the Establishment

A Half-life of Burch

Richard Hickey to Vincent de Vita, 17 July 1980
The Surgeon General’s reports for 1979 and 1980 purport to be comprehensive, but omit reference to important sceptical work.
Archive tid: otm86d00
Diane Fink to Richard Hickey, 14 August 1980
The matter has been referred to the Office of Smoking and Health.
Archive tid: vgo07c00
Richard Hickey to Diane Fink, 26 August 1980
Hickey has received no reply from the OSH. Further omissions from the Surgeon General’s reports include Burch, Yerushalmy and Fisher.
Archive tid: sno07c00
US: Cost killed study of smoking, The Philadelphia Bulletin, 6 September 1980, 43.
Vincent T. DeVita has denied that the study of beagles was cut because of negative results.
Archive tid: nfn86d00
Richard Hickey to Vincent de Vita, 9 September 1980
Is it true that a study of smoking beagles was axed because of negative results? And will a reply to Hickey’s previous letter be forthcoming?
Archive tid: mfn86d00
Diane Fink to Richard Hickey, 12 September 1980
Fink has just returned from annual leave and will reply soon.
Archive tid: ioo07c00
Diane Fink to Richard Hickey, 26 September 1980
The beagle study was cancelled for financial reasons. The Surgeon General’s reports were prepared by experts. The issue of dissident opinion has been referred to Pinney. Experts will examine the Burch paper.
Archive tid: kfn86d00
Richard Hickey to Diane Fink, 2 October 1980
The omission of Burch and Yerushalmy.
Archive tid: woo91f00
Richard Hickey to Diane Fink, 3 October 1980
Further to his last, references to some papers on pollution and cancer.
Archive tid: aio07c00
Richard Hickey to Diane Fink, 6 October 1980
Further evidence that the Surgeon General’s reports suppressed contrary evidence, including Brownlee.
Archive tid: nqa92f00
Richard Hickey to Diane Fink, 9 October 1980
The removal of Mary Poppins from a Philadelphia library was censorship and so is selective reporting. Examples of work on smoking and pregnancy which were ignored.
Archive tid: iyi8aa00
Richard Hickey to Diane Fink, 21 October 1980
Hickey has still received no reply. His paper on maternal smoking was thought worthy of inclusion in a German report so why not in the Surgeon General’s reports?
Archive tid: vgp07c00
Richard Hickey to Diane Fink, 5 November 1980
What is Fink’s explanation of regional variation in cancer rates?
Archive tid: ugp07c00
Diane Fink to Richard Hickey, 10 November 1980
Fink is in the process of responding to Hickey’s letters.
Archive tid: svj8aa00
[Arlen Specter to Robert Hutchings, 13 January 1981]
Not in archive
Robert Hutchings to Arlen Specter, 19 May 1981
There is overwhelming evidence that smoking is harmful. The papers cited by Hickey were not relevant to the topic of the Surgeon General’s 1981 report The Changing Cigarette.
Archive tid: ghp07c00
Richard Hickey to Robert Schweiker, 20 May 1981
Hickey has still received no response to his letters.
Archive tid: rvj8aa00
Joseph Fraumeni to Richard Hickey, 30 June 1981
The authors of the Surgeon General’s 1964 report considered the views of Fisher and concluded that falling death rates in quitters falsified them. The preponderance of the evidence favours the causal theory.
Archive tid: kql62b00
Richard Hickey to Joseph Fraumeni, 28 July 1981
Hickey restates his point about the suppression of contrary opinion. Fraumeni has not really addressed the arguments of Fisher and Burch. The Surgeon General only quoted a few minor sceptical papers and the use of “judgment” is unscientific.
Archive tid: pvj8aa00
Arlen Specter to Richard Hickey, 10 August 1981
The reply from Hutchings is enclosed.
Archive tid: gep07c00
Diane Fink to Richard Hickey, 14 August 1981
Hickey’s letter has been forwarded to the Office of Smoking and Health.
Archive tid: ggp07c00
Richard Hickey to Arlen Specter, 14 August 1981
Hickey has received no response to numerous detailed criticisms of the Surgeon General’s reports. Hutchings’s reply is inadequate as it conflates association and causation.
Archive tid: kwj8aa00
Robert Hutchings to Richard Hickey, 9 September 1981
The composition of the 1964 committee shows it to be unbiased, and numerous objective investigations since then have concluded that smoking is harmful.
Archive tid: ghp07c00
Richard Hickey to Robert Hutchings, 21 September 1981
Hickey’s correspondence with de Vita and Fink contains numerous unanswered points, particularly the way in which Burch was ignored. Hutchings has not answered the criticisms Hickey made, which concerned selective use of the literature, confusion of correlation and causation and dose-response relationships.
Archive tid: chp07c00
Richard Hickey to Robert Schweiker, 22 September 1981
Hutchings has not answered Hickey adequately.
Archive tid: bhp07c00
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 19 August 1981
Keep up the good work.
Archive tid: hhp07c00
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 28 October 1981
Keep up the pressure on Schweiker!
Archive tid: nuj8aa00
Richard Hickey to Philip Burch, 9 November 1981
Hickey is persevering. Forthcoming work on smoking and cancer.
Archive tid: ouj8aa00
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 23 November 1981
Keep up the good work!
Archive tid: zwo07c00
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 9 December 1981
Keep up the good work! Speculations on the current bias towards environmental explanations of cancer.
Archive tid: ezj8aa00
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 9 December 1981 (second letter of the day)
Thoughts on the politicisation of science.
Archive tid: adp07c00

At the Brewers Society

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 26 October 1981
An enjoyable conference at Straford-upon-Avon with favourable feedback about Burch’s address to the Royal Statistical Society.
Archive tid: gqn54e00
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 23 November 1981
The Stratford conference and thoughts on the anti-smoking establishment.
Archive tid: ntj8aa00

Strategy of prevention

A Half-life of Burch

Geoffrey Rose, Strategy of prevention: lessons from cardiovascular disease, British Medical Journal 282/6289 (6 June 1981), 1847-51.
Rates of heart disease have fallen in the USA and Australia. Britain should follow their lead.
Archive tid: iah00a99 Offsite (free)
Philip R. J. Burch, Strategy of prevention: lessons from cardiovascular disease, British Medical Journal 282/6282 (27 June 1981), 2135-6.
We do not know why heart disease is falling in those countries. Burch’s paper in Cardiovascular Research suggests that modifying lifestyle will have no effect.
Not in archive Offsite (£)

Cigarette smoking and Parkinson disease

A Half-life of Burch

Robert J. Baumann, H. Douglas Jameson, Harlley E. McKean, Dennis G. Haack and Louise M. Weisberg, Cigarette smoking and Parkinson disease: 1. A comparison of cases with matched neighbors, Neurology 30/8 (August 1980), 839-843.
Cigarette smoking is negatively correlated with Parkinson disease: possible explanations.
Archive tid: ncu88e00 Offsite ($)
P. R. J. Burch, Cigarette smoking and Parkinson disease, Neurology 31/4 (April 1981), 500-501.
Rates of Parkinsonism did not fall with rising smoking rates, which is evidence against a protective effect.
Archive tid: loz09a00 Offsite ($)

1982

Controversy with Reif

A Half-life of Burch

Arnold E. Reif, Effect of cigarette smoking on susceptibility to lung cancer, Oncology 38/2 (1981), 76-85.
Arguments against the constitutional hypotheses of Fisher and Burch. A hypothetical mechanism whereby smoking causes lung cancer.
Archive tid: whz92f00 Offsite ($)
P. R. J. Burch, Cigarette smoking and lung cancer: a continuing controversy, Medical Hypotheses 9/3 (September 1982), 293-306.
Reif’s facts do not prove what he wants them to. The constitutional hypothesis still stands.
Archive tid: dzb43f00 Offsite (£)
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 4 September 1981
A reply to Reif dispatched to Oncology.
Archive tid: tuj8aa00
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 20 October 1981
As expected, Oncology has turned down Burch’s reply.
Archive tid: nhp07c00
Philip Burch to Marvin Kastenbaum, 1 October 1982
Burch’s reply to Reif has been published.
Archive tid: pjx82f00
P. N. Lee, Some comments on “Cigarette smoking and lung cancer: a continuing controversy” by P. R. J. Burch
Most of Burch’s points are valid, but his account of differential rates of lung cancer in men and women does not hold up.
Archive tid: nfi24a99

Cigarette smoking and coronary heart disease

A Half-life of Burch

W. A. Tweed, Does cigarette smoking cause coronary heart disease? Canadian Medical Association Journal 126/2 (15 January 1982), 102-7.
Friedman’s Kaiser Permanente study demonstrates that smoking causes CHD. The arguments of Burch and Seltzer dismissed.
Not in archive Offsite (free)
P. R. J. Burch, Cigarette smoking and coronary heart disease, Canadian Medical Association Journal 127/2 (15 July 1982), 107.
Burch’s papers in Gerontology and Cardiovascular Research suggest that the risk factors for CHD are not causal.
Not in archive Offsite (free)
W. A. Tweed, Cigarette smoking and coronary heart disease, Canadian Medical Association Journal 127/2 (15 July 1982), 107-8.
Burch’s arguments dismissed.
Not in archive Offsite (free)

The Waxman bill

A Half-life of Burch

New light on smoking versus health debate. Congressional Record. Extension of Remarks (E 3830-2) Aug 11 (1982)
A digest of Burch’s work on smoking and health submitted to the Congress of the United States.
Archive tid: opu56b00
Archive tid: gac46e00
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 12 March 1982
The submission to Congress enclosed. What does Seltzer think?
Archive tid: fgt74e00
Carl Seltzer to Donald Hoel, 27 March 1982
Burch’s submission is too long and detailed but makes good points
Archive tid: nku25e00

1983

Submission to Senator East

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to John East, 11 May 1983
Burch presents his submission, with a few updates.
Archive tid: ppz45d00
P. R. J. Burch, Comments on a bill, S. 772, of the 98th Congress, 1st session, introduced by Mr. Hatch, Mr Packwood and Mr. Kennedy
A summary of Burch’s work on smoking and disease.
Archive tid: ppz45d00

Oslo and MRFIT

A Half-life of Burch

I. Hjermann, I. Holme, K. Velve Byre and P. Leren, Effect of diet and smoking intervention on the incidence of coronary heart disease, The Lancet 315/8258 (12 December 1981), 1303-10.
The Oslo study. A randomised, prospective study showed no effect on health from a changed diet and giving up smoking.
Archive tid: tvi97e00 Offsite (£)
Multiple Risk Factor Intervention Trial Research Group, Multiple risk factor intervention trial. Risk factor changes and mortality results, Journal of the American Medical Association 248/12 (24 September 1982), 1465-77.
The MRFIT study. A randomised, prospective study showed no effect on health from a changed lifestyle which including giving up smoking.
Archive tid: mfg74b00 Offsite ($)
MRFIT and the goals of the Journal, Journal of the American Medical Association 248/12 (24 September 1982), 1501.
The results of MRFIT are disappointing but improved health in both of the randomised groups is welcome.
Archive tid: itm66a00 Offsite ($)
Paul Leren, Anders Helgeland, Ingvar Hjermann and Ingvar Holme, Commentary. MRFIT and the Oslo study, Journal of the American Medical Association 249/7 (18 February 1983), 893-4.
The disappointing results of Oslo and MRFIT may be due to lack of statistical power.
Archive tid: zrd19a00 Offsite ($)
Philip R. J. Burch, The multiple risk factor intervention trial, Journal of the American Medical Association 249/11 (18 March 1983), 1435.
Burch’s studies of cardiovascular disease suggest that the risk factors are not causes.
Archive tid: gvs47a00 Offsite ($)
Carl C. Seltzer, The multiple risk factor intervention trial, Journal of the American Medical Association 249/11 (18 March 1983), 1435-6.
The Whitehall and Oslo studies show that the failure of MRFIT is no aberration.
Archive tid: gvs47a00 Offsite ($)
Kurt A. Oster, The multiple risk factor intervention trial, Journal of the American Medical Association 249/11 (18 March 1983), 1436.
The failure of MRFIT must be due to a faulty analysis of the Framingham study.
Archive tid: gvs47a00 Offsite ($)
David B. Gordon, The multiple risk factor intervention trial, Journal of the American Medical Association 249/11 (18 March 1983), 1436-7.
On the treatment of hypertension.
Archive tid: gvs47a00 Offsite ($)
Weldon J. Walker, The multiple risk factor intervention trial, Journal of the American Medical Association 249/11 (18 March 1983), 1437.
On the treatment of hypertension.
Archive tid: gvs47a00 Offsite ($)
Irwin D. J. Bross, The multiple risk factor intervention trial, Journal of the American Medical Association 249/11 (18 March 1983), 1437.
The insignificant difference in lung cancer rates between the two groups can be explained as competitive mortality from heart disease.
Archive tid: gvs47a00 Offsite ($)
Jeffrey A. Cutler,The multiple risk factor intervention trial, Journal of the American Medical Association 249/11 (18 March 1983), 1437.
Reasons to think that the risk factors are causes. Possible explanation of the null result.
Archive tid: gvs47a00 Offsite ($)

Radiation-induced cancer

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Radiation-induced cancer, Health Physics 43/2 (1982), 275.
A protest against the use of “radiogenic” to mean “caused by radiation”.
Not in archive.

Cigarette smoking and ulcerative colitis

A Half-life of Burch

Hershel Jick and Alexander M. Walker, Cigarette smoking and ulcerative colitis. New England Journal of Medicine 308/5 (3 February 1983), 261-3.
A study suggests that smoking protects against ulcerative colitis. Alternatives to a causal explanation.
Archive tid: fwr97e00/pdf

Offsite ($)
John C. Bailar III, Cigarettes, ulcerative colitis, and inferences from uncontrolled data, New England Journal of Medicine 308/5 (3 February 1983), 275-7.
The study does not prove a protective effect of smoking: possible alternatives. It took years to persuade medical opinion that smoking causes lung cancer.
Archive tid: fwr97e00 Offsite ($)
S. N. Gyde and R. N. Allen, Cigarette smoking and ulcerative colitis, New England Journal of Medicine 308/24 (16 June 1983), 1476.
The authors report a similar result of their own.
Archive tid: sfk8aa00 Offsite ($)
Evelyn J. Bowers, I. Elaine Allen and Richard J. Hickey, Cigarette smoking and ulcerative colitis. New England Journal of Medicine 308/24 (16 June 1983), 1476.
Considerations favouring the causal explanation.
Archive tid: sfk8aa00 Offsite ($)
Stephen B. Hanauer, Mark Silverstein and Joseph B. Kirsner, Cigarette smoking and ulcerative colitis, New England Journal of Medicine 308/24 (16 June 1983), 1476.
Support for Bailar’s cautious outlook.
Archive tid: sfk8aa00 Offsite ($)
P. R. J. Burch, Cigarette smoking and ulcerative colitis, New England Journal of Medicine 308/24 (16 June 1983), 1476-7.
Bailar’s caution is commendable. Sceptics about smoking and lung cancer do not find the truth unwelcome as Bailar suggested.
Archive tid: sfk8aa00 Offsite ($)
Hershel Jick and Alexander M. Walker, Cigarette smoking and ulcerative colitis, New England Journal of Medicine 308/24 (16 June 1983), 1477.
Gyde and Allen’s corroboration welcome. New anecdotal evidence for a causal explanation.
Archive tid: sfk8aa00 Offsite ($)
John C. Bailar III, Cigarette smoking and ulcerative colitis, New England Journal of Medicine 308/24 (16 June 1983), 1477.
No personal attack on Burch was intended.
Archive tid: sfk8aa00 Offsite ($)
Philip Burch to Carl Seltzer, 14 February 1983
Burch’s letter to Bailar enclosed.
Archive tid: ail68e00
Carl Seltzer to Philip Burch, 25 February 1983
Burch is right: such caution is never seen in connection with a positive correlation between smoking and disease.
Archive tid: vhl68e00

The Surgeon General’s “Epidemiological Criteria for Causality”: a critique

Exchange with Lilienfeld

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, The Surgeon General’s “epidemiologic criteria for causality”. A critique, Journal of Chronic Diseases 36/12 (1983), 821-836.
The Surgeon General’s report appeal to five criteria for establishing the causal role of smoking in disease. They are poor scientific methodology and do not prove what is claimed.
Archive tid: hms61f00 Offsite ($)
Abraham M. Lilienfeld, The Surgeon General’s “epidemiologic criteria for causality”: a criticism of Burch’s critique, Journal of Chronic Diseases 36/12 (1983), 837-845.
A defence of the five criteria and the Surgeon General’s conclusions.
Archive tid: lyh05c00 Offsite ($)
P. R. J. Burch, The Surgeon General’s “epidemiologic criteria for causality”. Reply to Lilienfeld, Journal of Chronic Diseases 37/2 (1984), 148-156.
The case against the Surgeon General’s methodology restated.
Archive tid: gms61f00 Offsite ($)

Part 5: Preventive medicine

1984

A new friendship

The Surgeon General on CHD

Visit to Southampton

More on Burch’s theory

A Half-life of Burch

Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 16 December 1983
A request to meet Burch for discussion of his work.
Archive tid: koc10a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 19 December 1983
Burch will be delighted. A copy of the Lilienfeld exchange enclosed.
Archive tid: lmm07a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 13 January 1984
An enjoyable meeting all round. The second Lilienfeld paper enclosed.
Archive tid: fmm07a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 13 January 1984
Thanks for the discussion. The latest Surgeon General’s report will follow.
Archive tid: goc10a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 19 January 1984
Thanks for the papers. Some further questions.
Archive tid: bmm07a99

Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 24 January 1984
Futher explanation of the parameter S.
tid: amm07a99 Archive
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 31 January 1984
Thornton is digesting Burch’s work and will have more questions later.
Archive tid: zlm07a99
Burch to Thornton, 2 February 1984
Outrage at the Surgeon General’s latest report.
Archive tid: mvk85a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 23 February 1984
More questions about Burch’s equations.
Archive tid: xlm07a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 27 February 1984
The questions answered at length.
Archive tid: wlm07a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 1 March 1984
Many thanks. Thornton will have more questions in due course.
Archive tid: vlm07a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 30 March 1984
An invitation to speak at the BAT research centre in Southampton on terms which will not compromise Burch’s independence.
Archive tid: utb50a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 5 April 1984
The invitation accepted and a proposed topic.
Archive tid: slm07a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 6 April 1984
The visit confirmed.
Archive tid: rlm07a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 6 June 1984
Many thanks for an interesting visit and hospitality.
Archive tid: klm07a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 18 July 1984
How does Burch’s work relate to recent advances in molecular biology?
Archive tid: hvk85a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 25 July 1984
Burch keeps a large file of new work on molecular biology. Various recent developments accord with his thinking.
Archive tid: ilm07a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 2 August 1984
Thanks for the response. Thornton will be in touch again.
Archive tid: hlm07a99

Philip Morris and tobacco funding

A Half-life of Burch

Nicholas Martin to Philip Burch, 21 July 1983
An invitation to lecture at Virginia Commonwealth University.
Archive tid: pqj34e00
Philip Burch to Nicholas Martin, 2 August 1983
Money matters and the content of Burch’s course.
Archive tid: qqj34e00
Nicholas Martin to Robert Moore, 24 January 1984
A request for funding from Philip Morris.
Archive tid: rqj34e00
Nicholas Martin to Philip Burch, 8 February 1984
Philip Morris have refused funding in order not to compromise Burch. Money may be found in other ways.
Archive tid: rii88e00
Philip Burch to Nicholas Martin, 14 February 1984
Burch’s relief at not being compromised.
Archive tid: sii88e00
Robert Moore to Stanley Scott, 16 February 1984
Philip Morris have decided not to fund Burch to maintain his integrity. Can they fund a different project instead?
Archive tid: xyx88h00
Carl Seltzer to Jetson Lincoln, 25 November 1983
Philip Morris should not contact Burch directly as he and Seltzer wish to preserve his credibility.
Archive tid: ykt74e00
P. R. J. Burch, Diet and ischaemic heart disease, The Lancet 322/8352 (24 September 1983) 743
Not in archive Offsite (£)

Normal growth and neoplastic growth

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Normal growth and neoplastic growth: are they connected? in L Gedda and P Parisi (eds.), Auxology: Human Growth In Health And Disorder, 7-21 (London, New York, San Francisco 1978).
A study of retinoblastoma in the light of Burch’s theory of autoaggressive disease.
Not in archive

Long term effect of stopping on angina

A Half-life of Burch

Risteard Mulcahy, Noel Hickey, Ian Graham and Graham McKenzie, Factors influencing long-term prognosis in male patients surviving a first coronary attack, British Heart Journal 37/2 (February 1975), 158-65.
The authors’ first study of smoking and survival from heart attacks.
Archive tid: rfe76a00 Offsite (free)
Leslie E. Daly, Risteard Mulcahy, Ian M. Graham and Noel Hickey, Long term effect on mortality of stopping smoking after unstable angina and mycardial infarction, British Medical Journal 287/6388 (30 July 1983), 324-326.
A study of smoking and survival from heart attacks indicates that smokers have a higher risk of death than ex-smokers and never smokers.
Archive tid: mzm36a99 Offsite (free)
Carl C. Seltzer, Effect of stopping smoking after unstable angina and myocardial infarction, British Medical Journal 287/6401 (29 October 1983), 1301-2.
The study also shows that ex-smokers have a better prognosis than never smokers.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
Leslie E. Daly, Risteard Mulcahy, Ian M. Graham and Noel Hickey, Effect of stopping smoking after unstable angina andmyocardial infarction, British Medical Journal 287/6401 (29 October 1983), 1302.
Possible explanations of the anomaly.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Effect of stopping smoking after unstable angina andmyocardial infarction, British Medical Journal 288/6441 (14 January 1984), 146.
The three groups of men studied are not comaparable. The Whitehall study and Burch’s own work indicate that risk factors for heart disease are not causes.
Archive tid: wmk72f00 Offsite (£)
Leslie E. Daly, Risteard Mulcahy, Ian M. Graham and Noel Hickey, Effect of stopping smoking after unstable angina and myocardial infarction, British Medical Journal 288/6411 (14 January 1984), 146.
Reasons for disregarding the anomaly. Improbability of a genetic explanation.
Archive tid: wmk72f00 Offsite (£)

Modifying risk

A Half-life of Burch

Jay H. Lubin, William J. Blot, Franco Berrino, Robert Flamant, Charles R. Gillis, Michael Kunze, Dietrich Schmähl and Giuseppe Visco, Modifying risk of developing lung cancer by changing habits of cigarette smoking, British Medical Journal 288/6435 (30 June 1984), 1953-1955.
A large-scale case control study demonstrates the benefits of stopping smoking.
Archive tid: gew22a99 Offsite (free)
P. R. J. Burch, Modifying risk of lung cancer by changing smoking habits, British Medical Journal 289/6440 (4 August 1984), 321-322.
The authors ignore self-selection and the randomised prospective studies.
Archive tid: fgf55d00 Offsite (£)

Diet and ischaemic heart disease

A Half-life of Burch

Diet and ischaemic heart disease – agreement or not? The Lancet 332/8345 (6 August 1983 317-9.
Editorial. High rates of ischaemic heart disease require new dietary advice.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
Keith Ball, Nutrition and the public, The Lancet 332/8345 (6 August 1983) 339-40.
Not in archive
New dietary advice is needed and the NACNE report should be published.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
Philip R. J. Burch, Diet and ischaemic heart disease, The Lancet 322/8352 (24 September 1983) 743.
Not in archive Offsite (£)

End of static decade?

A Half-life of Burch

End of static decade for coronary disease? British Medical Journal 289/6444 (1 September 1984), 509-510.
An editorial by A. Stewart Truswell welcoming the NACNE report.
Not in archive Offsite (free)
Philip R. J. Burch, End of static decade for coronary heart disease? British Medical Journal 289/6452 (27 October 1984), 1142.
Signs of a spontaneous reduction in rates of CHD without the need for dietary intervention.
Archive tid: glm07a99 Offsite (£)

The food scandal

A Half-life of Burch

National Advisory Committee on Nutrition Education. A Discussion paper on proposals for nutritional guidelines for health education in Britain / prepared for the National Advisory Committee on Nutrition Education by an ad hoc working party under the chairmanship of W.P.T. James, 1983.
A government report on diet.
Not in archive
Geoffrey Cannon, Diet Report sticks in ministerial gullets, New Scientist 100/1380 (20 October 1983), 160.
The history and politics of the report.
Not in archive Offsite (free)
Caroline Walker and Geoffrey Cannon, The food scandal : what’s wrong with the British diet and how to put it right (London, 1984).
The history and politics of the report in detail.
Not in archive Offsite
Geoffrey Cannon, 2011 July blog
Geoffrey Cannon, 2011 August blog
Cannon’s own account
Not in archive Offsite
Not in archive Offsite
Alan Maryon-Davis with Jane Thomas, Diet 2000 : at last – a diet you can live with (London, 1984)
A recommended diet.
Not in archive
Derek Cooper, The Food Scandal, The Listener, 21 June 1984.
A review of Walker and Cannon and of Diet 2000.
Not in archive
Philip R. J. Burch, Food for thought, The Listener, 12 July 1984
Risk factor epidemiology assumes that correlation is causation.
Not in archive
Colin W. Brown, Food for thought, The Listener, 26 July 1984.
Burch is a smoking sceptic and not to be taken seriously.
Not in archive
Philip R. J. Burch, Food for thought, The Listener, 9 August 1984.
On the correct approach to epidemiology.
Not in archive

Controversy with Kristein

A Half-life of Burch

Marvin M. Kristein, 40 years of U.S. Cigarette smoking and heart disease and cancer mortality rates. Journal of Chronic Diseases 37/5 (1984), 317-323.
The causal role of cigarettes in lung cancer and CHD demonstrated from 40 years of US data.
Archive tid: oiq10a00 Offsite ($)
P. R. J. Burch, Commentary on “40 years of U.S. cigarette smoking and heart disease and cancer mortality rates”, Journal of Chronic Diseases 37/5 (1984), 325-332.
Statistical flaws in Kristein’s reasoning.
Archive tid: kyu02i00 Offsite ($)
[Marvin M. Kristein], Author’s reply, Journal of Chronic Diseases 37/5 (1984), 333-335.
Burch has misunderstood Kristein’s calculations.
Not in archive Offsite ($)
Philip R. J. Burch, Cigarette smoking and mortality rates, Journal of Chronic Diseases 38/6 (1985), 469-70.
A demonstration that Burch performed the same calculation as Kristein.
Archive tid: dbk36a99 Offsite ($)
Marvin M. Kristein, Response. Journal of Chronic Diseases 38/6 (1985), 471-3.
An attack on Burch’s motivation.
Archive tid: bvs73d00 Offsite ($)
Richard J. Hickey, Cigarette smoking, cancer, statistics and judgement, Journal of Chronic Diseases 39/5 (1986), 407-408.
Defects of the Surgeon General’s methodology. A defence of Burch from personal attack.
Archive tid: ah063d00 Offsite ($)
[Marvin M. Kristein], Response, Journal of Chronic Diseases 39/5 (1986,) 409.
Kristein’s lofty motives.
Archive tid: aho63d00 Offsite ($)
P. N. Lee, “40 years of US cigarette smoking and heart disease” M.M. Kristein
Kristein is out of his depth and has not refuted Burch.
Archive tid: mqm36a99

1985

Fag End

A Half-life of Burch

Richard Peto and Richard Doll, Keynote Address: The Control of Lung Cancer, in Merle Mizell and Pelayo Correa (eds.), Lung cancer : causes and prevention : proceedings of the International Lung Cancer Update Conference held in New Orleans, Louisiana … 1983 (Deerfield Beach, 1984).
The case against smoking restated together with a call for further restrictions on smoking.
Archive tid: jlx61b00
Richard Peto and Richard Doll, The control of lung cancer. New Scientist 105/1440 (24 January 1985), 26-30.
A popularised version of the Keynote Address.
Archive tid: nvk27a99 Offsite (free)
Frank Rogers, Fag End, New Scientist 105/1442 (7 February 1985), 48.
Various facts not accounted for by the Doll-Peto theory of lung cancer.
Archive tid: jok8aa00 Offsite (free)
Philip R. J. Burch, Fag End, New Scientist 105/1442 (7 February 1985), 48.
Doll and Peto ignore self-selection and the results of MRFIT.
Archive tid: jok8aa00 Offsite (free)
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 14 February 1985
Burch’s surprise at being published.
Archive tid: avk85a99

The World Cancer Burden

A Half-life of Burch

C. S. Muir and D. M. Parkin, The world cancer burden: prevent or perish, British Medical Journal 290/6461 (5 January 1985), 5-6.
80% to 90% of cancer is of environmental origin.
Not in archive Offsite (free)
Philip R. J. Burch, The world cancer burden, British Medical Journal 290/6469 (2 March 1985), 710.
Muir and Parkin ignore self-selection, MRFIT and Whitehall.
Archive tid: hok8aa00 Offsite (£)
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 6 March 1985
Burch’s surprise at being published in the BMJ. Neither Muir and Parkin nor Doll and Hill have risen to his challenge.
Archive tid: zuk85a99

Non-antipodean smoking view

A Half-life of Burch

Simon Chapman, Not biting the hand that feeds you, Tobacco advertising and editorial bias in Australian newspapers, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (14 April 1984), 480-2.
An analysis of press coverage of a proposed ban on tobacco advertising.
Archive tid: khl02d00
Allan Peachment, Learning from legislative disasters, The defeat of the Western Australian Government’s Tobacco (Promotion and Sales) Bill, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (14 April 1984), 482-5.
Some proposals to ensure success on a future occasion.
Archive tid: oer71d00
Alister Brass, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (14 April 1984), 469.
Editorial. Ridicule of the anti-smoking movement as part of political correctness.
Archive tid: loj43a99
Simon Chapman, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (26 May 1984), 682.
Quo vadis, Dr Brass?
Archive tid: ner71d00
R. L. Hodge, L. Simons, D. Shaw, J. G. Richards, T. Morgan, R. Goodwin and T. Baird, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (26 May 1984), 682.
Superficiality and insensitivity of Dr Brass.
Archive tid: ner71d00
John Shaw, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (26 May 1984), 682-3.
Shaw disappointed with Dr Brass.
Archive tid: ner71d00
K. J. Harvey, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (26 May 1984), 683.
Harvey saddened by Dr Brass.
Archive tid: ner71d00
Paul Magnus, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (26 May 1984), 683.
Magnus unable to see the joke.
Archive tid: ner71d00
John Donovan, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (26 May 1984), 683.
Dr Brass should have foreseen the consequences of his editorial.
Archive tid: ner71d00
Nigel Gray, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (26 May 1984), 683.
The blinkered view of Dr Brass.
Archive tid: ner71d00
W. M. Burch, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (26 May 1984), 683-4.
Thurberesque skills of Dr Brass.
Archive tid: ner71d00
A. D. Shrool, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (26 May 1984), 684.
Shrool strongly objects to Dr Brass.
Archive tid: ner71d00
A. Sauer, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (26 May 1984) ,684.
Sauer disgusted with Dr Brass.
Archive tid: ner71d00
[Alister Brass], In reply, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (26 May 1984), 684.
Brass was criticising the moralistic attitude of the extreme anti-smoking campaigners.
Archive tid: ner71d00
A. Zdenkowsi, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (9 June 1984) , 742.
The anti-smoking movement should not be ridiculed.
Archive tid: oer71d00
J. S. Wallace, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (9 June 1984), 742.
Public smoking infringes Wallace’s rights as an ex-smoker.
Archive tid: oer71d00
H. R. Elphick, K. Faulkner and A. W. Musk, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (9 June 1984), 742-3.
The unanimous opposition of the medical profession to smoking.
Archive tid: oer71d00
Gwyn Howells, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (9 June 1984), 743.
The profession has been stabbed in the back. Hopes for Brass’s resignation.
Archive tid: oer71d00
Peter Vogel, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (9 June 1984), 743.
Vogel demands evidence against the good effects of vandalising cigarette adverts.
Archive tid: oer71d00
Richard L. Heary, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (9 June 1984), 743.
Smokers have no right to be foolish.
Archive tid: oer71d00
F. K. Rickwood, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (9 June 1984), 743.
Support for Brass: smokers are treated like lepers.
Archive tid: oer71d00
Michael J. Farrell, Smoke gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (9 June 1984), 743.
From a cigar smoker: medicine is about presenting facts, not modifying behaviour.
Archive tid: oer71d00
George Repin, Smoke still gets in your eyes, The Medical Journal of Australia 140 (23 June 1984), 797.
The policy of the Australian Medical Association is to alter social attitudes to smoking.
Archive tid: lhl02d00
R. J. Epstein, Where there’s smoke, The Medical Journal of Australia 141 (7 July 1984), 66.
The ruthlessness and unscrupulousness of the press and the cigarette companies.
Archive tid: mhl02d00
Douglas Gordon, Where there’s smoke, The Medical Journal of Australia 141 (7 July 1984), 67.
The need for government-funded preventive medicine.
Archive tid: mhl02d00
Charles Watson, Where there’s smoke, The Medical Journal of Australia 141 (7 July 1984), 67.
Dr Brass trivialises the issue and hands ammunition to the tobacco companies.
Archive tid: mhl02d00
Philip Bell and A. D. Wodak, Where there’s smoke, The Medical Journal of Australia 141 (7 July 1984), 67-8.
The power of advertising and Dr Brass’s indulgence in name calling.
Archive tid: mhl02d00
Michael Copeman, Where there’s smoke, The Medical Journal of Australia 141 (7 July 1984), 68.
In support of Dr Brass.
Archive tid: mhl02d00
Calvin Miller, Medical journal editor stuns and angers health campaigners, New York State Journal of Medicine (July 1985), 432-4.
An account of the Brass affair.
Archive tid: tlh76a99
Philip R. J. Burch, Non-antipodean smoking view, The Medical Journal of Australia 142 (4 February 1985), 238-239.
The Whitehall and MRFIT studies circumvent self-selection and suggest that cigarettes do not cause lung cancer.
Archive tid: loh31e00
Konrad Jamrozik, Smoking and lung cancer, The Medical Journal of Australia 142 (1 April 1985), 428.
Three pieces of evidence for the causal role of cigarette smoking.
Not in archive
J. P. Pierce, Smoking and Burch, The Medical Journal of Australia 142, (13 May 1985), 578-9.
Lilienfeld exposed Burch’s flawed science. Two facts from Whitehall and MRFIT which he has ignored.
Archive tid: tbh94f00
Carl C. Seltzer, Smoking and Burch, The Medical Journal of Australia 143 (19 August 1985), 176.
Pierce’s facts about CHD drawn from Whitehall and MRFIT are not statistically significant.
Archive tid: ubh94f00
J. R. Johnstone, Smoking and Burch, The Medical Journal of Australia 143 (19 August 1985), 176.
Pierce’s facts about lung cancer drawn from Whitehall and MRFIT are not statistically significant.
Archive tid: ubh94f00
Philip R. J. Burch, Smoking: association with disease, The Medical Journal of Australia 143 (30 September 1985), 318.
Pierce assumes that correlation is causation and he neglects to point out the facts which proved intervention to have failed in both studies.
Archive tid: wbx61f00
John P. Pierce, Smoking and Burch, revisited, The Medical Journal of Australia 143 (14 October 1985), 369.
Reasons for the anomalous results of Whitehall and MRFIT.
Archive tid: wbh94f00
Philip R. J. Burch, Smoking, disease and the admissibility of evidence, The Medical Journal of Australia 144 (14 April 1986), 446-447.
Pierce misrepresents Burch and now appeals to the results given by Whitehall and MRFIT if randomisation is ignored.
Archive tid: xbh94f00
John P. Pierce, Smoking, disease and the admissibility of evidence, The Medical Journal of Australia 144 (14 April 1986), 446-447.
Kristein’s opinion of Burch repeated. Burch’s criteria of evidence impossibly stringent.
Archive tid: xbh94f00
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 7 May 1985
Burch’s letter to the Medical Journal of Australia enclosed.
Archive tid: ovn34a99
More about Chapman and the Australian anti-smoking movement from J. R. Johnstone.
Not in archive Offsite

Oesophageal Cancer

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Esophageal cancer in relation to cigarette and alcohol consumption, Journal of Chronic Diseases 37/11 (1984), 793-808.
A major paper applying Burch’s approach to epidemiology to oesophageal cancer.
Archive tid: rkm07a99 Offsite ($)
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 7 January 1985
The paper enclosed.
Archive tid: dvk85a99
P. N. Lee, “Esophageal cancer in relation to cigarette and alcohol consumption” P. R. J. Burch
There are weaknesses in Burch’s case but the association of alcohol with cancer is not strong.
Archive tid: aiu36a99

Scientifically speaking

A Half-life of Burch

Mat Coward, Langham Diary, The Listener (18 April 1985), 19.
Ridicule of new smoking restrictions in hospitals. Doctors are far too certain about the dangers of smoking.
Not in archive
M. P. Haggard, Scientifically speaking, The Listener (9 May 1985)
Cowards’s levity is misplaced: the dangers of smoking are beyond dispute.
Not in archive
P. R. J. Burch, Scientifically speaking, The Listener (30 May 1985), 27.
Coward is right. The dangers of smoking are not borne out by Whitehall and MRFIT.
Not in archive
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 6 June 1985
The Coward correspondence forwarded.
Archive tid: vjm07a99

Heart of the matter

A Half-life of Burch

James LeFanu, Doctors battle for the nation’s heart, The Times 62257 (1 October 1985), 16.
A sceptical newspaper item on the NACNE report.
Not in archive
Philip R. J. Burch, Heart of the matter. The Times 62265 (10 October 1985) 15
LeFanu’s scepticism is justified.
Archive tid: wmz07a99

Endometrial cancer

A Half-life of Burch

Samuel M. Lesko, Lynn Rosenberg, David W. Kaufman, Susan P. Helmrich, Donald R. Miller, Brian Strom, David Schottenfeld, Neil B. Rosenshein, Robert C. Knapp, John Lewis and Samuel Shapiro, Cigarette smoking and the risk of endometrial cancer, New England Journal of Medicine, 313/10 (5 September 1985), 393-6.
A study showing that postmenopausal women who smoke heavily have a lower risk of endometrial cancer.
Archive tid: ynh76a99 Offsite ($)
Noel S. Weiss, Can not smoking be hazardous to your health? New England Journal of Medicine 313/10 (5 September 1985), 632-3.
Smoking by postmenopausal women would cause more deaths than it prevented.
Archive tid: kkx68e00 Offsite ($)
Gunnar R. Nordenstam, Cigarette smoking and endometrial cancer, New England Journal of Medicine 315 /10 (4 September 1986), 645.
Problems with Lesko’s choice of control group.
Archive Offsite ($) tid: nqe04d00
Philip R. J. Burch, Cigarette smoking and endometrial cancer, New England Journal of Medicine 315/10 (4 September 1986), 645.
Negative correlation is not protection any more than positive correlation is causation.
Archive tid: ynh76a99 Offsite ($)
Harriet H. Imrey, Cigarette smoking and endometrial cancer, New England Journal of Medicine 315 /10 (4 September 1986), 645-6.
Problems with Lesko’s choice of control group.
Archive tid: nqe04d00 Offsite ($)
Bret A. Lashner, Stephen B. Hanauer and Marc D. Silverstein, Cigarette smoking and endometrial cancer, New England Journal of Medicine 315/10 (4 September 1986), 645-6.
Problems with Lesko’s choice of control group.
Archive tid: nqe04d00 Offsite ($)
R. T. Ravenholt, Cigarette smoking and endometrial cancer, New England Journal of Medicine 315/10 (4 September 1986), 646.
Problems with the case-control method.
Archive tid: nqe04d00 Offsite ($)
Samuel M. Lesko, Lynn Rosenberg, David W. Kaufman and Samuel Shapiro, Cigarette smoking and endometrial cancer, New England Journal of Medicine 315/10 (4 September 1986), 646.
The choice of controls defended. Reasons to reject Burch’s constitutional hypothesis.
Archive tid: nqe04d00 Offsite ($)

Meeting with Sheehy

A Half-life of Burch

“by the slow route”
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 21 March 1985
Archive tid: xkm07a99
“off to Italy”
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 25 June 1985
Archive tid: sjm07a99
“Scotland”
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 9 September 1985
Archive tid: ljm07a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 18 April 1985
Request for comments on the compendium. Arrangements for Sheehy’s visit.
Archive tid: skm07a99
R. E. Thornton, Itinerary for visit of Mr. P. Sheehy and Mr. E. A. A. Bruell to Leeds on Wednesday, 24 April, 1985
Travel arrangements.
Archive tid: itb50a99
R. E. Thornton, Note for Mr. E.A.A. Bruell, visits to outside organisations
Travel arrangements.
Archive tid: gee66a99
R. E. Thornton, Aide-memoire, Professor P. R. J. Burch
A thumbnail sketch of Burch.
Archive tid: dtb50a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 9 May 1985
A critique of the compendium.
Archive tid: ikm07a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 12 June 1985
A request to return the compendium.
Archive tid: ouk85a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 13 June 1985
Return of the compendium.
Archive tid: nuk85a99

Kronebusch

A Half-life of Burch

The Health Program, Office of Technology Assessment, U.S. Congress, Smoking-related deaths and financial costs.
An American government report on the alleged financial costs of smoking.
Archive tid: rlu42e00
Philip Burch to Karl Kronebusch, 29 May 1985
Scathing criticisms of the report.
Archive tid: bkm07a99
Irvin Molotsky, Smokers’ ills cost billions, U.S. says, New York Times, 16 September 1985 A13.
A journalistic summary of the report.
Archive tid: ncz46e00
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 8 October 1985
Thanks for a press clipping of Molotsky.
Archive tid: lwp07c00
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 30 October 1985
Burch has received a copy of the report and fired off a “testy” reply.
Archive tid: hrk8aa00
Philip Burch to Karl Kronebusch, 30 October 1985
Further criticism of the report.
Archive tid: irk8aa00
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 22 November 1985
Another copy of the report has arrived.
Archive tid: nvp07c00
Philip Burch to Judith Wagner, 22 November 1985
More criticism of the report.
Archive tid: krk8aa00

Part 6: Passive Smoking

Sandler on passive smoking

A Half-life of Burch

Dale P. Sandler, Richard B. Everson and Allen J. Wilcox, Passive smoking in adulthood and cancer risk, American Journal of Epidemiology 121/1 (1985), 37-48.
A study of cancer patients shows a higher level of risk in the spouses of smokers.
Archive tid: cbh16a99 Offsite ($)
Gary D. Friedman, Passive smoking in adulthood and cancer risk, American Journal of Epidemiology 123/2 (1986), 367.
Sandler should have considered more confounding factors.
Archive tid: lyb02a00 Offsite (broken link)
Nathan Mantel, Passive smoking in adulthood and cancer risk, American Journal of Epidemiology 123/12 (1986), 367-8.
Sandler should have identified his subjects as smokers or non-smokers at the start of the study.
Archive tid: lyb02a00 Offsite (broken link)
Philip R. J. Burch, Passive smoking in adulthood and cancer risk, American Journal of Epidemiology 123/12 (1986), 368-9.
Sandler ignores workplace smoking and assortive mating. His study identifies no dose-response relationship.
Archive tid: lyb02a00 Offsite ($)
Dale P. Sandler, Richard B. Everson and Allen J. Wilcox, The authors reply, American Journal of Epidemiology 123/12 (1986), 369-70.
The conclusions of the paper remain plausible in the light of the above criticisms.
Archive tid: lyb02a00 Offsite ($)
Dale P. Sandler, Allen J. Wilcox and Richard B. Everson, Cumulative effects of lifetime passive smoking on cancer risk, The Lancet 325/8424 (9 February 1985), 312-4.
Risk of lung cancer appears to increase in proportion to the number of smokers subjects had lived with.
Archive tid: cev46a99 Offsite (£)
Philip R. J. Burch, Lifetime passive smoking and cancer risk, The Lancet 325/8433 (13 April 1985), 866.
An amusing mathematical consequence of Sandler’s model.
Archive tid: aoc02a00 Offsite (£)
Ian Higgins, Lifetime passive smoking and cancer risk, The Lancet 325/8433 (13 April 1985), 866.
Problems with the data used in the study
Archive tid: aoc02a00 Offsite (£)
D. P. Sandler, A. J. Wilcox and R. B. Everson, Lifetime passive smoking and cancer risk, The Lancet 325/8433 (13 April 1985), 866.
Burch does not distinguish between childhood and adult exposure to smoke. The doubts of Higgins countered.
Archive tid: aoc02a00 Offsite (£)
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 21 March 1985
The letter enclosed. Burch is “partial” to his amusing point.
Archive tid: xkm07a99

1986

Repace and Lowrey

A Half-life of Burch

J. L. Repace and A. H. Lowrey, A quantitative estimate of nonsmokers’ lung cancer risk from passive smoking, Environment International 11/1 (1985), 3-22.
A calculation of the risks of passive smoking.
Archive tid: zml19a00 Offsite ($)
P. R. J. Burch, Health risks of passive smoking: problems of interpretation, Environment International 12/1-4 (1986), 23-28.
Repace and Lowrey’s shaky reasoning.
Archive tid: ezu23e00 Offsite ($)

Lee leaked

A Half-life of Burch

Olivia Timbs and Lorraine Fraser, Passive smoking: no significant danger, The Times 62488 (20 June 1986), 11.
News item on a forthcoming study of passive smoking.
Archive tid: iso40c00
Thomson Prentice. Cancer linked to ‘passive smoking’ says senior scientist, The Times 62492 (25 June 1986), 5.
News item on a speech by Sir Richard Doll.
Not in archive
Robin Weiss and Julian Peto
Disputed risk of passive smoking. The Times 62501 (5 July 1986), 7.
The Times misunderstands the significance of the forthcoming study.
Not in archive
P. N. Lee, J. Chamberlain and M. R. Alderson, Relationship of passive smoking to risk of lung cancer and other smoking-associated diseases, British Journal of Cancer 54/1 (July 1986), 97-105.
A study showing no significant risk of lung cancer from a spouse’s smoking.
Archive tid: abc71d00 Offsite (£)
Robin Weiss to Michael Brown MP, 18 July 1986
The Early Day motion is inaccurate and should be withdrawn.
Archive tid: ole32e00
Michael Brown MP to Robin Weiss, 25 July 1986
The motion is well-founded and Brown has no intention of obliging.
Archive tid: ple32e00
Ray Thornton to Brian Simpson, 1 August 1986
Simpson was unwise to use the leak at the point when he did.
Archive tid: wwh00a99
Peter Lee, Draft letter to The Times, 9 July 1986
Weiss and Peto make misleading reference to an alleged dose-response relationship for which there is no evidence.
Archive tid: lgg66a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 18 July 1986
Plans for another meeting with Sheehy. Draft of Lee’s paper enclosed.
Archive tid: qoq40a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 30 July 1986
The Sheehy meeting and a holiday in Spain. Who leaked Lee?
Archive tid: auk85a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 28 August 1986
The source of the leak unknown. Another confidential draft of Lee’s next paper.
Archive tid: ytk85a99

Thornton in Canada

A Half-life of Burch

Ray Thornton, Visit to Professor T. D. Sterling Vancouver, B.C. – August 11th, 1986
Sterling is a conceited but entertaining character who charges money for his opinions.
Archive tid: szd66a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 28 August 1986
Thornton will have some Ted Sterling anecdotes for Burch when they meet.
Archive tid: ytk85a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 5 September 1986
Burch enjoys Sterling’s company although they seldom agree.
Archive tid: xtk85a99

Lee purged

A Half-life of Burch

J. Peto and R. Doll, Passive smoking, British Journal of Cancer 54/3 (September 1986), 381-3.
A guest editorial denouncing the Times report and disputing Lee’s conclusions.
Archive tid: tnj70g00 Offsite (£)
Peter Lee to Julian Peto, 27 August 1986
Lee feels that the guest editorial misrepresents him and would like a discussion of the matter.
Archive tid: mej66a99
Ray Thornton to Philip Burch, 28 August 1986
A confidential draft of Lee’s next paper enclosed.
Archive tid: ytk85a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 5 September 1986
Comments on Lee’s draft paper.
Archive tid: xtk85a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 7 October 1986
Burch is enjoying the affair and looking forward to the next phase.
Archive tid: wim07a9/.
P. N. Lee, Passive smoking. British Journal of Cancer 54/6 (December 1986), 1019-20.
The guest editorial misrepresents Lee’s study.
Archive tid: fqw42d00 Offsite (£)
J. Peto and R. Doll, Passive smoking. British Journal of Cancer 54/6 (December 1986), 1020-1.
The guest editorial concerned misrepresentations in The Times.
Archive tid: fqw42d00 Offsite (£)
R. E. Thornton, Note for Mr. P. Sheehy, Chairman, BAT Industries. Passive Smoking.
A condensed timeline of the affair so far.
Archive tid: cqj00a99
Nicholas Wald to Peter Lee, 3 November 1986
Wald’s paper, including a rebuttal of Lee’s work shown him in confidence, is about to be published.
Archive tid: vtc00a99
Peter Lee to Richard Smith, 5 November 1986
Lee’s paper submitted: the urgency of publishing it.
Archive tid: ktc00a99
Philip Burch to Peter Lee, 13 November 1986
A draft paper enclosed. Lee must reply to Peto.
Archive tid: xaq62a99
Peter Lee to Philip Burch, 20 November 1986
Lee is discovering the difficulty of publishing non-establishment views.
Archive tid: xaq62a99
Philip Burch to Peter Lee, 26 November 1986
The BMJ has treated Lee outrageously but he must persevere.
Archive tid: waq62a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 7 October 1986
Burch is enjoying the affair immensely.
Archive tid: wim07a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 19 December 1986
Burch pleased to see Lee given space in the BMJ.
Archive tid: klg42a99
Philip Burch to Peter Lee, 6 January 1987
Advice on getting the paper into print.
Archive tid: zuw82a99
Michael Moore to Peter Lee, 17 October 1986
Lee’s submission to the British Journal of Cancer has been received.
Archive tid: qtc00a99
Nicholas J. Wald, Kiran Nanchahal, Simon G. Thompson and Howard S. Cuckle, Does breathing other people’s tobacco smoke cause lung cancer? British Medical Journal 293/6556 (8 November 1986), 1217-1222.
A reanalysis of existing studies shows the harmfulness of passive smoking.
Archive tid: eyo34e00 Offsite (free)
P. Sherwood Burge and A. S. Robertson, Does breathing other people’s tobacco smoke cause lung cancer? British Medical Journal 293/6560 (6 December 1986), 1503.
Passive smoking in the workplace outweighs spouses’ smoking.
Archive tid: pvx23e00 Offsite (£)
Philip R. J. Burch, Does breathing other people’s tobacco smoke cause lung cancer? British Medical Journal 293/6560 (6 December 1986), 1503.
Whitehall and MRFIT show that correlation is not causation.
Archive tid: pvx23e00 Offsite (£)
Peter N. Lee, Does breathing other people’s tobacco smoke cause lung cancer? British Medical Journal 293/6560 (6 December 1986), 1503-4.
A concise presentation of some further findings on passive smoking.
Archive tid: pvx23e00 Offsite (£)
P. N. Lee, Passive smoking and lung cancer association: a result of bias? Human Toxicology 6 (1987), 517-524.
The further findings in full.
Archive tid: tia87a99 Offsite ($)

Part 7: Last Words

Tribute to Eysenck

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch, Smoking and health, in S. Modgil and C. Modgil (eds.), Hans Eysenck, Consensus and Controversy (Philadelphia and London 1986), 317-334 and 336-337.
Popperian scientists including Eysenck and Burch have rejected the causal interpretation of smoking and lung cancer.
Not in archive
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 30 July 1986
Burch recommends the Modgil book.
Archive tid: auk85a99

Resolution of the American Society for Cancer Research

A Half-life of Burch

Lawrence A. Loeb, Virginia L. Ernster, Kenneth E. Warner, John Abbotts and John Laszlo, Smoking and lung cancer: an overview, Cancer Research 44/12/1 (December 1984), 5940-5958.
Smoking identified as the main cause of lung cancer. A resolution of the American Association for Cancer Research on the need for drastic action.
Archive tid: wvl43f00 Offsite (free)
Philip R. J. Burch, Correspondence re: Laurence A Loeb et al, Smoking and Lung Cancer – An Overiew. Cancer Research, 46/6 (June 1986), 3200-3201.
On MRFIT, Whitehall and some anomalies in Loeb’s data.
Archive tid: gqk8aa00 Offsite (free)
J. Abbotts and L. A. Loeb, Reply 1, Cancer Research 46/6 (June 1986), 3201-2.
MRFIT shows the dangers of smoking if the randomisation is ignored.
Archive tid: gqk8aa00 Offsite (free)
V. L. Ernster, Reply 2, Cancer Research 46/6 (June 1986), 3202-3.
MRFIT shows the dangers of smoking if the randomisation is ignored.
Archive tid: gqk8aa00 Offsite (free)
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 30 October 1985
A pity that Hickey’s submission was not accepted. The politicisation of science.
Archive tid: hrk8aa00
Philip Burch to Richard Hickey, 5 March 1986
Caustic comment on the replies to his letter.
Archive tid: ewp07c00

The Ghost of Yerushalmy

A Half-life of Burch

J.W. Donovan, Randomised controlled trial of anti-smoking advice in pregnancy, British Journal of Preventive and Social Medicine 31/1 (March 1977), 6-12.
A randomised, controlled trial fails to show any effect from smoking in pregnancy.
Archive tid: ngk72f00 Offsite (free)
Harvey Goldstein, Smoking in pregnancy: some notes on the statistical controversy, British Journal of Preventive and Social Medicine 1977 31/1 (March 1977), 13-17.
Arguments in favour of the causal hypothesis.
Archive coa05c00 Offsite (free)
Mary Sexton and J. Richard Hebel, A clinical trial of change in maternal smoking and its effect on birth weight, Journal of the American Medical Association 251/7 (17 February 1984), 911-5.
A randomised, controlled, prospective trial shows some effect from smoking in pregnancy.
Archive tid: cwg66a00 Offsite ($)
Richard H. Aubry, Maternal smoking and perinatal health, Journal of the American Medical Association 251/7 (17 February 1984), 935.
Sexton and Hebel have demonstrated the harmful effects of smoking in pregnancy.
Archive tid: cwg66a00 Offsite ($)
Stuart M. Berman, Carol J. R. Hogue and James S. Marks, Maternal cigarette smoking: effect on infant birth weight, Journal of the American Medical Association 253/10 (8 March 1985), 1391-2.
Some issues to be resolved before Yerushalmy’s genetic hypothesis is refuted.
Archive tid: uox62f00 Offsite ($)
Mary Sexton and J. Richard Hebel, In Reply, Journal of the American Medical Association 253/10 (8 March 1985), 1392.
A discussion of the above issues.
Archive tid: uox62f00 Offsite ($)
Philip R. J. Burch and M. Susan Chesters, Maternal cigarette smoking and the ghost of Yerushalmy – will it ever rest? Journal of the American Medical Association 255/8 (28 February 1986), 1019.
Reasons to question the conclusions of the Sexton study.
Archive tid: iqk8aa00 Offsite ($)
Mary Sexton and J. Richard Hebel, In Reply. Journal of the American Medical Association 255/8 (28 February 1986), 1019.
A consideration of the above reasons.
Archive tid: iqk8aa00 Offsite ($)

Period and cohort trends in mortality from cancers of the uterus

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Period and cohort trends in mortality from cancers of the uterus in England and Wales. A new theory of changing gene frequencies, Medical Hypotheses 20/1 (May 1986), 53-63.
Changing rates of cancer of the uterus analysed by age and generation reveal changing gene frequencies in the population.
Not in archive Offsite (£)

National trends in mortality from ischaemic heart disease: implications for prevention

A Half-life of Burch

Thomas J. Thom, Frederick H. Epstein, Jacob J. Feldman and Paul E. Leaverton, Trends in total mortality and mortality from heart disease in different countries, International Journal of Epidemiology 14/4 (1985), 510-520.
A report on rates of heart disease in men and women in 26 countries.
Not in archive
A. G. Shaper, National trends in mortality from ischaemic heart disease: implications for prevention, The Lancet 327/8484 (5 April 1986), 795.
Thom’s paper shows the need for draconian action against smoking and cholesterol.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
Alexander MacNair, National trends in mortality from ischaemic heart disease: implications for prevention, The Lancet 327/8487 (26 April 1986), 981-2.
Shaper ignores the most salient feature of Thom’s data.
Archive tid: ryc36a99 Offsite (£)
M. F. Oliver, National trends in mortality from ischaemic heart disease: implications for prevention, The Lancet 327/8487 (26 April 1986), 981-2.
Shaper ignores the most salient feature of Thom’s data.
Archive tid: ryc36a99 Offsite (£)
Philip R. J. Burch, National trends in mortality from ischaemic heart disease: implications for prevention, The Lancet 327/8140 (17 May 1986), 1155.
Shaper mistakes the diagnostic categories used in Thom’s paper.
Archive tid: cvz26a99 Offsite (£)

The Big Kill

A Half-life of Burch

John L. Roberts and Paul A. Graveling, The Big Kill: Smoking Epidemic in England and Wales (Manchester, 1985).
The alleged death toll from smoking in England and Wales broken down by locality.
Archive tid: hjv97h99
Philip R. J. Burch, Can epidemiology become a rigorous science? How big is the Big Kill? IRCS Medical Science 14 (1986), 956-961.
The absurd precision of the death toll specified in the study demonstrates the weakness of risk factor epidemiology.
Archive tid: luz50f00
P. N. Lee, “Can epidemiology become a rigorous science? How big is the Big Kill?” Some comments on the paper by Philip Burch
Archive tid: xuw82a99
Philip Burch to Peter Lee, 6 January 1987
Burch’s reply to Lee’s comments.
Archive tid: zuw82a99

Approach to Nigel Lawson

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Nigel Lawson, 6 November 1986
A suggested spending cut: axe the Health Education Council. An offprint of Burch’s Big Kill paper enclosed.
Archive tid: jgl71a99
Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 19 December 1986
The Health Education Council really has been axed.
Archive tid: klg42a99
K. James to Philip Burch, 4 February 1987
An official defence of The Big Kill.
Archive tid: kgl71a99
Philip Burch to K. James, 12 February 1987
Reply to James’s arguments.
Archive tid: lgl71a99
Philip Burch to Nigel Lawson, 13 February 1987
The James correspondence forwarded.
Archive tid: igl71a99
Peter Lee to Philip Burch, 20 November 1986
Lee partly agrees with Burch on The Big Kill, partly not.
Archive tid: xaq62a99
Philip Burch to Peter Lee, 26 November 1986
Informed criticism is more than welcome.
Archive tid: waq62a99

1987

Whither preventive medicine?

A Half-life of Burch

Philip R. J. Burch, Whither preventive medicine? Journal of Chronic Diseases 40/7 (1987), 737-739.
Deficiencies of risk-factor epidemiology and the preventive medicine based on it.
Not in archive Offsite ($)

Period and cohort trends for mortality and cigarette consumption

A Half-life of Burch

P. R. J. Burch, Period and cohort trends for mortality and cigarette consumption in England and Wales, 1946 to 1980, with emphasis on sex ratios, Journal of Clinical Epidemiology 41/4 (1988), 373-384.
The last of the major papers on lung cancer.
Archive tid: qpb50a99 Offsite ($)
P. N. Lee, “Period and cohort trends for mortality and cigarette consumption in England and Wales, 1946 to 1980, with emphasis on sex ratios” P. R. J. Burch
Burch successfully shows that the contribution of smoking to the overall death rate is less than generally supposed.
Archive tid: mnz35a99

Illness and death

A Half-life of Burch

Philip Burch to Ray Thornton, 25 February 1987
James has fallen silent. Burch is to have a cancer operation but is optimistic about his chances.
Archive tid: clg42a99
Jane Burch to Ray Thornton, 25 March 1987
Burch did not recover from the operation and has now died.
Archive tid: vmb08h99

Afterwards

Jane Burch

A Half-life of Burch

Obituary: Jane Burch
Not in archive Offsite

The selected papers

A Half-life of Burch

Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 16 July 1987
Archive tid: mkg42a99
R. E. Thornton, Note on a visit to Mrs J Burch, Leeds – August 13 1987
Archive tid: tpb50a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 18 August 1987
Archive tid: jkg42a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 23 September 1987
Archive tid: fkg42a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 6 October 1987
Archive tid: ekg42a99
Jane Burch to Ray Thornton, 13 October 1987
Archive tid: dkg42a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 19 October 1987
Archive tid: ckg42a99
Jane Burch to Ray Thornton, 14 December 1987
Archive tid: akg42a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 18 December 1987
Archive tid: wjg42a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 11 February 1988
Archive tid: pjg42a99
Ray Thornton to Eric Bruell, 25 February 1988
Archive tid: qjg42a99
Jane Burch to Ray Thornton, 4 April 1988
Archive tid: mjg42a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 19 September 1988
Archive tid: njg42a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 12 October 1988
Archive tid: ljg42a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 31 January 1989
Archive tid: bjg42a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 3 April 1989
Archive tid: xig42a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 9 May 1989
Archive tid: wig42a99
Jane Burch to Ray Thornton, 14 July 1989
Archive tid: sig42a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 26 July 1989
Archive tid: rig42a99
Ray Thornton to B. D. Bramley, 6 October 1989
Archive tid: nig42a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 3 January 1990
Archive tid: hig42a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 24 January 1990
Archive tid: zhg42a99
Jane Burch to Ray Thornton, 14 July 1992
Archive tid: mgr52a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 20 July 1992
Archive tid: lgr52a99
Ray Thornton to Jane Burch, 13 October 1992
Archive tid: lkn00a99

Lawfare

Kenneth MacRae

A Half-life of Burch

Kenneth David MacRae, British Medical Journal 324/7344 (27 April 2002), 1041.
Not in archive Offsite (£)
K. D. MacRae, What epidemiological studies can tell us, Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 4 Suppl 2 (1984), 579-587.
Archive tid: gkv18c00 Offsite (£)
Kenneth Duncan MacRae, Statement of Kenneth Duncan Macrae, M.A., Ph. D. (Aberd.), F.I.S, 20 May 1991
Archive tid: ajt19e00
Curriculum Vitae, Kenneth Duncan Macrae, M.A., Ph. D. (Aberd.), F.I.S
Archive tid: bjt19e00

McTear

Sir Richard Doll at the close of his system

A Half-life of Burch

Opinion of Lord Nimmo Smith in the cause Mrs Margaret McTear pursuer against Imperial Tobacco Limited defenders
Not in archive Offsite

The Essence of Burch

Burch on Cancer is mainly based on The Biology of Cancer and Pathology, inference and carcinogenesis. Burch on Lung Cancer is based on chapter 9 of The Biology of Cancer and the many other expositions of his ideas listed below. Burch on Heart Disease is based on his two papers Coronary Heart Disease: Risk Factors and Ageing (published in Epidemiology) and Ischaemic heart disease: epidemiology, risk factors and cause (published in Cardiovascular Research). Burch on Doll is mainly based on Burch’s reply to Joy Townsend at the Royal Statistical Society in Smoking and Lung Cancer: the Problem of Inferring Cause. The mathematical expression showing Doll’s power law to be an approximation to a Weibull distribution is in Pike and Doll, Age at Onset of Lung Cancer.

Appendices

Sir Richard Doll in context

Conrad Keating, Smoking Kills (Oxford, 2009).

Joan Fisher Box, R. A. Fisher, the life of a scientist (New York, 1978).

W. D. Hamilton on smoking

W. D. Hamilton, Narrow Roads of Geneland, The Collected Papers of W. D. Hamilton volume 2 Evolution of Sex (Oxford 2001), 103-7 and 337

General

Autoaggressive disease

P. R. J. Burch, What limits the lifespan? in B. Benjamin, P.R. Cox and J. Peel (eds.) Population and the New Biology (London and New York, 1974), 31-56.
The main barrier to longer lifespans is now degenerative and malignant disease, and victory is not assured.
Archive tid: rqk30g00
Philip R. J. Burch, Pathology, inference and carcinogenesis, in S C Sommers and P P Rosen (eds.), Pathology Annual 15/2 (New York, 1980), 21-44.
An exposition of Burch’s general theory of autoaggressive disease for a medical readership.
Archive tid: hdl59d00

Lung cancer

Accessible

New Scientist exchange

Philip Burch, Does Smoking cause lung cancer? New Scientist 61/886 (21 February 1974), 458-63.
Burch’s case expounded for a general audience.
Archive tid: yze32a99 Offsite (free)
Richard Doll, Smoking, lung cancer and Occam’s razor, New Scientist 61/886 (21 February 1974), 463-7.
Five points in Burch’s argument disputed and orthodoxy restated.
Archive tid: yml94f00 Offsite (free)
Philip Burch, Smoking and lung cancer: Burch’s reply, New Scientist 61/887 (28 February 1974), 559-560.
The five points considered and Doll’s arguments rejected.
Archive tid: qau88e00 Offsite (free)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and lung cancer: a causal connexion? in Verband der Zigarettenindustrie (ed.), Rauchen im wissenschaftlichen Meinungsstreit. Internationales Symposion, April 29-30 1976 (Ruschlikon/Zurich, 1977)
The text of a conference paper delivered in Zurich in 1976. A very accessible account of Burch’s ideas on smoking and lung cancer.
Archive tid: vua66b00

Technical

(Extracts)

P. R. J. Burch, The Biology of Cancer: A New Approach (Lancaster, 1976)
Burch’s general theory of cancer as autoaggressive disease.
tid: msd91f00 Archive
P. R. J. Burch, Lung cancer and cigarette smoking, secular trends.
Draft of a paper to be offered to Nature.
Archive tid: znz88b00
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and lung cancer: the problem of inferring cause (with discussion). Journal of the Royal Statistical Society A 141 (1978), 437-477.
A major paper on smoking and lung cancer read to the Royal Statistical Society with the subsequent discussion.
Archive tid: aal39d00
P. R. J. Burch, Problems in the interpretation of cancer statistics with special reference to lung cancer, Journal of the Society of Occupational Medicine 25 (1975), 2-10.
Burch’s first presentation of his ideas in a scientific journal.
Archive tid: wgz88b00 Offsite (£)

Lancet exchange

Precipitator

P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and lung cancer: tests of a causal hypothesis, Journal of Chronic Diseases 33/4 (1980), 221-238.
The first of the papers on the Precipitator hypothesis about smoking and lung cancer.
Archive tid: xof50d00 Offsite ($)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and mortality in England and Wales 1950 to 1976, Journal of Chronic Diseases 34/2-3 (1981), 87-103.
The second of the major papers on the Precipitator hypothesis
Archive tid: iuw2aa00 Offsite ($)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking, lung cancer and hypothesis testing, Medical Hypotheses 7/12 (December 1981), 1461-1470.
The third of Burch’s major papers on the Precipitator hypothesis.
Archive tid: vbg65b00 Offsite (£)
P. R. J. Burch, Period and cohort trends for mortality and cigarette consumption in England and Wales, 1946 to 1980, with emphasis on sex ratios, Journal of Clinical Epidemiology 41/4 (1988), 373-384.
The last of the major papers on lung cancer.
Archive tid: qpb50a99 Offsite ($)

Polemical

The Lilienfeld exchange

P. R. J. Burch, The Surgeon General’s “epidemiologic criteria for causality”. A critique, Journal of Chronic Diseases 36/12 (1983), 821-836.
The Surgeon General’s report appeal to five criteria for establishing the causal role of smoking in disease. They are poor scientific methodology and do not prove what is claimed.
Archive tid: hms61f00 Offsite ($)
Abraham M. Lilienfeld, The Surgeon General’s “epidemiologic criteria for causality”: a criticism of Burch’s critique, Journal of Chronic Diseases 36/12 (1983), 837-845.
A defence of the five criteria and the Surgeon General’s conclusions.
Archive tid: lyh05c00 Offsite ($)
P. R. J. Burch, The Surgeon General’s “epidemiologic criteria for causality”. Reply to Lilienfeld, Journal of Chronic Diseases 37/2 (1984), 148-156.
The case against the Surgeon General’s methodology restated.
Archive tid: gms61f00 Offsite ($)
Arnold E. Reif, Effect of cigarette smoking on susceptibility to lung cancer, Oncology 38/2 (1981), 76-85.
Arguments against the constitutional hypotheses of Fisher and Burch. A hypothetical mechanism whereby smoking causes lung cancer.
Archive tid: whz92f00 Offsite ($)
P. R. J. Burch, Cigarette smoking and lung cancer: a continuing controversy, Medical Hypotheses 9/3 (September 1982), 293-306.
Reif’s facts do not prove what he wants them to. The constitutional hypothesis still stands.
Archive tid: dzb43f00 Offsite (£)

Unpublished

H. Goldstein and K. Horsfield, Appendix to chapter 4 The statistical controversy on the relation between smoking and lung cancer
Draft of a critique of Burch proposed for inclusion in the report.
Archive tid: gbp72a99
P. R. J. Burch, Criticisms by P. R. J. Burch of the second draft of appendix to chapter 4 by H. Goldstein and K. Horsfield
Burch’s reply to the critique.
Archive tid: ajb45d00
Submission to the Hunter Committee
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and cancer, criticisms by Professor P. R. J. Burch of the Hunter Committee report to the Minister of State (Health)
Rebuttal of a report rejecting Burch’s views.
Archive tid: ljb45d00
Comments on the OTA report
The Health Program, Office of Technology Assessment, U.S. Congress, Smoking-related deaths and financial costs.
An American government report on the alleged financial costs of smoking.
tid: rlu42e00 Archive
Philip Burch to Karl Kronebusch, 29 May 1985
Scathing criticisms of the report.
Archive tid: bkm07a99
P. R. J. Burch, The analysis of cancer statistics with special reference to cigarette smoking and lung cancer. Non-mathematical synopsis.
A summary of Burch’s views written for Todd and Roe.
Archive tid: mlg42a99
Fletcher exchange
Philip Burch to Charles Fletcher, 29 June 1976
Discussion of the draft report.
Archive tid: fov32d00
Charles Fletcher to Philip Burch, 6 July 1976
Discussion of the draft report.
tid: zib45d00 Archive
Philip Burch to Charles Fletcher, 19 July 1976
Further discussion of the draft report.
Archive tid: bey38e00
Charles Fletcher to Philip Burch, 30 July 1976
Further discussion of the draft report.
Archive tid: wib45d00
Philip Burch to Charles Fletcher, 5 August 1976
Further discussion of the draft report.
Archive tid: xib45d00
Charles Fletcher to Philip Burch, 15 September 1976
Further discussion of the draft report. Fletcher’s impatience with Burch.
Archive tid: qib45d00
Philip Burch to Charles Fletcher, 29 September 1976
Burch’s determination to subject the causal theory to the falsificationist method.
Archive tid: rib45d00

Coronary heart disease

Coronary heart disease
Philip R. J.Burch, Coronary heart disease. Tests of etiological hypotheses, American Heart Journal 93/6 (June 1977), 805-806.
Is the association of smoking with coronary heart disease a causal one? Some possible tests.
Archive tid: kdb62f00 Offsite ($)
P. R. J Burch, Coronary heart disease: risk factors and ageing, Gerontology 24 (1978), 123-155.
The first of Burch’s two major papers on coronary heart disease.
Archive tid: kie20a00 Offsite ($)
Philip R. J. Burch, Ischaemic heart disease: epidemiology, risk factors and cause, Cardiovascular Research 14/6 (1 June 1980), 307-338.
The second of the major papers on ischaemic (coronary) heart disease.
Archive tid: hkw02i00 Offsite ($)
P. R. J. Burch, Smoking and coronary disease, American Heart Journal 100/4 (October 1980), 421-423.
Editorial on the role of randomised prospective studies and twins studies in investigating causation.
Archive tid: ngz88b00 Offsite (free)
Exchange with Tweed
W.A. Tweed, Does cigarette smoking cause coronary heart disease? Canadian Medical Association Journal 126/2 (15 January 1982), 102-7.
Friedman’s Kaiser Permanente study demonstrates that smoking causes CHD. The arguments of Burch and Seltzer dismissed.
Not in archive Offsite (free)
P. R. J. Burch, Cigarette smoking and coronary heart disease, Canadian Medical Association Journal 127/2 (15 July 1982), 107.
Burch’s papers in Gerontology and Cardiovascular Research suggest that the risk factors for CHD are not causal.
Not in archive Offsite (free)
W.A. Tweed, Cigarette smoking and coronary heart disease, Canadian Medical Association Journal 127/2 (15 July 1982), 107-8.
Burch’s arguments dismissed.
Not in archive Offsite (free)

Other

P. R. J. Burch, Esophageal cancer in relation to cigarette and alcohol consumption, Journal of Chronic Diseases 37/11 (1984), 793-808.
A major paper applying Burch’s approach to epidemiology to esophageal cancer.
Archive tid: rkm07a99 Offsite ($)

Doll’s mathematics

Richard Doll and Richard Peto, Mortality in relation to smoking: 20 years observations on male British doctors. British Medical Journal 2/6051 (25 December, 1976) 1525-36
The case against smoking is confirmed by new data from the Doctors’ study.
Archive tid: jbk92f00 Offsite (free)
M. C. Pike and Richard Doll, Age at onset of lung cancer: significance in relation to effect of smoking, The Lancet, 285/7387 (27 March 1965) 665-668.
A reply to Passey
Archive tid: oye82a99 Offsite (£)

Prospective studies

The British doctors’ study

Richard Doll and A. Bradford Hill, Lung cancer and other causes of death in relations to smoking. A second report on the mortality of British doctors, British Medical Journal 2/5001 (10 November 1956), 1071-1081.
Archive tid: prd02b00 Offsite (£)
Richard Doll and Austin Bradford Hill, Mortality in relation to smoking: ten years’ observations of British doctors. Part I, British Medical Journal 1/5395 (30 May 1964), 1399-1410.
Archive tid: zok45c00 Offsite (free)
Richard Doll and Austin Bradford Hill, Mortality in relation to smoking: ten years’ observations of British doctors. Concluded, British Medical Journal 1/5396 (June 6 1964), 1460-1467
Archive tid: iug21a00 Offsite (free)
Richard Doll and Richard Peto, Mortality in relation to smoking: 20 years’ observations on male British doctors, British Medical Journal 2/6051 (December 25 1976), 1525-1536.
Archive tid: jbk92f00 Offsite (free)

The American Cancer Society 25-state study

E. Cuyler Hammond, Smoking in relation to the death rates of one million men and women, in W. Haensel (ed.) Epidemiological Approaches to the Study of Cancer and Other Chronic Diseases, National Cancer Institute Monograph 19, U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, U.S. Public Health Service, National Cancer Institute (January 1966), 127-204.
Archive tid: ftj92f00

The US veterans study

H.A. Kahn, The Dorn study of smoking and mortality among U.S. veterans: report on 8 1/2 years of observation, in W. Haensel (ed.), Epidemiological Approaches to the Study of Cancer and Other Chronic Diseases, National Cancer Institute Monograph 19, U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, U.S. Public Health Service, National Cancer Institute (January 1966), pp 1-125
Archive tid: owl96a00

The Japanese study of 29 health districts

T. Hirayama, Smoking in relation to the death rates of 265,118 men and women in Japan, Tokyo, National Cancer Center, Research Institute, Epidemiology Division (September 1967).
Archive tid: hnm82a99
T Hirayama, Smoking in relation to the death rates of 265,118 men and women in Japan. A report on 5 years of follow-up, Presented at the American Cancer Society’s 14th Science Writers’ Seminar, Clearwater Beach, Florida, March 24-29, 1972.
Archive tid: mxy68d00

The Canadian veterans study

E.W.R. Best, G.H. Josie and C.B. Walker, A Canadian study of mortality in relation to smoking habits: A preliminary report, Canadian Journal of Public Health 52 (March 1961), 99-106.
Archive tid: uyl96a00

The American Cancer Society 9-state study

E.C .Hammond and D. Horn, Smoking and death rates – Report on forty-four months of follow-up on 187,783 men. I Total mortality, Journal of the American Medical Association 166/10 (8 March 1958), 1159-1172.
Archive tid: ean26a99 Offsite ($)

California men in various occupations

J.E. Dunn, G. Linden and L. Breslow, Lung cancer mortality experience of men in certain occupations in California, American Journal of Public Health 50/10 (October 1960), 1475-87.
Archive tid: rug38c00

The Swedish study

R. Cederlof, L. Friberg, Z. Hrubec and U. Lorich, The Relationship of Smoking and Some Social Covariables to Mortality and Cancer Morbidity. A Ten Year Follow-up in a Probability Sample of 55,000 Swedish Subjects Age 18 to 69. Part I and II (Stockholm, Karolinska Institute, Department of Environmental Hygiene, 1975).
Archive tid: eqh81f00

Reports

RCP

Smoking and Health. A Report of the Royal College of Physicians of London on Smoking in relation to Cancer of the Lung and Other Diseases (London, 1962).
Archive tid: wjv02i00
Smoking and Health Now. A Report of the Royal College of Physicians (London, 1971).
Archive tid: qgv02i00
Smoking or Health. The Third Report from the Royal College of Physicians of London (London, 1977).
Archive tid: mrt02i00
Health or Smoking. The Fourth Report from the Royal College of Physicians of London (London, 1983).
Archive tid: mzr02i00 

Surgeon general

1964

Smoking and Health: Report of the Advisory Committee of the Surgeon General of the Public Health Service
Archive tid: emw34j00
Cigarette smoking and health characteristics
Not in archive Offsite
Not in archive Offsite

1979

Archive tid: jts10j00

Full list

Not in archive Offsite

Randomised prospective studies

Rose

Geoffrey Rose and P.J.S. Hamilton, A randomised controlled trial of the effect on middle-aged men of advice to stop smoking Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health 32/4 (December 1978), 275-281.
Archive tid: ziv05a99 Offsite (free)

Oslo

I. Hjermann, I. Holme, K. Velve Byre and P. Leren, Effect of diet and smoking intervention on the incidence of coronary heart disease, The Lancet 315/8258 (12 December 1981), 1303-10.
The Oslo study. A randomised, prospective study showed no effect on health from a changed diet and giving up smoking.
Archive tid: tvi97e00/pdf Offsite (£)

MRFIT

Multiple Risk Factor Intervention Trial Research Group, Multiple risk factor intervention trial. Risk factor changes and mortality results, Journal of the American Medical Association 248/12 (24 September 1982), 1465-77.
The MRFIT study. A randomised, prospective study showed no effect on health from a changed lifestyle which including giving up smoking.
Archive tid: mfg74b00 Offsite ($)

Goteborg

L. Wilhelmsen, G. Berglund, D. Elmfeldt, G. Tibblin, H. Wedel, K. Pennert, A. Vedin, C. Wilhelmssen and L. Werkö, The multifactor primary prevention trial in Göteborg, Sweden, European Heart Journal.
Not in archive Offsite ($)

European multifactorial trial

The European Society of Cardiology, Multifactorial trial in the prevention of coronary heart disease: 3. Incidence and mortality results, European Heart Journal 1983
The Lancet 1986 Apr 19 (327 8486):869-72.
Archive tid: eyp71d00 Offsite (£)
European collaborative trial of multifactorial prevention of coronary heart disease: final report on the 6-year results. World Health Organisation European Collaborative Group.
Annals of Medicine 24 (2), 1992
Tatu A. Miettinen & Timo E. Strandberg, Implications of Recent Results of Long Term Multifactorial Primary Prevention of Cardiovascular Diseases
Not in archive Offsite
Not in archive Offsite

Twins studies

Cederlof

Birgitta Floderus, Rune Cederlof and Lars Friberg, Smoking and Mortality: a 21-year follow-up based on the Swedish Twin Registry, International Journal of Epidemiology 17/2 (1988), 322-340
Archive tid: deb30a99
Jaako Caprio and Markku Koskenvuo, Twins, smoking and mortality: a 12-year prospective study of smoking-discordant twin pairs, Social Science and Medicine 29/9 (1989), 1038-1089
Archive tid: aey93d00
Rune Cederlof, Lars Friberg and Zdenec Hrubec, Cardiovascular and respiratory symptoms in relation to tobacco smoking, a study on American twins, Archives of Environmental Health (18 June 1969), 934-938
Archive tid: gky16a99

Carmelli

Dorit Carmelli, Gary E Swan, Dennis Robinette and Richard Babsitz, Genetic influences on smoking – a study of male twins, New England Journal of Medicine 327/12 (17 September 1992), 829-833.
Archive tid: ocq47h00 Offsite (free)
Dorit Carmelli and William F. Page, Twenty-four year mortality in world war II US male veteran twins discordant for cigarette smoking, International Journal of Epidemiology 25/ 3 (1996), 554-559.
Not in archive

Sceptics

Ronald A. Fisher, Smoking, the cancer controversy : some attempts to assess the evidence (Edinburgh, 1959).
Not in archive Offsite
Jerzy Neyman, Statistics – servant of all science, Science 122/3166 (2 September 1955), 401-16.
Archive tid: jrw13a00 Offsite ($)
Joseph Berkson, The statistical study of association between smoking and lung cancer, Proceedings of the Staff Meetings of the Mayo Clinic 30/15 27 July 1955), 319-48.
Archive tid: qgg1aa00
Joseph Berkson, Smoking and lung cancer: some observations on two recent reports, Journal of the American Statistical Association 53/281 (March 1958), 28-38.
Archive tid: sij3aa00 Offsite ($)
Joseph Berkson, The statistical investigation of smoking and cancer of the lung, Proceedings of the Staff Meetings of the Mayo Clinic 34/8 (15 April 1959), 1-20.
Archive tid: vmt77b00
Joseph Berkson, Statistics and Tobacco, Journal of the Americal Medical Association 172/9 (27 February 1960), 967-969.
Archive tid: bkv84f00 Offsite ($)
Joseph Berkson, Smoking and cancer of the lung, Proceedings of the Staff Meetings of the Mayo Clinic 35 (1960), 367-85.
Archive tid: feq86a00
Joseph Berkson and Lila Elveback, Competing exponential risks, with particular reference to the study of smoking and lung cancer, Journal of the American Statistical Association 55/291 (September 1960), 415-428.
Archive tid: cjj59c00 Offsite ($)
Joseph Berkson, Smoking and lung cancer, The American Statistician 17/4 (October 1963), 15-22.
Archive tid: vpu60a00 Offsite ($)
K.A. Brownlee, A review of “Smoking and Health”, Journal of the American Statistical Association 60/311 (September 1965), 722-739.
Not in archive Offsite ($)
R.D. Passey, Some problems of lung cancer, The Lancet 280/7247 (21 July 1962), 107-112.
Archive tid: asd34a99 Offsite (£)
Eysenck, Smoking, Health and Personality
Archive tid: udh29d00