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What's Happened to Dr Jonathan Kerr?

Discussion in 'XMRV Research and Replication Studies' started by Persimmon, Jun 4, 2011.

  1. eric_s

    eric_s Senior Member

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    I really don't know anything about UK law, except that i know you don't have a written constitution. But just beacuse it's not written doesn't mean it doesn't exist of course.

    What i meant is that in these countries i know about, a professor, for example, is an official, not an employee. So his "employment" is not based on a contract that is governed by civil law, but it's based on an administrative act and is governed by public law. Here it says about Dr. Kerr, it says he was Sir Joseph Hotung Clinical Senior Lecturer in Inflammation at St Georges University of London. I don't know the status of such a senior lecturer, if he's an official or a government employee on a contract.

    Now most constitutions grant the citizens free speech. Of course this can be restricted, but it has to happen based on a law (in the countries i know, UK and USA might be slightly different, but i guess bottom line it's similar). This law can't breach the constitution and also an administrative act based on this law has to conform with the constitution as well. Rights like the Freedom of Speech primarily protect the citizen against the state, not so much one citizen from the other (like in the case of a private employment). So it's much more relevant in the case of an official than in the case of somebody employed by some private entity. Any administrative act that is disproportional (and to me it would seem disproportional to not allow somebody to comment about the general circumstances of the termination of his service in such a case, where it's not about national security or something like that) is unconstitutional.

    It might be different in the UK and also it might be different if he agreed to it, but of course not if he was pressured to agree. If he took money for this (and we don't have any evidence he did, i don't believe this was the case) then i would call such a person corrupt. It would mean he sold us and the truth and i have a hard time believing this.

    This sounds like a conspiracy to me.
     
  2. eric_s

    eric_s Senior Member

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    I also think this explanation makes sense. Dr. Kerr has done a lot for us and so i agree that we should respect his wish. Even though i wish we/he would have a better option. Who knows, if some major changes happen, all of a sudden he might be back again.
     
    WillowJ likes this.
  3. WillowJ

    WillowJ Senior Member

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    sounds right to me, too
     
  4. Persimmon

    Persimmon Senior Member

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    I was just listening to the video of Dr Englander's presentation at his recent (20th November) Mount Sinai ME/CFS conference.

    Dr Englander spoke respectfully of Dr Kerr and his work, and then made the following remarks:
    "Unfortunately Jonathon Kerr has disappeared from the scene. He lost his tenure at St George's Hospital in London, and I haven't heard from him, and nor anyone else has, for well over a year."

    The upside is that Dr Kerr's work is to be followed up by a distinguished scholar (Dr Eric Schadt) at Mount Sinai Medical Centre. It sounded from Dr Englander's comments as if he thinks that Dr Kerr's research is right on the money.

    If you happen to read this, Dr Kerr, please be aware that there are individuals all around the world you appreciate what you've done, and who wish you well.
     
    beaker, maryb, Sean and 5 others like this.
  5. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Dr. Enlander was a friend of Dr. kerr's and colaborated with him on his gene study. I'm a patient of Dr. Enlander and I remember donating blood which was supposed to go to Kerr for the study.
     
  6. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Does anyone know anything about Dr. Kerr? His closest associates have not heard from him for over a year!
     
  7. Bob

    Bob

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    I don't think anyone knows what actually happened to Dr Kerr, except that he was forced out of CFS research.
    He is a friend of our community, and is missed.
    I hope he is OK.
     
    beaker and WillowJ like this.
  8. Nielk

    Nielk

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    I hope so too.
     
    beaker likes this.
  9. SilverbladeTE

    SilverbladeTE Senior Member

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    Somewhere near Glasgow, Scotland
    I know it's probably mundane, RL reasons: age; health or just frustration etc

    but, still, no one expects the Unholy Trinity of Weasel, Faucet and Peeves!!
    :p


    [video=youtube;sAn7baRbhx4]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sAn7baRbhx4[/video]
     
  10. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Seriously-this is a mystery. It's not just that he is not working on CFS anymore. His good friends can't find him. Am I the only one who thinks this is glaringly odd?
     
    beaker likes this.
  11. Bob

    Bob

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    Hi Nielk,
    If you are refering to Dr Enlander, then I'm not aware that they had a close relationship. I was under the impression that they had just met at conferences etc., and were cooperating with some research work together.
    I might be wrong, but that's my understanding of the situation.
    If Dr Kerr wishes to keep a low profile, for whatever reason, then I don't find that odd.
    Having said that, it would be nice to know that he's OK.
     
  12. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Dr. Enlander and Dr. Kerr were very good friends. I can understand if Dr. Kerr wants to keep a low profile after what happened to him, but he must know
    that people are worried about him and want to know how he's doing.
     
  13. VillageLife

    VillageLife Senior Member

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    Dr Kerr did help the NCI out with the UK Ashford 50 Gamma retrovirus study.
    He supplied 50 controls blood which was sent to the US.
    Maybe this caused him trouble.
     
  14. Nielk

    Nielk

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    What kind of trouble, besides being fired from his post?
     
  15. Persimmon

    Persimmon Senior Member

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    Jonathan Kerr has resurfaced!

    He's working at Nuffield Health's Exeter Hospital, a small (47 bed) hospital in Devon. He is one of 3 haematologists employed there. The other 2 work there part-time.

    That sounds like a huge come-down, in the sense that he's moved from a highly prestigious appointment at a prestigious London hospital, where he ran his own lab, to a dead end job in regional oblivion. Before this move, he'd spent more than 20 years climbing the career ladder. Maybe he likes the rural life, or has family reasons to be there; but it sounds like his decision to work on ME/CFS ruined his career.
     
    beaker, ukxmrv, vli and 4 others like this.
  16. Bob

    Bob

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    I wish Jonathan Kerr the best of luck, and my very best wishes, wherever his work takes him, and whatever his career/family choices.
    I hope Jonathan Kerr knows that the ME patient community are deeply grateful for the fascinating work that he did for our community.
    If Jonathan Kerr was forced out of CFS research simply because he carried out CFS work, then it is a scandal.
     
    Ritto, beaker, WillowJ and 8 others like this.
  17. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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    Its good to know he's OK and working. Actually Exeter is quite a nice place and Nuffield Health - private? better than a mouldy old NHS place, he's not a consultant though, what will his job entail? Looking at blood results?
     
    beaker and snowathlete like this.
  18. Persimmon

    Persimmon Senior Member

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    Nuffield Health is a private not-for-profit health provider. It operates small hospitals and physiotherapy/fitness centres etc. The big hospital in Exeter is the "Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital": this is a teaching hospital with 800 beds.

    Nuffield Health's "Exeter Hospital" employs a histopathologist as well as haematologists (ie the former would do tissue biopsies), and Dr Kerr's role doesn't involve seeing patients (ie he's not listed as a clinical haematologist); so presumably his job would be limited to the routine assessment of blood samples taken in ordinary clinical contexts. Alas, he would be embarrassingly overqualified for such a role. I'm not even sure that he has full-time employment.

    To try to explain this to those in the US, it's like a researcher with an MD and PhD from Cornell, who leaves an associate professorship at Columbia or NYU, to take a mundane and modestly paying non-research job at a tiny private hospital in Tocoma, Washington.
     
    beaker, maryb, vli and 1 other person like this.
  19. snowathlete

    snowathlete

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    It's true, I have family who live in Exeter and surrounding area and there are some lovely spots. It's really not the kind of place you expect to find someone like Kerr though. Maybe he decided to have a bit of easy life for a while, maybe for good now. Deserves it probably. Shame for us though.
     
    beaker likes this.
  20. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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    I'm just glad he's working and able to support his family. Its a big loss for ME patients if he doesn't return though, but as others have said we are still so grateful for to him for the work he has done.
    Even researchers in the UK don't get away from the witch hunters if they follow a biological path looking for the cause of ME. The psychs have had it sewn up for so long, but are things changing ever so slowly?
    We need so many more in the medical profession to stand up and say, these patients are so sick and we cannot help them. But their monthly paycheck is far more important:(
     
    beaker likes this.

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