12 September 2012
Vol 4, Issue 151

About The Cover

Cover image expansion

ONLINE COVER Singular Centaur. Half horse and half human, centaurs are trapped between two natures, and most like the one shown wreak havoc in the mythology literature. Many animal models of human disease do the same in the biomedical literature by not precisely recapitulating human pathophysiology. In this issue, Fay et al. present a careful synthesis of mortality data from 21 animal studies on the new recombinant protective antigen vaccines and the already-licensed anthrax vaccine adsorbed. In the accompanying Perspective, Ioannidis discusses studies that test the success of cross-species translation and describes some reasons for the failures. The goal of preclinical studies is to acquire knowledge about human responses to therapeutic interventions; but few animal models of human disease truly follow in the tradition of Centaur Chiron, who taught many of the great mythological heroes in skills related to human health. [CREDIT: LOREN FILE/ISTOCKPHOTO]