Radio interviews

Shortly after my PhD in 1988, I was interviewed several times for the radio. I enjoyed the interviews with Ellen Brusse and Wim Bosboom in the Tros Nieuwsshow most. It was such a great succes the first time that they asked me back twice. I told them I was a bit apprehensive about driving back and forth to the studio (about an hour), so they sent me a car with a driver! Most radio interviews were about cosmetics, their effects and side effects. On several occasions the subject was aging of the skin and its treatment with cosmetic products. At that time, a cosmetic cream was put on the market that claimed to prevent and improve wrinkles. The product, which I believe was called Anti-age Retard, was heavily promoted by its producer with advertisements in all national newspapers. The active ingredient in the product was retinol. Retinol is vitamin A, which has no effect on wrinkles. But it was perfectly clear to me why they used this particular chemical in the cream and claimed effectiveness. The only substance with known effectiveness against wrinkles and aging was a related substance, vitamin A acid (tretinoin, retinoic acid). However, due to its irritant  effects to the skin, tretinoin was (and is) not allowed in cosmetics. The manufacturer, with using retinol, wanted  to piggyback on the succes and the fame of retinoic acid!  

And while I'm writing this, I suddenly remember that the Consumers' Association at the time had brought a lawsuit against the manufacturer because of that - unsubstantiated - claim of anti-wrinkle effect. They asked me (they knew of my PhD of course) to write a report. I did and it was brought in as evidence. Unfortunately, the judge did not consider my work to be convincing evidence: dr. De Groot only has his private practice, how could he give an expert opinion?  

I knew what to do and advised the Consumers' Association to show my report to a dermatology professor. I suspected that the opinion from a professor would be more convincing than that of a humble doctor in private practice.  Anyway, they consulted professor ......, who had absolutely no knowledge of the subject. I knew that, of course, but the Consumers' Association did'nt. The professor looked through my report, wrote a note that he had done so, that he completely agreed with me and that everything his colleague dr. De Groot had written was 100% scientifically correct. Was signed, Prof. dr. V...... The Consumers' Association went back to court, showed the approval of the professor, the judge now ruled in favor of the Association and the manufacturer had to rectify the advertisements and anti-wrinkle claims in all major national newspapers. My faith in the judiciary system had taken a serious blow. Fortunately, I was self-confident enough not to be angry or offended about it.

Below you can listen to some of my radio interviews. I have noted the subjects of the interviews and, where known, the date and the name of the program. Turn up the speaker a bit, because I've always had a low and soft voice. Some interviews were held over the phone, resulting in rather poor sound quality. On top of this, I had to compress the fragments considerably in order to be able to put them on the website. The fragments are all in Dutch, sorry! 

Tros Nieuwsshow first time  1989 Side effects of cosmetics 

Tros Nieuwsshow 2nd time, 1989 Side effects of cosmetics and Ingredient Labeling 

Tros Nieuwsshow 3rd time, 9 juni 1990, Skin aging and Anti-Age Retard 

1989 Adverse reactions to cosmetics, especially allergy to Kathon CG, 3 minutes 45                                                     seconds, followed by interview with Keuringsdienst van Waren 

Tros Klantenservice Augustus 1990. Sweating, interview by telephone

Year and program unknown. Retinol, interview by telephone

Program: Wetenschap (Science), 1983, with Dr. Liem Keuringsdienst van                                                                          Waren. Subject: Cosmetics, on the occasion of the release of our book                                                                        Unwanted effects of cosmetics and drugs used in dermatology

Program and date unknown. Subject: Skin cancer. Interview by telephone

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