Author Topic: Elizabeth Holmes of Theranos banned from Owning/Operating Medical Laboratory  (Read 20508 times)

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Offline edy

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Just an update... not sure about when this came to light but WOW!!!!! :

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elizabeth_Holmes

Quote
Holmes was romantically involved with Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani, a Pakistani-born Silicon Valley technology entrepreneur.[26] She met him in 2002 at age 18 while still in school, he was 19 years her senior and married to another woman at the time.[75] They became romantically involved in 2003, about the same time Holmes dropped out of college.[75] Sunny divorced his wife in 2004 and the couple moved into an apartment around 2005. Although Sunny didn't officially join the company until 2009, as Chief Operating Officer, he was advising Holmes behind the scenes prior to then.[75] Holmes and Sunny ran the company jointly in a corporate culture of "secrecy and fear".[75] He left Theranos in 2016 in the wake of the WSJ investigations, fired by Holmes according to her but on his own according to him.[75]

This may help her case... seems she was made into a figure-head puppet as she was naive and controlled by an "experienced" bamboozeler.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2019, 08:03:24 pm by edy »
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Offline tsman

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This may help her case... seems she was made into a figure-head puppet as she was naive and controlled by an "experienced" bamboozeler.
The expanded paragraph is from an edit on 8th September 2018. Before that, it was just mentioning they had a relationship and citing the WSJ article.
 

Offline edy

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Stuff related to the relationship on the Wikipedia page of "Sunny" also which I didn't know about:

Quote
Ramesh "Sunny" Balwani (born March–June 1965[2]) is the former president and chief operating officer of Theranos, which was a privately held health technology company founded by his then-girlfriend Elizabeth Holmes.


Quote
In July 2000, Balwani cashed out his shares in Commerce One, pocketing nearly $40 million shortly before the company went out of business, right before the dot com bubble burst.[1][6] Subsequently, he went back to school and received a Master of Business Administration from the University of California, Berkeley in 2003.[6] He spent another four years in a computer science graduate program at Stanford University, but dropped out in 2008.[6]

While enrolled at Berkeley, Balwani met Elizabeth Holmes, who was in her senior year of high school. The two were on a summer trip to Beijing, as a part of Stanford's Summer Mandarin Course cohort.[1] Holmes then went on to Stanford University to pursue an undergraduate degree in chemical engineering [1], but later dropped out to focus full-time on Theranos.[7][8]

Quote
In September 2009, despite having no experience in the field of biotechnology, Balwani joined Theranos, run by his then-girlfriend Elizabeth Holmes. Together, they raised $700 million of investor money.[20]

Quote
Balwani was in a romantic relationship with Elizabeth Holmes during his tenure at Theranos.[23] Prior to this, he was married to a Japanese artist named Keiko Fujimoto.[1] The couple lived in San Francisco, before they divorced in 2002.

I guess when you are a naive 18-year old just graduating high school, young and good looking, lots of energy and the media just gobbles you up like you are the next Einstein out of Berkley... and you meet a very rich older man, present your idea and his "light bulb" goes off with the sound "cha-ching" Let's make some cash... We have the makings of a giant investment fraud scheme and nobody seems to step back for a second and actually think to VALIDATE and PROVE if it is legit.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2019, 11:35:03 pm by edy »
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Offline cdev

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Some extremely good con artists have NPD


They are very very good liars. And they have this sort of energy that sucks people in.

I don't know what happened in this case. The world these people travel in is very different than our own. There are a lot of things going on, stories arent always the way the media spin them.

That said, there are a lot of con artists these days. A lot.

And a lot of people looking to make a quick buck too.
« Last Edit: January 04, 2019, 01:33:14 am by cdev »
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Offline james_s

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Should have been a lifetime ban.

Does it even matter? Who is going to let her run a medical lab even if there is nothing legally barring her from doing so?
 

Offline cdev

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Their processes did have some value, the big picture, however just was nowhere near as good nor as repeatable as they claimed it was.

Within an AI context, however, it would have been helpful. How do you ascertain values of data in situations where its just a data point, not 'the' data? All illnesses are places along a continuum, as is all science. Improve a few parameters and does somebody suddenly become no longer sick? Officially, they do.
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Offline EEVblog

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I guess when you are a naive 18-year old just graduating high school, young and good looking, lots of energy and the media just gobbles you up like you are the next Einstein out of Berkley... and you meet a very rich older man, present your idea and his "light bulb" goes off with the sound "cha-ching" Let's make some cash... We have the makings of a giant investment fraud scheme and nobody seems to step back for a second and actually think to VALIDATE and PROVE if it is legit.

*cough*
Meredith Perry (uBeam)
*cough*
Mark Cuban
*cough*
 

Offline edy

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I guess when you are a naive 18-year old just graduating high school, young and good looking, lots of energy and the media just gobbles you up like you are the next Einstein out of Berkley... and you meet a very rich older man, present your idea and his "light bulb" goes off with the sound "cha-ching" Let's make some cash... We have the makings of a giant investment fraud scheme and nobody seems to step back for a second and actually think to VALIDATE and PROVE if it is legit.

*cough*
Meredith Perry (uBeam)
*cough*
Mark Cuban
*cough*

Yes, but at least Mark Cuban didn't have an illicit affair with Meredith Perry, causing her to drop out of college, then go on to divorce his wife and shack up with her, operating things in the background and then officially joining the company a few years later, running it in a culture of "secrecy and fear" to defraud investors of millions of dollars, and then try to split once investigations started.  :-DD  Sometimes movies just write themselves... So the book came out, now who is going to write the screenplay? :popcorn:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bad_Blood:_Secrets_and_Lies_in_a_Silicon_Valley_Startup

And apparently one of our own EEVBlog members noted something about Mederith Perry being dropped as CEO from the company a few months ago as mentioned in this blog post:

https://liesandstartuppr.blogspot.com/2018/09/meredith-perry-no-longer-ubeam-ceo.html
« Last Edit: January 04, 2019, 10:06:35 am by edy »
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Offline EEVblog

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Yes, but at least Mark Cuban didn't have an illicit affair with Meredith Perry, causing her to drop out of college, then go on to divorce his wife and shack up with her, operating things in the background and then officially joining the company a few years later, running it in a culture of "secrecy and fear" to defraud investors of millions of dollars, and then try to split once investigations started.  :-DD  Sometimes movies just write themselves... So the book came out, now who is going to write the screenplay? :popcorn:

That would be Vanessa Taylor, with Jennifer Lawrence starring!

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5795144/

BTW, how does it take $50M to make a drama film?
 

Offline cdev

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I think some of the scenes in "The Social Network" capture the startup atmosphere in the Bay Area pretty well.
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Offline Magiciaen

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That would be Vanessa Taylor, with Jennifer Lawrence starring!

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5795144/

BTW, how does it take $50M to make a drama film?

The title is the obvious one to go for, but ingenious nonetheless.
 

Offline edy

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So a documentary is coming out by HBO titled "The Inventor: Out For Blood in Silicon Valley". Here is an article about it on CNN:

https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/11/tech/the-inventor-theranos-documentary/index.html

Here is the Wikipedia page:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Inventor:_Out_for_Blood_in_Silicon_Valley

Can't wait to watch it! Should be out next week, and soon available for streaming thereafter. Here's a clip:



I though this quote from the CNN article was quite enlightening:

Holmes declined to participate in the film. But producer Jessie Deeter had a five hour dinner with Holmes in an attempt to convince her.
"She wasn't giving much up, but what she did convey to Jessie was that she was the victim — not that she'd done anything wrong," he said.
Gibney, whose body of work has examined deceptive individuals over the years, said he wasn't surprised.
"I think a lot of these people who over promise and imagine that they can do things well beyond what anybody else has done so far, they are possessed of a certain delusional quality — a certain kind of narcissistic belief in their own powers," said Gibney. "That's become, in a way, kind of my stock and trade: to examine those characters, 'cause there's something glorious about that."
« Last Edit: March 11, 2019, 09:34:20 pm by edy »
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Offline edy

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This is not the HBO movie but it is a nice quick summary which I'm sure ColdFusion decided to do to cash in on the HBO searches on YouTube. Here it is:



[ADDITIONAL COMMENTS:  I just finished watching the video, not bad at all. I recommend it as it gets pretty quickly to the point and gives a lot of background information as well]
« Last Edit: March 26, 2019, 11:42:26 pm by edy »
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Offline DimitriP

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I prefer the ancient Egyptian custom of erasing  names as if they never existed.
Now we just make them even more famous.
Progress, I guess.
   If three 100  Ohm resistors are connected in parallel, and in series with a 200 Ohm resistor, how many resistors do you have? 
 
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Offline EEVblog

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Is she in prison yet?
 

Offline chris_leyson

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Thanks edy, just watched the ColdFusion documentary. It still leaves a lot of unanswered questions, like why the investors showed no due diligence, no vetted technical and scientific fact checking.
 

Offline edavid

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Is she in prison yet?

"Although a date for the trial has not been set, ABC News reported that both Holmes and Balwani are expected to appear for a status hearing on April 22 in San Francisco."

Source: https://people.com/movies/whats-next-elizabeth-holmes-trial-wedding-jennifer-lawrence-movie/
 

Offline floobydust

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I like her business model, after Thomas Edison- she named her blood analysis machines the "Edison".
You know, where you promise investors a light bulb and then take 1,000 guesses and years to make it eventually work...

The engineers said "it's physically impossible to do all the testing in a tiny machine, we need to make it bigger" and they were of course, denied making anything larger than a cute, fake analysis machine.
The NDA's were so over-reaching, nobody dared blow the whistle.

She must be a sociopath. The fact she never blinks her eyes on camera or stage is too creepy.
 

Offline edy

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The fact she never blinks her eyes on camera or stage is too creepy.

In that ColdFusion documentary I linked earlier it points out that she uses a "baritone voice" in all her interviews and meetings, and that it is a faked to sound more authoritative. I thought that was creepy!!! Why would women need to do this?  |O   It points to deeper sociopathic problems, insecurity issues... as quoted from one of the articles I linked below:

Quote
Her voice is a trademark, as many would-be investors and Theranos employees noted in the book "Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup." In the book, many said they were taken aback when first meeting Holmes, thanks to her unexpectedly deep voice and wide, unblinking eyes.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jerryweissman/2019/03/29/elizabeth-holmes-baritone/#12b551844b8b

https://www.thecut.com/2019/03/why-did-elizabeth-holmes-use-a-fake-deep-voice.html

https://www.businessinsider.com/theranos-founder-elizabeth-holmes-deep-voice-2019-3

Sure we all have 20/20 hindsight.. these traits seem to indicate mental issues, putting on a fake persona and image, etc... but this "voice lower" and "unblinking eyes" thing is apparently something people are being coached to do for improving their careers or improving their sales pitches. So who can blame Elizabeth Holmes for perhaps being a bit over-zealous when she read somewhere that this would help her improve her career. The problem is that once you start, you can't just turn it off again as people will see it is all some stupid act. It becomes a trap.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2019, 05:25:48 pm by edy »
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Offline KC0PPH

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Google BioFire Film Array....
 

Offline Bud

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I do not think you can control blinking for a prolonged time, as you eyes need to be moisturized . This may have more to do with a person's physiology.
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Offline edy

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Google BioFire Film Array....

BioFire Film Array is a very interesting device. Very different though than what Theranos was trying to do.

The BioFire system basically does PCR (polymerase chain reaction) on samples to try and find positive presence of one or several known pathogens. The "mixture" of PCR primers contains however many numbers of pathogens they have made unique markers for... and they also know the lengths of the output products (the length of the DNA chain products) that correspond to each pathogen. So their system runs the sample with this group of 10, 20 or 30 primers (each made specifically to target certain pathogens they are looking for) and see what comes up.

I used to do this kind of stuff in my undergraduate genetics lab years ago, then run the products to see the length using gel eletrophoresis and staining it blue or some other color.

The other advantage of PCR is that tiny samples are needed because the reaction itself has significant amplification properties. That is why it is used on DNA testing, forensics and so on. You need only a tiny sample to get a large amount of duplicated DNA strand product which then can be visualized.

Theranos was trying to do basic laboratory testing on blood looking not at DNA but at amount of various cells, chemicals, proteins, sugar, electrolyte, etc... You need various chemistry to do each of these analyses and you destroy your sample usually so you can't conduct another test on it. So you will need a large amount of sample to be able to run a whole panel of tests. Lower your sample too much and you end up having lots of inaccuracies. Also the machine itself cannot accommodate all the chemical reactions required.
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Offline andersm

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ABC ran a 7-episode podcast series called The Dropout, which is being made into a TV series by Hulu.

Offline mairo

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I saw a Tek power supply on the video and the only thing I am thinking about is: Has the company's assets gone on auction already, or not yet?  >:D
 

Offline donotdespisethesnake

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I'm not sure she is that much different to many other "players" in tech start ups, or business in general. A lot of business leaders are basically charismatic sociopaths. I've worked for some similar people. Despite having virtually no relevant knowledge or skills, somehow they attract funding and people who believe, and even after someone points out what they are trying is basically impossible, those people are quietly advised, "play along, take the money".

The main difference is she got caught out. The "successful" sociopaths are smart enough to not get caught out, e.g. by keeping promises and product deadlines vague. Steorn (and several other companies in the "free energy" field) kept going for quite a while, and burned up a lot of investor cash, even though their product was theoretically impossible. It is not that surprising that something that is vaguely plausible can attract a lot of funding. 

Those who got lucky and succeeded are remembered as geniuses (like Edison), those who failed are thought to be frauds.

Bob
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