Henry I. Miller


Henry I. Miller, MS, MD, was the Robert Wesson Fellow in Scientific Philosophy and Public Policy at the Hoover Institution. His research focused on public policy toward science and technology, encompassing a number of areas, including pharmaceutical development, genetic engineering in agriculture, models for regulatory reform, and the emergence of new viral diseases.

Miller served for fifteen years at the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in a number of posts. He was the medical reviewer for the first genetically engineered drugs to be evaluated by the FDA and thus instrumental in the rapid licensing of human insulin and human growth hormone. Thereafter, he was a special assistant to the FDA commissioner and the founding director of the FDA's Office of Biotechnology. During his government service, Miller participated frequently on various expert and policy panels as a representative of the FDA or the US government. As a government official, Miller received numerous awards and citations.

During his time at the Hoover Institution, Miller has become well known not only for his contributions to scholarly journals but also for his articles and books that make science, medicine, and technology accessible. His work has been widely published in many languages. Monographs include Policy Controversy in Biotechnology: An Insider's View; To America's Health: A Model for Reform of the Food and Drug Administration; and The Frankenfood Myth: How Protest and Politics Threaten the Biotech Revolution. Barron's selected The Frankenfood Myth as one of the 25 Best Books of 2004. In addition, Miller has published extensively in a wide spectrum of scholarly journals and popular publications worldwide, including The Lancet, Journal of the American Medical Association, Science, the Nature family of journals, Chronicle of Higher Education, Forbes, National Review, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, the Guardian, Defining Ideas, and the Financial Times. He was a regulator contributor to Forbes.com and frequently appeared on the nationally syndicated radio programs of John Batchelor and Lars Larson.

Miller was selected by the editors of Nature Biotechnology as one of the people who had made the "most significant contributions" to biotechnology during the previous decade. He serves on numerous editorial boards.

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Recent Commentary

Analysis and Commentary

Smarter Regs Can Be A ‘Force Multiplier’ For U.S. Research

by Henry I. Miller quoting Robert E. Hallvia American Greatness
Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Several years ago, I participated in a colloquium with a title along the lines of “Advancing Technology: Thinking Outside the Box.” My lecture probably was the most mundane: I proposed that smarter and more risk-based government regulation of products, processes, and technologies would act as what the military call a “force multiplier”—a capability, tool, or weapon that increases the effectiveness of your force and its ability to perform a mission.

Analysis and Commentary

‘Social Justice Warrior’ Vandana Shiva Is A Poor Advocate For The Poor

by Henry I. Millervia American Council on Science and Health
Tuesday, February 6, 2018

The recently-published “Social Justice Warrior Handbook,” which satirizes people who promote liberal, multicultural, anti-capitalist, anti-globalization, politically correct views, could have had Indian activist and mountebank Vandana Shiva on the cover. She opposes the tools and practices of modern agriculture and science--and well, modernity in general—and advocates retrogressive policies that will cause widespread malnourishment, deprivation and death to the very people she claims to champion. And she’s no friend of the environment, either.

Analysis and Commentary

The Organic Industry Is A Case Study In Rent-Seeking.

by Henry I. Millervia Learn Liberty
Monday, February 5, 2018

Adam Smith, the 18th century economist and philosopher, offered good insights into human nature as well as economics.  “People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public, or in some contrivance to raise prices,” he wrote in The Wealth of Nations.

Analysis and Commentary

Biotechnology Can Address The Mystery And Urgency Of Alzheimer’s Disease

by Mina Marmor, Henry I. Millervia Journal Of Commercial Biotechnology
Friday, February 2, 2018

[Subscription Required] Alzheimer’s disease (AD), a scourge that in time could virtually bankrupt healthcare systems worldwide, is one of the most intensively researched areas of medicine. Because of the existing uncertainty about its pathophysiology the unavailablity of reliable diagnostic tests, it is difficult to predict which prophylactic or therapeutic interventions are likely to be effective, but many biotechnology-derived drugs are prime candidates. We summarize the most promising approaches and drugs.


The Low Tech Revolution That's Transforming Medicine

by Henry I. Millervia Newsweek
Sunday, January 21, 2018

Much of the progress in medicine since I was a medical student has involved expensive, high-tech diagnostic tests and therapies – a trend that has accelerated recently and worries health economists and politicians alike because it boosts healthcare costs.

Analysis and Commentary

We're Underfunding Research On Vaccines That May Be Able To Prevent Another Terrible Flu Season

by Henry I. Millervia Los Angeles Times
Friday, January 19, 2018

Seasonal influenza — the flu — sickens and kills many Americans in a good year, and this is already a bad one. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, since 2010, flu has annually caused “between 9.2 million and 35.6 million illnesses, between 140,000 and 710,000 hospitalizations and between 12,000 and 56,000 deaths.” In this season, which began in November and won’t end until March, hospital emergency rooms are overflowing, deaths are running ahead of recent years and pharmacies are low on the anti-flu drug Tamiflu and intravenous solutions needed to keep patients hydrated.

Blank Section (Placeholder)Analysis and Commentary

The Organic Food Hoax

by Henry I. Millervia Defining Ideas
Thursday, January 18, 2018

The industry thrives by making fraudulent claims about the foods we eat. 

Analysis and Commentary

Putin Is Mounting Sly, Self Serving Attacks On American Science

by Henry I. Millervia Newsweek
Thursday, January 11, 2018

On Sunday, CBS’s 60 Minutes ran a segment on the propaganda role of Russian news network RT , or Russia Today . When asked about meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, RT ’s editor-in-chief Margarita Simonyan responded, "There's nothing illegal that we did...nothing murky.”

Analysis and Commentary

Supreme Court Will Decide The Fate Of An Endangered Frog In A Regulatory Swamp

by Henry I. Millervia Washington Examiner
Thursday, January 11, 2018

Neomi Rao, head of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, noted in a December op-ed that “in the previous administration, agencies frequently exceeded their legal authority when imposing costly rules [and that s]ome agencies announced important policy changes without following the formal rule-making process.”


Misguided Activism Imperils Potential Of Golden Rice

by Henry I. Millervia Genetic Literacy Project
Wednesday, January 10, 2018

"Their eyes tell their sad stories as ghostly white irises give way to vacant stares. We can look at them but they can’t look back at us. They’ve gone blind because of malnutrition.,” V. Ravichandran, a farmer in Tamil Nadu, India, describing children suffering from vitamin A deficiency.