An unlikely cure

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It so happens that I work in the same building as a major drug company. Recently, I overheard a conversation between a couple of their employees involving a cure for a particular type of brain tumor. It seems this is a type developed early in life, is invariably inoperable, and does not respond to radiation therapy. It progressively grows larger, eventually producing blindness, paralysis, and death.

Happily, the company has developed two regimens for treating it. The first causes the tumor to shrink and eventually disappear entirely. Unfortunately, it requires ten years of a strictly-followed diet and exercise regimen, along with some very expensive drugs which produce the usual undesirable side effects (hair loss, nausea, etc).

The second regimen involves a lifetime of drug treatment, but is otherwise far less rigorous than the first. And the drug does not have any serious side effects. Unfortunately, the drug can only be made by sacrificing certain primates of genus _Hylobates_ — it takes four to make a lifetime supply of the drug. Worse, the animals are endangered and thus difficult to obtain. And, to top it all off, this treatment does not destroy the tumor, but merely prevents it from growing. Nevertheless, it is this second treatment the company will be recommending to oncologists, for as everyone knows:

IT IS EASIER TO OBTAIN FOUR GIBBONS THAN REMISSION.

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