In this NY Times article on parents who are opting out of vaccinations, one mom notes her objections:

“I refuse to sacrifice my children for the greater good,” said Sybil Carlson, whose 6-year-old son goes to school with several of the children hit by the measles outbreak [in San Diego]. The boy is immunized against some diseases but not measles, Ms. Carlson said, while his 3-year-old brother has had just one shot, protecting him against meningitis.

“When I began to read about vaccines and how they work,” she said, “I saw medical studies, not given to use by the mainstream media, connecting them with neurological disorders, asthma and immunology.” (emphasis mine)

She saw medical studies, “not given to use by the mainstream media” (huh?) connecting vaccines with “immunology”?! Do you think she even understands what she said? Did the reporter (who seems to write more about politics than science)?

There are some people out there who do an excellent job of educating themselves on some rather complex scientific issues. However, there are also people who can string a lot of fancy, medical-sounding words together and impress their friends, but who really lack anything but very basic superficial understanding of the science. Being frightened of vaccines because they “connect to immunology” is like the Penn and Teller getting people worked up over “dihydroxygen monoxide”–it sounds scary to those who don’t understand what it means. How many more of these web-educated anti-vaxers are spreading the word about the dangerous immunology that a vaccinating parent might expose their child to?

Comments

  1. #1 PalMD
    March 24, 2008

    “All your B-cell are belong to us!!” MUWAHAHAHA!

    But seriously, Google University is a dangerous place. I find it hard to tolerate the folks who endanger their kids and others’ kids. But it’s the folks actually disseminating this trash that really piss me off.

  2. #2 Todd
    March 24, 2008

    This has got lawsuit written all over it. Parents who withhold recommended vaccinations from their children need to be held liable for their willful negligence, if it causes to their children or others. Stupidity can often be offset by very large monetary penalties. If there was a way to file class action lawsuits against the “doctors” who delude these people, all the better.

  3. #3 Joseph
    March 24, 2008

    Note to parents: everything you read on the inter-webs is not necessarily true.

    Especially this crap.

    Man I hope a whole new generation of non-immunized, home-schooled kids isn’t going to kill us all!

  4. #4 Tony P
    March 24, 2008

    Look on the bright side, if they don’t vaccinate they pretty much dead end on the genetic scale.

  5. #5 Beach Bum
    March 24, 2008

    Evolution in action. It will take a while, but eventually these genes will be removed from the gene pool.

  6. #6 PalMD
    March 24, 2008

    Look on the bright side, if they don’t vaccinate they pretty much dead end on the genetic scale.

    AND

    Evolution in action. It will take a while, but eventually these genes will be removed from the gene pool.

    For better or worse, not true (I think most folks know that, but…)

    If an unvaccinated kid gets pertussis, they may do fine, but the other kids they give it to may not. Nasty.

  7. #7 boomer0127
    March 24, 2008

    This is and has always been a direct reflection on the sorry state of science education in this country. In high school, the parents are more than half the battle. The other half is just keeping order in the classroom so the teacher can teach.

    In college, everything has to be dumbed down lest the teacher “trample on the dreams” of the students. Tests have to be written such that the students are able to regurgitate information without thinking. When does it end? Will we be granting PhD’s to people that know nothing?

    Sorry to rant.

  8. #8 Gary
    March 24, 2008

    She could be right. I heard somewhere that the government also gives people immunity!

  9. #9 ElkMountainMan
    March 24, 2008

    if they don’t vaccinate they pretty much dead end on the genetic scale.

    But perhaps not before they spread disease to others (as Pal pointed out), including me and you. Not all vaccines protect us forever, and continued protection for older individuals depends partly upon 100% vaccination in the young.

    Ignorant, uneducated people such as Ms. Carlson are sacrificing their own children and the rest of us for nothing…except maintaining their own smug but foolish sense of superiority.

  10. #10 Mountain Man
    March 24, 2008

    Vaccinations are mostly bullshit. Natural immunity is much stronger and much more efficient. You don’t need all these silly shots — they’re just, essentially, placebos for parents.

  11. #11 boomer0127
    March 25, 2008

    @Mountain Man: You say “mostly”. So then they have somewhere between 1 and 49% “non-bulshit”. Please explain this percentage of redeeming value you place on vaccines.

    Oh, and I agree – Natural Immunity is much stronger – for those who survive to lead a normal life.

    When you say placebo, are you implying they are ineffective? That is incorrect. When’s the last time we had a smallpox outbreak? Or are you meaning that they give a false sense of security to parents? Or maybe they help to keep parents at work by lessening symptoms, thereby saving mostly money but some lives, like the VZV vaccine?

    Just curious about your thought process, assuming you mean what you say.

  12. #12 Tyler DiPietro
    March 25, 2008

    I say we deliberately inject Mountain Man with every disease known to man, he can then expound the benefits of natural immunity to his heart’s content.

  13. #13 Phil
    March 25, 2008

    Yeah I guess smallpox and polio were just figments of everyone’s imagination.

  14. #14 Anton
    March 25, 2008

    I suppose it would be asking to much to give this woman the benefit of the doubt and assume that she meant “immunologic diseases” – or even that the reporter mangled it.

    This sort of criticism of trivial details doesn’t reflect well on the people doing the criticizing. Stick to substantive points and try to avoid the juvenile ad hominem stuff. I say that as a supporter of science and rationality, who hates to see science turned into a mob sport.

  15. #15 Wes
    March 25, 2008

    Vaccinations are mostly bullshit. Natural immunity is much stronger and much more efficient. You don’t need all these silly shots — they’re just, essentially, placebos for parents.

    Posted by: Mountain Man | March 24, 2008 11:44 PM

    The dichotomy you’re drawing between vaccines and “natural immunity” sounds like it’s got some bullshit in it, too.

  16. #16 N 'Man O' Rage' R
    March 25, 2008

    Tara, I normally agree with everything you publish here (Even stuff I dont understand) but I didnt expect you of all people to be a DHMO denier!

    Dihydroxy Monoxide is a major contributor to climate change and excessive inhalation causes death in thousands every year!. Despite this, it is used widely in agriculture and secondary industry and it now contaminates over 70% of planet!! Infact its also widely used in medicine and is available off then shelf without prescription at exhorbitant prices!

    Why is this dangerous and addictive chemical not banned all over the planet!!? Companies in France are bottling and selling DHMO all over the globe while it is being pushed down peoples throats in the UK in its purest form through standard household plumbing!

    The problem is so severe that saturated levels of DHMO in the atmosphere can freeze on aircraft wings causing crashes and loss of life. Frozen DHMO showers cause major disruptions and traffic accidents all over the world.

    Its a disgrace that we let this happen and respected scientists like you should be helping save lives that would otherwise be lost to this awful chemical.

  17. #17 Ron
    March 25, 2008

    As an anthropologist I often look a how people acquire and act on their beliefs. This is always an irrational process, though usually with an empirical basis (even so-called ‘urban legends usually have some legitimate concern behind them). People tend to see in black and white, so if vaccines involve a certain amount of risk (and they do) , then people tend to react, ‘all bad.’ Then there are the scientists who, on the other extreme act equally irrationally and conclude ‘vaccination, all good’. Parents have legitimate concerns about vaccination, but are usually not well informed as to the real risks. However, mocking their concerns and calling them stupid and denying that there are risks does not seem to me to be the proper reaction of responsible scientists.

  18. #18 boomer0127
    March 25, 2008

    Ron – I believe the parent was referred to as “ignorant”, not “stupid”. And it was her Sense of Superiority that was “foolish”.

    For a scientist to “irrationally” conclude that vaccination is “all good” would imply that said scientist is not critically evaluating data, just going with their gut. I’d like to believe that the FDA, clinical trials, animal trials, while maybe not perfect, are doing their part to generate data so that a “rational” scientist can evaluate it.

    You make it sound like every drug and vaccine made gets foisted upon the population, when in actuality, rates of failure in safety trials are extremely high – most never see the light of day.

  19. #19 boomer0127
    March 25, 2008

    Oh, and before I get grouped into the “irrational” saying vaccines are “all good” – I’d like to go on record saying I am concerned that the VZV vaccine may not be “all good”.

    Yes, it lowers disease symptoms, keeps parents at work instead of home with their kids during chicken pox, saves lots of $$$ for hospitals, and likely saves the lives of the few kids who would die of VZV naturally. But I do not believe that the vaccine is capable of completely blocking wild-type infection and the vaccine’s attenuation may not provide complete protection against shingles outbreaks. Time will tell.

    Live attenuated virus vaccines need to be engineered, not just attenuated by passage in culture. This vaccine *was* foisted upon the population before the actual attenuation was completely understood. Yes, now the specific mutations are known.

    I’m not saying this vaccine is “all bad” – it has its purpose, and that was pretty much to save money in the short term – both my kids have had the vaccine. My boss is happy I didn’t take two weeks off of work like my parents had to. But now there is talk of multiple boosters throughout life to protect the elderly from shingles, etc. I think there was a rush to get this on the market in the name of $$$, not in the name of protecting the lives of children.

    Herpes vaccination is a tough nut to crack.

  20. #20 MRW
    March 25, 2008

    “Dihydroxy Monoxide”

    Umm… I know the joke is to give water a scary name, but this doesn’t make sense. This would be (OH)2O or H2O3. I think Tara and N ‘Man O’ Rage’ R were both looking for dihydrogen monoxide.

  21. #21 Ron
    March 25, 2008

    Far be it from me to think that the pharmaceutical industry would ever ‘foist a drug upon the population’ merely for their own profit, or that the FDA would fail to catch such cynical behavior.

  22. #22 Tara C. Smith
    March 25, 2008

    I think Tara and N ‘Man O’ Rage’ R were both looking for dihydrogen monoxide.

    Aargh, you’re right. I’ll fix it, thanks.

  23. #23 Tara C. Smith
    March 25, 2008

    Anton,

    I suppose it would be asking to much to give this woman the benefit of the doubt and assume that she meant “immunologic diseases” – or even that the reporter mangled it.

    I am, and that’s why I asked if the journalist even knew what she was talking about–they’re culpable in spreading this fear of vaccines as well, just as ill-informed parents are.

  24. #24 Chad
    March 25, 2008

    That reminds me of the time I saw some lady on the news talking about irradiating meat and dairy products. Her quote was, I shit you not, “When I eat a steak I want to eat protein, not radiation.”

    It left me speechless.

  25. #25 Becca
    March 25, 2008

    Don’t you know we have a constitutional *right* to avoid immunology?!
    It comes under “cruel and unusual punishment”. Believe me, I’ve sat through an immunology class, it’s right up there with waterboarding.

  26. #26 cooler
    March 25, 2008

    The measeals death rate dropped to like 100 per year before vaccination even started. Isnt there an aspect of civil liberties in all this? I mean whats next are we going to ban alcohol because somebody might get drunk and kill somebody, have a curfew at 9pm so we can cut the murder rate in half? Are we going to start quarenting people with infections and force them to stay home?

    I agree with Ron, this pro vaccination propaganda has gotten to be ridicoulous, look at Gardisil, there’s no real evidence HPV even causes cancer, a 40 year window period? Show me the peer reviewed evidence that shows causality. Give me a break.

    The side effects of the vaccines seem to be worse, especially when dealing with microbes that the immune system can usually handle pretty easily, and that some of these microbes, Gardisil were designed for microbes that are probably harmless.

    I find it kind of strange young girls are being forced to take Gardisil, and that the Docs administering the shot can’t even cite the scientific papers that prove HPV causes cancer.

    When people are confronted with real diseases like Smallpox and polio they usually have no problem vaccinating, but when dealing with phantom microbes like HPV and Gardisil, one cannot blame parents for asking tough questions.

  27. #27 N 'Man O' Rage' R
    March 25, 2008

    @MRW : I knew that! Mea Culpa!

    @Chad: “irradiating meat and dairy products.” Yes, but was it organic and DNA free?

    @Dr. Tara: “Incivility can also wear a smile and use pretty words. ” over at the Intersection.

    Love it! Keep up the good work!.

  28. #28 Poodle Stomper
    March 25, 2008

    “Believe me, I’ve sat through an immunology class, it’s right up there with waterboarding.”

    Becca, I’m not sure whats wrong with you…I loved immuno! All that talk of VDJ joining gives me goosebumps! :-)

  29. #29 isles
    March 25, 2008

    Antivax mom Sybil says: “I refuse to sacrifice my children for the greater good.”

    What she means: “I am totally OK with sacrificing other children so mine don’t have to go near any kind of risk.”

  30. #30 Dr Scott
    March 25, 2008

    cooler–not that you really give a sh*t, but since you asked…

    Munoz N, Bosch FX, et al. Epidemiologic classification of human papillomavirus types associated with cervical cancer. N Engl J Med 2003; 348:518-27.
    Walboomers MJ, Jacobs MV, et al. Human papillomavirus is a necessary cause of invasive cervical cancer worldwide. J Pathol 1999; 189:12-19.
    Bosch FX. Human papillomavirus and cervical cancer–burden and assessment of causality. J Natl Cancer Inst Monogr 2003;31:3-13.

    The MMWR report on Quadrivalent Human Papillomavirus Vaccine (Mar 12 2007; 56:1-24) would be recommended background reading, if you were at all interested.

    And…100 cases of measles per year?
    What country and year are you referring to?

  31. #31 cooler
    March 25, 2008

    “HPV DNA was detected in 1739 of the 1918 patients with cervical cancer (90.7 percent) and in 259 of the 1928 control women (13.4 percent”

    This does not prove causality, for there is no attempt to culture the microbe and inoculate animals, aka Kochs Postulates.

    Duesberg debunks once again.

    Latent Viruses and Mutated Oncogenes: No Evidence for Pathogenicity
    Peter H. Duesberg and Jody R. Schwartz

    B. Herpes Virus, Papilloma Viruses, and Cervical Cancer
    Inspired by the SV40/adenovirus-cancer models, infection by herpes simplex virus (HSV) was postulated in the 1970s to be the cause of cervical cancer based on epidemiological correlations with HSV DNA (3). The virus is sexually transmitted and is latent in about 85% of the adult population of the U.S. (3). Infection by intact HSV typically kills the cell. However, defective and intact viruses that become latent do not kill cells (3).

    The viral DNAs in cervical cancers are defective and integrated with cell DNA. Cervical cancers with defective HSV DNA are clonal, just like virus-free cancers (191-194). In agreement with the SV40/ adenovirus models, HSV does not replicate in the tumors. But, unlike the SV40/adenovirus models, no set of viral genes is consistently present or expressed in human cervical cancers. Therefore, the “hit-and-run” mechanism of viral carcinogenesis was proposed (195). It holds that neither the complete HSV, nor even a part of it, needs to be present in the tumor. Obviously, this is an unfalsifiable, but also an unprovable, hypothesis.

    Also inspired by the SV40/adenovirus models, and based on epidemiological correlations, infection by human papilloma virus (HPV) was postulated in the 1980s by zur Hausen to be a causative factor in cervical and anogenital cancers (3, 191, 196).

    Papilloma viruses are transmitted by sexual and other contacts, like the herpes viruses, and are widespread or “ubiquitous” in at least 50% of the adult population of the U.S. and Europe (3, 191). For example, using the PCR to amplify sequences of one particular strain of papilloma virus, 46% of 467 women in Berkeley, California, with a median age of 22 were found to carry HPV, but none of them had cervical cancer (199). Many other strains of HPV exist (3, 191) that could not be detected with the assay used in this study (199). Like the SV40/ adenovirus models, HPV does not replicate in the tumors. But, unlike these models, HPV naturally replicates nonlytically (13), forming polyclonal warts with unintegrated viral DNA plasmids (200).

    zur Hausen reports that cervical cancers occur in less than 3% of infected women in their lifetime, but the incidence in HPV-free controls was not reported (191). In the U.S., the incidence of cervical cancer in all women, with and without HPV, per 70-year lifetime is about 1% (197). In a controlled study of age-matched women, 67% of those with cervical cancer and 43% of those without were found to be HPV-positive (198). These cancers are observed on average only 20-50 years after infection (191).

    Different sets and amounts of viral DNA are integrated into cell DNA of different carcinomas (191), and viral DNA is poorly expressed in some cancers and not expressed at all in others (3, 191, 201). Moreover, different HPV strains are found in different cancers (3, 191, 196). Viral antigens are found in only 1-5% of carcinomas (3). Accordingly, HPV does not replicate in the cancer cells and there are no reports of HPV-specific histological or physiological markers that set HPV DNA-positive apart from negative carcinomas (191). There is also no virus-specific integration site in HPV DNA-positive cancers (191), indicating that no specific cellular gene is activated, or that a tumor suppressor gene is inactivated by integration of viral DNA. HPV DNA-positive tumors are clonal and carry clonal chromosome abnormalities, just like virus-negative tumors (191-194).

    The HPV-cancer hypothesis of zur Hausen proposes that HPV encodes a “transforming factor” that is suppressed in normal cells by a cellular interference factor (CIF). Inactivation of both CIF alleles by mutation is postulated to result in viral carcinogenesis (191). The low probability of developing mutations in both suppressor alleles is said to explain the long intervals between infection and cancer. This hypothesis correctly predicts that only a small fraction of infections lead to cancer. It further predicts clonal tumors with active HPV DNA and mutations in both alleles of the suppressor genes, and it predicts no effects on the karyotypes of cells.

    Howley et al. proposed that a viral protein neutralizes the proteins of the retinoblastoma and p53 tumor suppressor genes, and that neutralization of these suppressor proteins causes cancer (202). The proposal is modeled after the hypothesis that retinoblastoma is caused by a cellular cancer gene, provided that a complementary suppressor gene, termed the retinoblastoma gene, is inactivated (see Section IV). This hypothesis predicts polyclonal tumors.

    The following epidemiological and biochemical arguments cast doubt on these HPV-cancer hypotheses:

    1. Random allelic mutation of suppressor genes, as postulated by zur Hausen, predicts a few cancers soon, and more long after infection. Since cancers only appear 20-50 years after infection, cooperation between HPV and mutations cannot be sufficient for carcinogenesis.

    2. Further, the proposal of zur Hausen that inactivation of host suppressor genes is necessary for viral transformation is not compatible with HPV survival. Since HPV, like all small DNA viruses, needs all of its 8-kb DNA for virus replication (13), suppression of one or more HPV proteins by normal cellular genes would effectively inhibit virus replication in all normal cells. Conversely, if viral transforming proteins were not suppressed by normal cells, virus-replicating wart cells should be tumorigenic because all viral genes are highly expressed in virus replication (1, 13, 191).

    3. The clonality of cervical cancers rules out the Howley hypothesis.

    4. The lack of a consistent HPV DNA sequence and of consistent HPV gene expression in HPV DNA-positive tumors is inconsistent with the zur Hausen and Howley hypotheses and indicates that HPV is not necessary to maintain cervical cancer.

    5. The presence of HPV in no more than 67% of age-matched women with cervical cancer (198) also indicates that HPV is not necessary for cervical cancer.

    6. The hypothesis also fails to explain the presence of clonal chromosome abnormalities consistently seen in cervical cancer (16, 192-194)-except if one makes the additional odd assumption that only cells with preexisting chromosome abnormalities are transformed by HPV.

    It follows that neither HPV nor HSV plays a direct role in cervical carcinomagenesis. Moreover, the HPV-cancer hypothesis offers no explanation for the absence of a reciprocal venereal male carcinoma.

    Thus, detecting inactive and defective viral DNA from past infections in non-tumorigenic cells with a commercial hybridization test (Vira/Pap, Digene Diagnostics, Silver Spring, Maryland) or with the PCR (199) seems worthless as a predictor of rare carcinomas appearing decades later, in view of the “ubiquity” (191) of these viruses in women and the total lack of evidence that cervical cancer occurs in women with HPV more often than in those without. This test, at $30-150, is currently recommended for the 7 million Pap smears that appear “atypical” in the U.S. per year (Digene Diagnostics, personal communication, 1991). By contrast only 13,000 cervical cancers are observed annually in both HPV-positive and -negative women in the U.S. (197). Indeed, the test may be harmful, considering the anxiety a positive result induces in believers of the virus-cancer hypothesis.

    An alternative cervical carcinoma hypothesis suggests that rare spontaneous or chemically induced chromosome abnormalities, which are consistently observed in both HPV and HSV DNA-negative and -positive cervical cancers (192-194), induce cervical cancer. For example, smoking has been identified as a cervical cancer risk (204). The controlled study of age-matched women described above suggests that 52% of the women with cervical cancer were smokers compared to only 27% of those without (198). Indeed, carcinogens may be primary inducers of abnormal cell proliferation rather than HPV or HSV. Since proliferating cells would be more susceptible to infection than resting cells, the viruses would be just indicators, rather than causes of abnormal proliferation. Activation of latent retroviruses like HTLV-I (Section III,A) (2), herpes viruses (12), and lambda phages (205) by chemical or radiation-induced cell damage and subsequent proliferation are classical examples of such indicators. Indeed, Rous first demonstrated that the virus indicates hydrocarbon-induced papillomas; it “… localized in these and urged them on …” and suggested that enhanced proliferation is a risk factor for carcinogenesis (203).

    According to this hypothesis, HPV or HSV DNAs in tumor cells reflect defective and latent viral genomes accidentally integrated into normal or hyperplastic cells, from which the tumor is derived. This hypothesis readily reconciles the clonal chromosome abnormalities with the clonal viral DNA insertions of the “viral” carcinomas. The inactive and defective viral DNA in the carcinomas would be a fossil record of a prior infection that was irrelevant to carcinogenesis.

  32. #32 Tara C. Smith
    March 25, 2008

    This does not prove causality, for there is no attempt to culture the microbe and inoculate animals, aka Kochs Postulates.

    As has been pointed out to you ad nauseum, even Koch realized there were exceptions. Additionally, molecular koch’s postulates are a well-accepted alternative.

  33. #33 san diego
    March 25, 2008

    There is now some discussion of modifying California’s personal belief exemption. And the family of the index case has had some negative social consequences from their decision not to vaccinate…

  34. #34 Poodle Stomper
    March 25, 2008

    Speaking of Duesberg, this question is open to anyone who can answer it. When exactly did he go completely bonkers in his ideas on viral oncogenes and cancer? I see a paper to which he contributed from 1996 where he seems to still acknowledge their existence and function but I’m not sure if it his his beliefs or the other author’s. Anyone know?

    (See: “Host range restrictions of oncogenes: myc genes transform avian but not mammalian cells and mht/raf genes transform mammalian but not avian cells.” R Li, R P Zhou, and P Duesberg. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1996 July 23; 93(15): 7522-7527.)

  35. #35 Dale
    March 25, 2008

    I believe in vaccinations but one can’t help but note that a child who is not vaccinated has zero chance of developing a serious vaccine related complication and very little chance of developing the disease (especially now that the majority of children ARE vaccinated), let alone a serious complication of the disease which, although more common than a vaccine related complication, is still relatively rare. A child who is vaccinated has a lower than the already low chance of developing the disease or one of its complications but also a low chance of developing a complication related to the disease. All the probabilities involved are low – but the problems that they are associated with can be quite serious. I can see where a parent could have a hard time making a decision.

  36. #36 Bella
    March 25, 2008

    Actually, my favorite part of this NYT article is later, when they talk about infectious disease parties:

    ‘In the wake of last month’s outbreak, Linda Palmer considered sending her son to a measles party to contract the virus. Several years ago, the boy, now 12, contracted chicken pox when Ms. Palmer had him attend a gathering of children with that virus.

    “It is a very common thing in the natural-health oriented world,” Ms. Palmer said of the parties.’

    Willfully sending your kid to get a disease? Am I missing something? How is this not child abuse?

  37. #37 Dr Scott
    March 25, 2008

    I hadn’t been formally introduced to the Duesberg article until now. Thanks, I think.
    I was going to ask why such a smart guy was being so stupid but then I realized that (1) Duesberg seems more devil’s advocate than serious scientist, and (2) the (overbearingly long) excerpt was from 1992. For instance, even cooler can cite data refuting Duesberg’s point #5. A few interesting points but overall, pedantic; if the causation between HPV and cervical cancer has not yet been proven on a molecular level via Koch, then the correlation is about as strong as you can find in nature, with a corresponding pathological basis (cervical dysplasia, anyone?).
    But to bring it all around, many people (such as cooler) are incapable of weighing strength of evidence, believing alties and fringe elements are acceptable and equal alternatives to mainstream science. In a post-modern, relativistic world, Jenny McCarthy and Jim Carrey carry just as much authority as Julie Gerberding and Elias Zerhouni…if not more, since fear and “motherly instinct” will often trump reason and research. Add in a healthy dose of American independence, Ayn Rand-influenced selfishness, and a fair-to-middling science education, and–voila–a perfect recipe for vaccine phobia!
    Too bad I don’t have a good recipe for countering it. Instead, I’m brushing up on what measles looks like, because we’re definitely heading for less than 95% coverage…bye-bye, herd immunity…hello, measles encephalitis…

  38. #38 Adele
    March 25, 2008

    Duesberg debunked once again. I won’t argue with cooler bc he is mentally ill and he needs treatment not us arguing with him but Duesberg can the guy read I doubt it.

    1995, Duesberg says you can’t get “clonal chromosome abnormalities consistently seen in cervical cancer” from HPV. Yeah you can and they knew it before 1995 and they knew how from animal models and transformed cell models and it was HPV E6 protein messes up p53 and E7 does Retinoblastoma and then you get chromosomal aberation.

    What was Duesberg to lazy for walking to the libray at Berkeley for these papers all before 1995,
    1: Matlashewski G.
    The cell biology of human papillomavirus transformed cells.
    Anticancer Res. 1989 Sep-Oct;9(5):1447-56. Review.
    PMID: 2556072 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    2: Vousden KH.
    Human papillomavirus oncoproteins.
    Semin Cancer Biol. 1990 Dec;1(6):415-24. Review.
    PMID: 1966493 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    3: Howley PM, Münger K, Romanczuk H, Scheffner M, Huibregtse JM.
    Cellular targets of the oncoproteins encoded by the cancer associated human
    papillomaviruses.
    Princess Takamatsu Symp. 1991;22:239-48. Review.
    PMID: 1668886 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    4: Scheffner M, Münger K, Byrne JC, Howley PM.
    The state of the p53 and retinoblastoma genes in human cervical carcinoma cell
    lines.
    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1991 Jul 1;88(13):5523-7.
    PMID: 1648218 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    5: Band V, De Caprio JA, Delmolino L, Kulesa V, Sager R.
    Loss of p53 protein in human papillomavirus type 16 E6-immortalized human mammary
    epithelial cells.
    J Virol. 1991 Dec;65(12):6671-6.
    PMID: 1658367 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    6: Münger K, Scheffner M, Huibregtse JM, Howley PM.
    Interactions of HPV E6 and E7 oncoproteins with tumour suppressor gene products.
    Cancer Surv. 1992;12:197-217. Review.
    PMID: 1322242 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    7: Tidy JA, Wrede D.
    Tumor suppressor genes: new pathways in gynecological cancer.
    Int J Gynecol Cancer. 1992 Jan;2(1):1-8.
    PMID: 11576229 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

    8: DiPaolo JA, Popescu NC, Alvarez L, Woodworth CD.
    Cellular and molecular alterations in human epithelial cells transformed by
    recombinant human papillomavirus DNA.
    Crit Rev Oncog. 1993;4(4):337-60. Review.
    PMID: 8394744 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    9: Griep AE, Herber R, Jeon S, Lohse JK, Dubielzig RR, Lambert PF.
    Tumorigenicity by human papillomavirus type 16 E6 and E7 in transgenic mice
    correlates with alterations in epithelial cell growth and differentiation.
    J Virol. 1993 Mar;67(3):1373-84.
    PMID: 8382301 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    10: Lambert PF, Pan H, Pitot HC, Liem A, Jackson M, Griep AE.
    Epidermal cancer associated with expression of human papillomavirus type 16 E6
    and E7 oncogenes in the skin of transgenic mice.
    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1993 Jun 15;90(12):5583-7.
    PMID: 8390671 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    11: Kim MS, Li SL, Bertolami CN, Cherrick HM, Park NH.
    State of p53, Rb and DCC tumor suppressor genes in human oral cancer cell lines.
    Anticancer Res. 1993 Sep-Oct;13(5A):1405-13.
    PMID: 8239512 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    12: Swan DC, Vernon SD, Icenogle JP.
    Cellular proteins involved in papillomavirus-induced transformation.
    Arch Virol. 1994;138(1-2):105-15. Review.
    PMID: 7980001 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    13: Demers GW, Halbert CL, Galloway DA.
    Elevated wild-type p53 protein levels in human epithelial cell lines immortalized
    by the human papillomavirus type 16 E7 gene.
    Virology. 1994 Jan;198(1):169-74.
    PMID: 8259651 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    14: Park DJ, Wilczynski SP, Paquette RL, Miller CW, Koeffler HP.
    p53 mutations in HPV-negative cervical carcinoma.
    Oncogene. 1994 Jan;9(1):205-10.
    PMID: 8302581 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    15: White AE, Livanos EM, Tlsty TD.
    Differential disruption of genomic integrity and cell cycle regulation in normal
    human fibroblasts by the HPV oncoproteins.
    Genes Dev. 1994 Mar 15;8(6):666-77.
    PMID: 7926757 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    16: Demers GW, Foster SA, Halbert CL, Galloway DA.
    Growth arrest by induction of p53 in DNA damaged keratinocytes is bypassed by
    human papillomavirus 16 E7.
    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1994 May 10;91(10):4382-6.
    PMID: 8183918 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    17: Pan H, Griep AE.
    Altered cell cycle regulation in the lens of HPV-16 E6 or E7 transgenic mice:
    implications for tumor suppressor gene function in development.
    Genes Dev. 1994 Jun 1;8(11):1285-99.
    PMID: 7926731 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    18: Slebos RJ, Lee MH, Plunkett BS, Kessis TD, Williams BO, Jacks T, Hedrick L,
    Kastan MB, Cho KR.
    p53-dependent G1 arrest involves pRB-related proteins and is disrupted by the
    human papillomavirus 16 E7 oncoprotein.
    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1994 Jun 7;91(12):5320-4.
    PMID: 8202487 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    19: Lechner MS, Laimins LA.
    Inhibition of p53 DNA binding by human papillomavirus E6 proteins.
    J Virol. 1994 Jul;68(7):4262-73.
    PMID: 8207801 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    20: Schmitt A, Harry JB, Rapp B, Wettstein FO, Iftner T.
    Comparison of the properties of the E6 and E7 genes of low- and high-risk
    cutaneous papillomaviruses reveals strongly transforming and high Rb-binding
    activity for the E7 protein of the low-risk human papillomavirus type 1.
    J Virol. 1994 Nov;68(11):7051-9.
    PMID: 7933087 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

  39. #39 Left_wing_fox
    March 25, 2008

    Nooo, not another thread lost to cooler’s stupidity!!!

    While I agree that confronting misinformation is admirable, can we please just post a link to one of the dozens of other threads he’s sent into a denialist death spiral, ten ignore him here while we focus on the subject at hand?

  40. #40 Poodle Stomper
    March 25, 2008

    Adele,
    I’m generally not a fan of people posting lists of references (mostly because the people that do so don’t actually understand them) but…dang thats a sexy list! Thanks for posting it; I’m a bit behind on HPV biology and this will give me a place to start back up. :-)

  41. #41 SLC
    March 25, 2008

    Re Adele

    Prof. Duesberg is a clinical example of a one-time reputable scientist who goes off the rails. I have pointed out on many occasions several such individuals, e.g. Linus Pauling, J. Allen Hynek, Brian Josephson, and William Shockley. It might make for an interesting paper or even book to examine what makes a reputable scientist with a good track record of reputable work turn into a whackjob.

  42. #42 Poodle Stomper
    March 25, 2008

    What makes me wonder is why he went from demonstrating viral oncogenes and their ability to transform cells to denying they are real then going back and saying they do again. I wonder how many times he keeps changing his mind

  43. #43 cooler
    March 25, 2008

    Left wing fox is just an idiotic tool from planet ghoul.

    The reason there is such a correlation with HPV is Described by Duesberg.

    “Since proliferating cells would be more susceptible to infection than resting cells, the viruses would be just indicators, rather than causes of abnormal proliferation”

    “The controlled study of age-matched women described above suggests that 52% of the women with cervical cancer were smokers compared to only 27% of those without (198). Indeed, carcinogens may be primary inducers of abnormal cell proliferation rather than HPV or HSV. Since proliferating cells would be more susceptible to infection than resting cells, the viruses would be just indicators, rather than causes of abnormal proliferation. Activation of latent retroviruses like HTLV-I (Section III,A) (2), herpes viruses (12), and lambda phages (205) by chemical or radiation-induced cell damage and subsequent proliferation are classical examples of such indicators.”

  44. #44 ElkMountainMan
    March 26, 2008

    Dear Ron,

    You state that,
    As an anthropologist I often look a how people acquire and act on their beliefs. This is always an irrational process, though usually with an empirical basis

    Is this presumption of quasi-empirical irrationality part of the basis for the idea, so prevalent in your and related fields, that all “belief systems” and all “sciences” are essentially equal: different but at heart equivalent “ways of knowing”? While I appreciate the progressive political philosophy underpinning this notion, I fear that there isn’t much else to support it.

    Compare and contrast the scientific “way of knowing” with that of Ms. Sybil Carlson and other parents who refuse to vaccinate their children.

    If Dr. Tara Smith wishes to evaluate the MMR vaccine, she knows where to look: in the scientific literature, which for all its faults has more safeguards on veracity than any current alternatives. Does Ms. Sybil Carlson know where to look? Her comments (as reported) indicate she doesn’t.

    When Dr. Smith has compiled a stack of relevant research papers, she has the educational background (biology, statistics, etc.) to read and understand them. Does Ms. Carlson? Most likely not, based on her own (reported) words.

    If Dr. Smith has questions, she has at her disposal a world-wide web of fellow scientists with specialized knowledge (and, yes, diverse opinions on topics like immunization). Does the average anti-vax parent ever interact with an expert in the field and evaluate his or her answers critically?

    Of course there is a component of irrationality to all human endeavor, including science. It’s the proportions we must consider. A person who, with no educational background and no specific knowledge, decides she has found occult information that most of the world has been denied and makes a major health decision for her children and indeed the rest of society based on peer pressure and her internet readings and against the advice of her doctors….is acting relatively irrationally. The scientist, who with extensive educational background and specialized knowledge, reads the peer-reviewed scientific literature and examines statistics in publically-available sources, arriving at the conclusion that a vaccine is effective and safe….is acting relatively rationally.

  45. #45 SLC
    March 26, 2008

    Re cooler

    OK Mr. cooler. Whackjob Peter Duesberg says that HIV doesn’t cause AIDS but refuses to take a blood transfusion from an HIV positive donor. I challenge Mr. cooler to do what Prof. Duesberg has refused to do, namely take a blood transfusion from and HIV positive donor. Mr. cooler, put up or shut up.

  46. #46 micro student
    March 26, 2008

    So where should parents go for good information when deciding whether to vaccinate? Should they simply take the advice of their pediatrician? Should they take the time to consult multiple pediatricians? The web has become a powerful tool for dispersing information, both good and bad. It also allows for all the rantings here, most unsupported. And I say unsupported to mean that you don’t include your data or your references to back up your statements, not that your statements can’t be substantiated. For those of us who are students and reading this blog as part of a microbiology class assignment, it is not helpful just to read your rantings and complaints. Tell me where to go to get good info about vaccinations. Give me evidence. Back up your arguments. And what is with all the name calling?????

  47. #47 Tara C. Smith
    March 26, 2008

    Well, one could start with the nation’s health authorities–the NIH and CDC, both of whom have webpages on vaccines and their risks, benefits, etc. One can also consult the American Academy of Pediatrics’ pages on the same topics, if you’d want to get away from government sources. There are also several Institute of Medicine reports on the topic of vaccine safety. If you want more of a history of vaccination, Arthur Allen’s Vaccine is an excellent, and very readable, treatment.

  48. #48 Dr Scott
    March 26, 2008

    microstudent–
    I’d also recommend http://www.immunize.org and the Vaccine Education Center at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (www.chop.edu). Both are very good clear sites, with data and statistics, and cogent arguments why vaccines are so important.
    I think the tone drops to less-than-cordial levels when some of us feel others are here not for honest discourse but instead for trolling and being intellectually dishonest.

  49. #49 Adele
    March 26, 2008

    micro student good you are asking questions, I had a expensive appliance broke last week. I didn’t give it to my husband gods help us he would kill it!! and I didn’t do it on myself I took it to a repair place.

    Bc the repair guy studied this stuff and I trust him to do it right, if he doesn’t or lies and cheats I will complain to BBB. I trust him, its not like I’m automaticly, OK this guy is going to cheat me and the thing will break again and cut my kids finger off. I’m not like, lets go on the internet and find about how repair people suck they always want money and your worse off after. BC when you get info you have to think where it is from, a profi or an activist who doesn’t know what the are doing.

    They did alot of research about parents that don’t take care of their kids with vaccines. They some times say education is factor but not always. Money may be but not always also. Biggest thing is, parents that think doctors are lying and companies are lying government to, they are against vaccines. They will not believe info from experts like Tara just gave, they will believe info from alternative med and anti vaccination orgs and parents that they like that think like they do. Oh and they all most always get their info from the internet.

    Here is three sources of what I said
    Factors Associated With Refusal of Childhood Vaccines Among Parents of School-aged Children
    A Case-Control Study
    Daniel A. Salmon, PhD, MPH; Lawrence H. Moulton, PhD; Saad B. Omer, MBBS, MPH; M. Patricia deHart, ScD; Shannon Stokley, MPH; Neal A. Halsey, MD
    Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2005;159:470-476.
    http://archpedi.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/full/159/5/470

    Vaccine Beliefs of Parents
    Who Oppose Compulsory Vaccination
    KEnnedy Brown Gust 2005 Public Health Reports

    Green and Lee, Utah Department of Health
    http://cdc.confex.com/recording/cdc/nic2006/ppt/free/4db77adf5df9fff0d3caf5cafe28f496/paper10238_1.ppt#11

  50. #50 pat
    March 26, 2008

    “Whackjob Peter Duesberg says that HIV doesn’t cause AIDS but refuses to take a blood transfusion from an HIV positive donor.”

    this is his explanaition:

    Q16: The best way I know to prove the HIV hypothesis wrong is to infect otherwise perfectly healthy people with HIV, don’t give them any treatment, and see what happens. I know this type of research has been done with animals. Since you can’t experiment on other people, why don’t you infect yourself? Maybe you can recruit some followers and have a “population” for a real experiment.

    (Duesberg)

    A16: I have considered, even offered, this directly. Here are the problems:

    1) In the US, it is not possible to work with HIV without the approval of the National Institutes of Health and the university. Thus I would need an NIH peer-approved grant to do this. Without such a contract I would risk my lab and job.

    2) In addition, if 10 years after injecting myself I would still be without symptoms, the HIV-AIDS orthodoxy would call me a bluff unless I had had a grant that allowed for appropriate controls. I have submitted 9 grant applications to study AIDS, including doing the study you mention, but none was approved.

    3) In the US there are 1 million HIV-positive persons without any symptoms, and in the world there are an estimated 34 million. Monitoring a few hundred of these for AIDS and non-viral AIDS risks would be a statistically much more relevant experiment than if one person injected himself. But surprisingly such studies are not done. Why not? Guess!

  51. #51 cooler
    March 26, 2008

    Microstudent,
    If you want to see how fraudulent the IOM’s studies that claim they debunked a link between autism and vaccines see Dr. Ayoub’s lecture.
    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=6890106663412840646

    Then google the film Hiv fact or fraud to hear Deusberg in his own words.

    Then do a pub med search on shyh ching lo and mycoplasma, then Google Project Day lily, about illegal biowarfare testing, then you will see the light.

  52. #52 SLC
    March 26, 2008

    Re pat

    Mr. pat, they say that money talks and bullshit walks. Prof. Duesberg is a first class walker.

  53. #53 truth
    March 26, 2008

    Micro,
    You might want to check out the aidstruth.org
    site, and Dr. Ayoub beleives in the illuminati and black helicopters.

    Stick to the peer reviewed evidence cited above, don’t waste your time on trolls.

  54. #54 franklin
    March 26, 2008

    Pat quotes Duesberg:

    3) In the US there are 1 million HIV-positive persons without any symptoms, and in the world there are an estimated 34 million. Monitoring a few hundred of these for AIDS and non-viral AIDS risks would be a statistically much more relevant experiment than if one person injected himself. But surprisingly such studies are not done. Why not? Guess!

    But Pat ignores the fact that this quote is an obvious lie, as thousands of such people have been monitored over many years and the statistical analysis has shown that HIV infection is the cause of AIDS.

    Here is a figure from a recently published example.

  55. #55 Poodle Stomper
    March 26, 2008

    Sigh, I see Cooler is back to the “Lo’s research shows HIV doesn’t cause AIDS” despite having been shown to be incorrect over and over. I guess he decided not to read any of Lo’s later research after all.

  56. #56 Poodle Stomper
    March 26, 2008

    Truth,
    I believe that Ayoub actually said the Illuminati are using the vaccine to lower fertility in an evil plot to reduce the world population…now thats a credible source. Is he another one of those people that believe in lizard-human hybrids ruling the planet in some secret government or has he not gone quite that far yet?

  57. #57 cooler
    March 26, 2008

    Never said that, just said that the new world order has weaponized mycoplasmas and spread them Project Day Lily (google it, Nicolsons new book) style, illegaly tested them on gulf war one vets. Dr. Lo was working for polar bear number #1, who forced him to illegally test on inmates and veterans, but the New World Order let Lo publish on the Academic points of the microbe,where he proved they were pathenogenic in their own right, just to test the intelligence of the scientific community.

    The 3 polar bears that rule the world have instructed me that this is the truth. Do you deny that there are 3 polar bears that rule the earth and that spread weaponized mycoplasmas? Are you a polar bear denier?

  58. #58 cooler
    March 26, 2008

    just collapsed in complete laughter at my post!

  59. #59 cooler
    March 26, 2008

    I am now going to retire from further posts at scienceblogs for a long while, if people ignore me I am going away for good. Thanks its been fun.

  60. #60 The Evolved Rationalist
    March 27, 2008

    Some anti-science assholes here need to be used as lab rats in scientific experiments.

    Cooler, what are you smoking?

  61. #61 Poodle Stomper
    March 27, 2008

    Cooler,
    I suppose it probably is best to “retire” from the board after citing someone who believes that the lizard-hybrid Illuminati are trying giving population reduction a go using vaccines as a credible source. Take a break, get some medical help, take a few college biology classes and maybe actually read Lo’s work while you’re on your break.

  62. #62 ElkMountainMan
    March 27, 2008

    Pat quotes Duesberg as writing,

    I would need an NIH peer-approved grant to [work with HIV]. Without such a contract I would risk my lab and job.

    As usual, Duesberg is wrong: one doesn’t need a grant from NIH to study HIV. But Pat’s quote is interesting for another reason.

    Duesberg, so afraid to risk his “lab and job,” seems to have had no qualms about:

    1. Focusing his efforts for two decades on a series of belligerent, low-quality reviews and letters (constituting the bulk of his scholarly output in many years), on a topic, HIV/AIDS, with which he had no direct research experience.
    2. Twisting, even misquoting the work/words of actual HIV/AIDS researchers to make his case in these reviews….and accusing others of accepting correlation as evidence while his own “support” was often completely speculative and correlative.
    3. Antagonizing certain colleagues for over twenty years for (one might guess) purely personal reasons.

  63. #63 Poodle Stomper
    March 27, 2008

    “As usual, Duesberg is wrong: one doesn’t need a grant from NIH to study HIV. ”

    Robert Willner didn’t need one either when he supposedly pricked himself with a needle used on a person with HIV. I wonder why Duesberg doesn’t simply follow Willner’s example; find a person with HIV, take some blood, and inject it into himself. No grant needed or anything.

  64. #64 SLC
    March 27, 2008

    Re cooler

    So Mr. cooler is saying bye bye. A word of advice. Lay off those tuna fish sandwiches with mercury.

  65. #65 Kevin
    March 27, 2008

    Stick to substantive points and try to avoid the juvenile ad hominem stuff. I say that as a supporter of science and rationality, who hates to see science turned into a mob sport.

    Well said, Anton, but most posters on this particular blog are not bright enough to post independent thoughts; thus, they assuage their significant insecurities by ferociously defending the herd.

    In college, everything has to be dumbed down lest the teacher “trample on the dreams” of the students. Tests have to be written such that the students are able to regurgitate information without thinking. When does it end? Will we be granting PhD’s to people that know nothing?

    Sorry to rant.

    No need to apologize for your rant. It’s entirely apt. What you should apologize for is not realizing that you are directing your rant at the wrong population. It is the Phd-wielding psuedo-intellectuals commonly found on this blog who are failing to produce good Science.

    Kevin

  66. #66 pat
    March 27, 2008

    “Mr. pat, they say that money talks and bullshit walks. Prof. Duesberg is a first class walker.” -SLC

    That’s fine.

    “But Pat ignores the fact that this quote is an obvious lie”
    -Free Wheelin’ Franklin.

    FYI: You may have missed it in your venomous mood but nowhere do I qualify his remarks as thruthful or misleading; I merely quoted D. for the sake of clarity and accuracy so no one need guess as to what he may or may not have said. Now, what he actually MEANT is another question altogether.

    “But Pat’s quote is interesting for another reason.”
    -Elk

    It’s not my quote it is D’s. JESUS dude, pay attention.

    PS: After a prolonged absence I find the bloggers on this site still incapable of telling who’s who and who said what.

  67. #67 Adele
    March 27, 2008

    cooler says
    if people ignore me I am going away for good

    Anyone wanna bet me about how long for good is??

  68. #68 Kevin
    March 27, 2008

    For all the pseudo-scientists here who espouse the “vaccines are always good” dogma (whether you admit to it or not, your incessant ad hominen attacks belie your true feelings), I’d love to hear they innumerable excuses you’ll undoubtedly conjure up in your continued defense of modern Science’s most notable boondoggle:

    Vaccine Failure Is Setback in AIDS Fight: Test Subjects May Have Been Put at Extra Risk Of Contracting HIV

    I have no doubts that if this vaccine attempt hadn’t ended in complete and utter failure, all the toadies on this blog would have found no issue with further obliterating the civil liberties of our citizenry by demanding that this ridiculous “vaccine” be given to all sexually active adults, particularly those deemed at risk. Reading this blog is like reading an excerpt from Orwell’s lost manuscript.

    Our country is doomed, if your ilk represents the best and brightest minds available…

    Kevin

    Speaking of unwarranted personal attacks…
    Guess I was right about the housing market, after all…right, Adele? You know about it being a “ponzi scheme”; yet, at the time, you were very vocal in telling me how little I knew important things, like financial markets. Looks like the herd on this blog was wrong…

    How about you, SLC…you called me a wackjob for pointing out the corruption in the housing market. I think you, in your infinite ignorance, even called me a conspiracy theorist. If I’m a wackjob/conspiracy theorist, who’s been proven right, what does that make you?

  69. #69 franklin
    March 27, 2008

    Pat whines:

    “But Pat ignores the fact that this quote is an obvious lie”
    -Free Wheelin’ Franklin.

    FYI: You may have missed it in your venomous mood but nowhere do I qualify his remarks as thruthful or misleading;

    Pat, you may have missed it, but I never stated that you qualified Duesberg’s remarks as truthful or misleading.

    I stated that you ignored the deliberate falsity of Duesberg’s claim.

    Which is exactly what you did.

    I also provided a link to scientific data that show Duesberg is wrong.

    Which you continue to ignore.

  70. #70 Adele
    March 27, 2008

    Kevin I already said, you were right about housing bubble. You were wrong, its not a ponzi scheme, I will not explain you the diffrence again. You also said housing bubble will makes a great depression, USA will be a third world nation then scientists will get exposed bc their frauds. Thatis why your a conspiracy person.

    OK lets go back on topic KEv that vaccine stuff you said about, who did the work, oh my gods it was scientists!! and who reported it, scientists to!! Sorry no vaccines always good dogma. Just your conspiracy theroy again!!

  71. #71 pat
    March 27, 2008

    “Anyone wanna bet me about how long for good is??”
    -ADELE

    I’ll bet you….not long at all

    “Pat, you may have missed it, but I never stated that you qualified Duesberg’s remarks as truthful or misleading.
    I stated that you ignored the deliberate falsity of Duesberg’s claim.”
    -Free Wheelin’Franklin

    You imply that I ignored the DELIBERATLY mistating statements of Duesberg when all I did was copy paste them ad verbatim….weather they were deliberate or not on Duesbergs behalf is not my beer. One more time…. They are HIS words not mine. Figure out the difference… A true scientific endeavor for ya, maaaaaan.

  72. #72 pat
    March 27, 2008

    “Kevin I already said, you were right about housing bubble. You were wrong, its not a ponzi scheme, I will not explain you the diffrence again. You also said housing bubble will makes a great depression, USA will be a third world nation then scientists will get exposed bc their frauds. Thatis why your a conspiracy person.

    OK lets go back on topic KEv that vaccine stuff you said about, who did the work, oh my gods it was scientists!! and who reported it, scientists to!! Sorry no vaccines always good dogma. Just your conspiracy theroy again!!”

    Adele, do us all a favor and learn english once and for fucking ALL, BC otherwise u soundeuh likeuh aneuh idiotaeuh!

  73. #73 pat
    March 27, 2008

    Adele,
    Can you spell HIV for me?
    Your pigeon english still sucks

  74. #74 Franklin
    March 27, 2008

    Gee Pat,

    You’re so touchy.

    All I did was point out that you posted an obvious lie from Duesberg without noting that it is false.

    If you are going to disseminate lies you should expect other people to take note of your actions.

  75. #75 pat
    March 28, 2008

    “Gee Pat,

    You’re so touchy.

    All I did was point out that you posted an obvious lie from Duesberg without noting that it is false.”

    If you are going to disseminate lies you should expect other people to take note of your actions.”

    You are annoying in your arrogance. You are calling me a disseminator of lies merely for pointing out D’s answer to the question of injecting himself hiv. Then to top it off you imply in your last sentence that I should have action taken against me for doing so when all that is needed is a note on how and why D is wrong and/or lying. The fact that you take issue with me is simple passive-aggressive trollism.

  76. #76 ElkMountainMan
    March 28, 2008

    There is no shame, Pat, in making mistakes with your second or third language….only in ridiculing the efforts of others while making similar mistakes yourself. Taking others to task for keyboarding or language mistakes carries more weight when you avoid such errors, or at least make fewer than four of them in a single sentence:

    “DELIBERATLY mistating” (deliberately misstating), “weather” (whether), “Duesbergs behalf” (Duesberg’s behalf).

    Similarly, the first letter of “english” is capitalized, as are all letters in “hiv” (sic).
    And “pigeon English” is a misspelling of “Pidgin English”, variant “pigion”.
    Perhaps your own difficulties, Pat, with the English language contribute to your continued insistence that Franklin and I don’t understand the quote you pasted (i.e. YOUR quotation OF Duesberg) was originally spoken or written by Duesberg, not you.

    No doubt, Pat, there are some top-notch ESL programs in your area that could help you with your writing, syntax, and reading comprehension. Do consider them. I apologize for going so far off course, but since your language abilities apparently currently prevent you from on-topic and coherent contributions, I felt compelled to don my off-topic pedant’s hat and give an English lesson for your (and, one would hope, our) benefit.

  77. #77 Poodle Stomper
    March 28, 2008

    PWNED!

  78. #78 SLC
    March 28, 2008

    Re pat

    “How about you, SLC…you called me a wackjob for pointing out the corruption in the housing market.”

    I did no such thing. I have not commented on the housing situation on this blog. However, in actuality, the situation there is actually very simple. What happened is that borrowers and lenders all acted on the hypothesis that the price of housing would continue to rise forever. Thus lenders lent money using adjustable rate mortgages with a lowball initial interest rate and little or no down payments. Borrowers accepted these loans on the premise that if they were unable to meet their mortgage payments, they could sell their property and pay of the mortgage with the proceeds, possibly even making a profit on the transaction. Unfortunately, the price of housing failed to achieve the increases of the past few years, and in fact went in the opposite direction as suddenly there was a surplus of available dwellings due to a sudden increase in foreclosures. It’s the simple law of supply and demand. If the supply exceeds the demand.

  79. #79 pat
    March 28, 2008

    “Re pat

    “How about you, SLC…you called me a wackjob for pointing out the corruption in the housing market.”- SLC

    You are mistaking me for…ehmm…kevin? Get your trolls in order.

  80. #80 Kevin
    March 28, 2008

    “Kevin I already said, you were right about housing bubble. You were wrong, its not a ponzi scheme, I will not explain you the diffrence again. You also said housing bubble will makes a great depression, USA will be a third world nation then scientists will get exposed bc their frauds. Thatis why your a conspiracy person.”- Adele

    Thank you, Adele, for providing yet another opportunity to expose your incredible ignorance, which is really remarkable given your continued arrogance. I’d also like to thank you for sparing me from your explanation of why the “housing market” is not a “ponzi scheme”. I’m sure your explanation would have been truly edifying, but I think I’ve got a pretty good handle on why it IS about as close to a ponzi scheme as one can get, and it looks like I’m not alone in that claim. Even if it’s taken most MSM members a few extra years to figure it out, there were plenty of regular folks, like me, posting the truth years ago, when the MSM was still stuck in “buy now, or be priced out forever” mode:

    On Ponzi Schemes and the Housing Bubble

    The Biggest Ponzi Scheme Ever?

    Wow, that last one is from 2005…my how the time passes. I remember first discovering that blog….anyway, as you can see, there are many out there who ARE smart enough to make the necessary connections and to see this bubble for what it is — a long, last gasp for an economy (and a society) that is dominated by corruption, an end for A 300 YEAR PONZI SCHEME.

    More later…

    Kevin

  81. #81 pat
    March 28, 2008

    I correctly get an english lesson and get …

    “PWNED!”

    …priceless

  82. #82 Poodle Stomper
    March 28, 2008

    Yep, you got PWNed by Elk. No shame in that.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pwn

  83. #83 pat
    March 28, 2008

    nope, I’ll take that justifiable hit.

    I know the origins of PWNED, thanks anyway.

  84. #84 Adele
    March 28, 2008

    Sorry KEv the site you gave says “While not truly a Ponzi scheme” like I said.

  85. #85 Adele
    March 28, 2008

    Kev could you remind me the connection between housing markets and vaccination causing immunology again.

  86. #86 franklin
    March 28, 2008

    Pat,

    You chose to paste in an obvious lie from Duesberg–a lie in which he claimed that studies are not done of asymptomatic HIV-infected individuals to identify factors that lead to AIDS.

    You failed to note that the statement from Duesberg that you chose to paste in is an obvious lie.

    Ergo–You are a disseminator of lies.

    I pointed out that you pasted in this lie and that you ignored its obvious falsehood.

    For some reason, you seem to have trouble facing up to the ugliness of your action.

    This does not surprise me.

  87. #87 Kevin
    March 28, 2008

    Sorry KEv the site you gave says “While not truly a Ponzi scheme” like I said.

    It’s a short blog entry, Adele. Interested readers here can read the entire post in a couple minutes, so there’s no reason for you to cherrypick the data.
    _________________________________

    Nevertheless, here’s an relevant excerpt that you, of course, neglect to mention:

    “You hear me say that the housing bubble is just a ponzi scheme – the biggest ponzi scheme of all time, the biggest financial bubble in human history.

    Well, let’s look at what a true ponzi scheme is, and then relate it to the housing bubble:

    From Wikipedia:

    A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investment operation that involves paying abnormally high returns (“profits”) to investors out of the money paid in by subsequent investors, rather than from net revenues generated by any real business.

    OK so far. “Abnormally high returns (“profits”) – that sounds like our friend the bubble. Why work for a living when you can just buy a condo, and earn 20%, 50%, 100% in 2 years? Boy, those are some abnormal returns aren’t they?

    Especially when you consider the return is much higher than 20%, 50% or 100%. Say you buy a $500,000 condo in Miami, for 5% down or $25,000, and it goes up 50%, or $250,000, heck, even before you move in. So $25,000 to make $250,000, that’s 10 times your money! Or a 1000% return! Now that would make Mr. Ponzi smile!

    And who’s paying those returns, those “profits”? Yup, you got it, the “subsequent investors” – the latecommers to the ponzi scheme, the new home buyers, the former renters, the folks getting in with no-down, no-doc, interest-only teaser-rate schemes.”
    ____________________________________

    So, apparently the author agrees with me. Hell, at this late stage of the game, anyone with an IQ above 85 can clearly see that this housing bubble was nothing if not a GIGANTIC ponzi scheme. Of course, you and SLC can continue to call me a conspiracy theorist until your own homes are taken in foreclosure (god forbid), but the fact remains that I predicted, on this blog, how this bubble would play out all the way back in the summer of 2006, and I was well aware of its ramifications 3 years prior to that date.

    __________________________________

    The author ends with:

    “So, class is out. I’d encourage you to read the whole wikipedia entry (and also their one for Housing Bubble), and do more research on historic ponzi schemes. This one will be written about for ages, and it’s been a fascinating case study all along, but it’s going to get real interesting now as it unravels.”

    I must say that I agree wholeheartedly with his assessment of the magnitude of the coming financial fallout; however, there’s is one other completely false and libelous comment made by you, Adele, that I’d like to address. Namely, I never said on this blog that the bursting of the housing bubble will “makes a great depression” as you stated earlier, but I will now go on record to say that given recent developments (hello Bear Stearns!) that very well could be the end result. A severe and prolonged recession is certainly in the offing. Perhaps, when we are a year or two into that recession, you’ll realize that you should have been a conspiracy theorist, too. Probably not, though since you and your colleagues here are Aetiology are the worst brand of sheeple — “entitlement junkies” who are in deep denial about our present predicament.

    _____________________________

    I’ve also stated several times how this is related to human health, which is the main topic of this blog, right? Fraud and Greed are responsible for this meltdown, and they are also the reason that healthcare is so poor and so unaffordable in this country, and of course, I wouldn’t want to leave out the effects of fraud and Greed on academic research. It’s all related, and you’ll realize that soon enough. IT’s all going to end very poorly for all of us because people like you Adele are too fucking stupid and too fucking arrogant to admit that all is not well in the ‘homeland’.

    Lastly, my discussions/predictions for the financial markets also serve to establish credibility. Character assassinations are far too common an occurrence on this pathetic blog, and the mob mentality embraced by most the posters here is indicative of just how polluted Academia is with indoctrinated blow-hards who actually know very little about the real world.

    For example, as has been posted numerous times here at Aetiology, one does not have to be an immunologist to realize that HIV Science is intellectually bankrupt. In fact, being a sanctioned and credentialed immunologist is actually a detriment to conducting good research in that field. It really is a sad state of affairs when non-scientists are the only ones who care about the integrity of the research process, because no matter what you or Tara or Dale (et al) say, most researchers care far too much about the financials (read: personal gain) of conducting research and that has to change.

    And change it will, but I have no doubts that the real “Denialists” on this site will defend the status quo until the bitter end, and mark my word, it will be a very b-i-t-t-e-r end!

    Kevin

  88. #88 Dr Ben
    March 29, 2008

    @Dale-

    I believe in vaccinations but one can’t help but note that a child who is not vaccinated has zero chance of developing a serious vaccine related complication and very little chance of developing the disease (especially now that the majority of children ARE vaccinated), let alone a serious complication of the disease which, although more common than a vaccine related complication, is still relatively rare. A child who is vaccinated has a lower than the already low chance of developing the disease or one of its complications but also a low chance of developing a complication related to the disease. All the probabilities involved are low – but the problems that they are associated with can be quite serious. I can see where a parent could have a hard time making a decision.

    Dale-I agree with you- I can understand why some parents have a hard time. What you say is above is accurate, but you don’t take it far enough. If enough parents decide not to vaccinate, then herd immunity is gone and the risk of disease skyrockets, putting unimmunized people or the small fraction of people who were immunized but didn’t develop immunity at risk of disease. There are a number of recent examples, notably diphtheria outbreaks after the breakup of the Soviet Union (health infrastructure was gone, and people just weren’t immunized), as well as substantial increases in whooping cough disease due to decreased rates of pertussis immunization in the UK, Scandinavia, Japan and certain areas of the US (e.g. Boulder, Colorado). More recently, decreased MMR immunization in the UK has resulted in measles outbreaks as well.

    So parents who choose not to immunize their kids due to fear of side effects are putting their kids and others at risk–and the magnitude of the risk increases rapidly when enough people jump on that bandwagon. I fear that it will take more outbreaks of disease (and probably deaths) in the US before American parents will realize the true balance of risks and benefits inherent in the vaccination decision.

    btw-I agree with someone who said it is a civil liberties issue. There’s a delicate balance when it comes to public health, but in the absence of an outbreak I think it’s better to convince people why it’s in their interest to vaccinate, rather than trying to force them. And I am a strong vaccine proponent in general (though I don’t support all vaccines just because they’re there. Each vaccine needs to prove itself.)

  89. #89 Molecular Entry Claw
    March 30, 2008

    Franklin,

    I see you’re of the opinion that the scientific proof that HIV causes AIDS is statistical analysis.

    Thank you for that clear admission.

    BTW, you’re lying. The experiment Duesberg suggests has not been carried out – and the “analysis” you link of decade old results is a joke that didn’t cause a ripple anywhere but in J.P. Moore’s pants.

    And please lay off the self-injection childishness. The statistical link proving “scientifically” that HIV causes AIDS from accidental needle pricks (self-injection), is still non-existent, which is why J.P. touts every single tenuous case he can dig up. Just to give you an idea of how desperate he is, let me quote the final sentence of the article he has linked as proof of his point. Under the headline “Nurse contracted HIV from patient”:

    The Health Protection Agency said there had only been five reported cases of UK healthcare workers contracting HIV from patients, the last of which was in 1999.

    According to J.P. Moore’s triumphantly linked article, no more than five UK healthcare workers have contracted HIV, never mind AIDS, from a patient in 25 years – until one single glove-wearing nurse got pneumonia.

    The “statistical proof” hand-picked by y’all’s favourite source of AIDStruth is just mind-blowing.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/england/london/7241951.stm

    PS. Tara, don’t you think it spreads unnecessary fear when a PhD can’t even get a simple word like “dihydroxygen monoxide” right? The only thing hurting the science of immunology more than this kind of ignorance is your incessant shooting at strawmen and softer than soft targets. In this case you have descended so low that even a few of your devoted followers are experiencing what might pass for embarrassment in ordinary people.

    People like you survive only by insulating themselves even more rigorously from real debate than they do from microbes.

    The failed Merck HIV trials is the vaccine story of the year. By what mystical editorial process does that continue to fly under your radar while a single typo or wrong word in scientifically irrelevant articles registers with such unfailing regularity?

  90. #90 Seo Teknikleri
    March 30, 2008

    thank you

  91. #91 ElkMountainMan
    March 30, 2008

    Somewhere towards the end of his rambling attacks on J.P. Moore and Tara Smith, our germ-denialist friend MEC, returning unexpectedly under a familiar name, brings up the “failed Merck HIV trials.”

    Interestingly, several of MEC’s favorite scientist targets had reservations about the immunological approach taken in the Merck trial, conflicting with MEC’s view of a monolithic conspiracy of science.

    But the facts are of little concern to MEC, as he demonstrates once again in the following accusation:

    People like you survive only by insulating themselves even more rigorously from real debate than they do from microbes.

    This from MEC, the exit artist, who leaves the (real) debate only to reappear weeks later under a new name.

  92. #92 Cathy
    March 30, 2008

    I’d like to lay down a challenge to all the self-confident science boffins on
    this site. I would happily be injected with HI virus if it were properly isolated
    and purified. I thought the whole system for testing and cross-matching blood
    was developed because of the well-recognised dangers of injecting foreign proteins
    into the bloodstream.
    If the virus could be isolated from an AIDS patient and cultured in normal (not
    leukaemic) human (in fact you could use mine) CD4 cells not toxified by phytohaemagglutinin
    (I soak and cook my kidney beans thoroughly to avoid this toxin, so I think it
    is reasonable not to want it injected directly into my bloodstream) and cultured
    for an appropriate time in a serum-free medium. Once these CD4 cell cultures have
    been centrifuged in the correct manner to remove all the other debris, and electron
    microscopy performed to confirm there is whole, viable HI virus in there I’m
    ready and waiting with my sleeve rolled up.
    Don’t wriggle out of this challenge by telling me HIV won’t infect normal, unadulterated
    CD4 cells because according to your theory it does exactly that in the normal
    human body. Neither can you evade this challenge by whining that it is “too
    hard” to culture healthy CD4 cells in vitro because that is patently nonsense
    - Sigma Aldrich have developed a wonderful product called Stemline
    T Cell Expansion Medium (Product Code S1694)
    .
    For the vaccine proponents, there are interesting admissions in the above document:
    “Serum (FBS). FBS often exhibits lot-to-lot variability and may potentially
    contain adventitious agents, viruses, or prions.” – mmm, yummy.
    AND
    “Also, FBS cultured cells should only be administered to patients once, since
    subsequent administrations may cause “serum sickness”; the patient’s
    immune system may be sensitized to bovine serum proteins, which can be caused
    by minute quantities of bovine protein carried on the surface of cultured cells,
    not removable [my emphasis] even after repeated wash steps.”
    What do they use to culture those vaccinations again? And what bits don’t wash
    off?

  93. #93 Poodle Stomper
    March 30, 2008

    Why go through all the trouble of culturing, contaminants and serum. I say just inject yourself with a plasmid encoding a confirmed pathogenic strain. Of course despite the ignorance displayed by most denialists, I don’t think you’ll have much luck finding a researcher would actually lack ethics enough to purposefully infect another person. And hey if you do find one, go for it and let me know how it turns out.

  94. #94 Chris Noble
    March 30, 2008

    Why go through all the trouble of culturing, contaminants and serum. I say just inject yourself with a plasmid encoding a confirmed pathogenic strain. Of course despite the ignorance displayed by most denialists, I don’t think you’ll have much luck finding a researcher would actually lack ethics enough to purposefully infect another person. And hey if you do find one, go for it and let me know how it turns out.

    https://www.aidsreagent.org/search_reagents.cfm
    Search for molecular clones, HIV-1, infectious.

    Surely there must be a “dissident” scientist who can access this program and order some plasmids.

  95. #95 Cathy
    March 30, 2008

    Chris thanks for the link – virus shopping huh? I quite fancied the HIV-1 group M subtype G but they only did them in Env and that is so not my colour. Now I did find HI virus purporting to be from Montagnier’s original patient (very odd given that he himself stated he hadn’t actually isolated it), but if it is whole virus, why hasn’t someone taken an EM photo of it yet? – I’d like to actually see what I’m getting. No, on balance and given that Sigma Aldrich themselves admit that FBS and other culture mediums are often contaminated with viruses and prions I think I’d rather risk a G-rated curry house in Calcutta. It’s a whole visualised virus or nothing for me – call me picky, but I wouldn’t buy a car without seeing it first.
    I also specified I didn’t want PHA-zapped PBMCs; now I know they can get those little babies out with recombinant HIV-Tat protein, but I make a point of avoiding the ingestion of anything lab-made until I’m confident your lot know your retrotransposons from your pantaloons and I’m far from this.
    I think as the recipient of this virus I should get to specify how it was produced and be able to actually see it first – that’s not unreasonable is it?

  96. #96 Poodle Stomper
    March 30, 2008

    Cathy, Catalog: 11412 Looks like it has full viruses from each clade, both SI and non-SI. Otherwise there are always plasmids, as I suggested earlier. Those don’t get exposed to FBS or PHA.

  97. #97 Cathy
    March 30, 2008

    Poodle Stomper (do PETA know about you?) I don’t want plasmid. I thought I made that clear. I don’t buy a car by choosing one of the wheels from a catalogue. Oh yes I’m sure it will ‘go’ if I push it hard enough down a hill, but it still isn’t a car is it?

  98. #98 Poodle Stomper
    March 30, 2008

    Whats wrong with a plasmid? All you need to do to verufy if it is a “car” is to look at the sequence. That will tell you right away. No fuss no muss and no PHA/FBS contaminants.

  99. #99 Poodle Stomper
    March 30, 2008

    And I’m sure I’m on PETA’s “to picket” list, ty.

  100. #100 ElkMountainMan
    March 30, 2008

    now I know they can get those little babies out with recombinant HIV-Tat protein

    Care to give us some references for this insight, Gene? Infectious virions from uninfected cells exposed to Tat? As I recall, last time we heard from you, you were telling us that Gardasil couldn’t possibly work because HPV doesn’t encode its own polymerase. Betraying a lack of virology savvy to make any undergrad intern, Duesberg’s or not, guffaw in derision.

    Or is “cathy” a non-Semon virus-existence denier with a dullingly similar fixation with (and misunderstanding of) electron microscopy?

  101. #101 ElkMountainMan
    March 30, 2008

    What happens if Cathy/Semon/Maniotis injects himself with several cc’s of a high-viral-load patient’s blood and comes down with HIV infection and AIDS?

    1) Denialist admits HIV is infectious;
    or (more likely),
    2) Denialist suggests some amount of (cocaine, alcohol, marijuana, mercury, some reactive oxygen species, trans fats, fluoride, Mycoplasma) in the blood of the patient caused the immunodeficiency in himself, the recipient.

    Now, what happens if Cathy/Semon/Maniotis injects himself with several cc’s of the most highly-purified virus ever produced in the most sophisticated laboratory in the world and still comes down with HIV infection and AIDS?

    1) Denialist admits HIV is infectious;
    or (more likely),
    2) Denialist suggests some trace amount of (FBS, IL-2, PHA, mercury, some reactive oxygen species, trans fats, fluoride, Mycoplasma) contaminating the prep caused the immunodeficiency in himself, the recipient.

    This is all very convenient for germ denialists. Safe in the knowledge that no infectious agent can be purified to 100% purity, they can always decline to inject themselves with the agent (an offer they usually use as an emotional appeal). And even better, since every potential cause of disease carries with it some sort of impurity, no cause can ever be determined (according to their standards). As such, the “cause” they assign to every effect is just as valid as any other. Best of all, they don’t need experimental skill or any particular knowledge.

  102. #102 Molecular Entry Claw
    March 30, 2008

    Sir Elkie as far as hit-and-run goes I seem to be in fine company with Papilloma, HIV, Hep. C and what have you.

    I must have missed Ms. Smith’s sage and prescient remarks on Merck’s HIV vaccine. As far as J.P. Moore goes, let’s play a game of “spot the self-contradiction”:

    I do not think that what happened in this trial is an example of scientists blindly rushing into dangerous things,” said John P. Moore, an AIDS virologist at Weill Cornell Medical College, who has criticized vaccine trials he considered futile. “In the general HIV-research community, I didn’t know anyone who said this was going to happen.”

    “Scientists aren’t rushing blindly into things because nobody saw (or they saw but didn’t say?) this coming”. LOL! Oh, but John, somebody did see this coming; unfortunately those people have been excluded from general HIV research, which is why I’m sure you used that qualiying adjective.

    Speaking of science ignorance, look at what that silly Washington Post journalist had the cheek to insinuate:

    The multiple surprises have reminded researchers how much they still do not know about HIV’s biology. It has also focused attention on questions they never asked.
    For example, none of the monkey experiments with the Merck vaccine subjected animals to the kind of sexual exposure that people in the trial had — namely, repeated encounters with low doses of HIV, with no single exposure being especially high-risk.

    Why not?

    The researchers did not have any reason to believe the vaccine might be harmful (although they acknowledged it might not be effective), and in any case such a study would have required quite a large number of monkeys, which are expensive to acquire and maintain for research.
    Instead, researchers vaccinated a relatively small number of monkeys with the Merck vaccine and then injected them with the monkey equivalent of HIV in a manner that guaranteed they would become infected. Those animals did much better over the long run than infected but unvaccinated ones.

    That was once enough to move a vaccine into human trials. But it probably never will be again.

    Imperfect animal models? Premature human trials? Nahh can’t be. I hope Tara will write a post about how safe and ethical HIV vaccine research is, put the Post in its place.

  103. #103 Molecular Entry Claw
    March 31, 2008

    Sir Elkie, you forgot something in your fine analysis:

    What happens if sceptic gets injected with “HIV” and doesn’t get AIDS?

    1. The apologists will say, “Aha CCR5 mutant!”

    2. The apologists will say “Oops weak HIV strain, so much about the biology of the bugger we don’t yet know.”

    But, Sir Elkie, really, I thought you’d be above all these euthanazing-denialists fantasies.

  104. #104 Chris Noble
    March 31, 2008

    What happens if sceptic gets injected with “HIV” and doesn’t get AIDS?

    Of course you need a statistically significant sample size.

    Can you find 100 Denialist scientists who are stupid enough to let themselves be infected with HIV?

  105. #105 Cathy
    March 31, 2008

    Elkmountainman I don’t have to have a PhD in scatology to know when shit stinks.
    I don’t have to be savvy with an EM to recognise the complete absence of a photo
    of a whole HI virus. You sound like you know one end of an EM from another – can
    you send me a picture? I didn’t claim the cells were “uninfected” –
    betraying your lack of reading skills – as the use of the word “dullingly”
    betrays your lack of English skills.
    Pray explain o savvy one how a virus knows whether it is in vitro or in
    vivo
    . Does it peer with its little eyes out of the CD4 cell in the petri dish
    and decide it doesn’t like the décor? No it has to be coaxed out with toxic
    PHA. Maybe AIDS is simply PHA disease? Their mothers were spliced with a raw kidney
    bean and the offspring inexplicably express endogenous PHA – allowing the shy
    HIV to be persuaded to leave the CD4 cell to go and infect another.
    Here is a reference to my comment about HIV-Tat. My, my – and I thought you lot
    kept up with the literature!

    1. Sahaf, B., et al., Culturing of human peripheral blood cells reveals unsuspected
    lymphocyte responses relevant to HIV disease. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 2008.

  106. #106 Poodle Stomper
    March 31, 2008

    MEC,

    “1. The apologists will say, “Aha CCR5 mutant!””

    Nope, simple PCR can detect whether she is CCR5 mutant or not. So no need to worry about that one.

    “2. The apologists will say “Oops weak HIV strain, so much about the biology of the bugger we don’t yet know.””

    This isn’t an issue if you take a confirmed pathogenic strain and check viral load in the initial stages to see if the infection took hold.

    Cathy,

    “Pray explain o savvy one how a virus knows whether it is in vitro or in vivo. Does it peer with its little eyes out of the CD4 cell in the petri dish and decide it doesn’t like the décor? No it has to be coaxed out with toxic PHA. Maybe AIDS is simply PHA disease?”

    Learn even a little a bit about immunology and HIV, Cathy, and you will find that HIV only very inefficiently infects resting T-cells. This isn’t a problem in the human body where, at any given time, it is exposed to antigens which cause some t-cells to be active. Further, you are ignoring immune activating signals passed from one cell subset to CD4 cells. But have no fear! You don’t necessarily need PHA to stimulate those cultured T-cells. Certain interleukins will do it too and those are naturally found in the human body. If you wish to continue to ignore the idea of using a cloned full length virus in a plasmid as a means to remove the chance of contaminations, there are also serum-free media recipes used for cell culturing. I’ve used some of these myself and they work just fine. So there you go; no serum, no PHA.

  107. #107 ElkMountainMan
    March 31, 2008

    Poodle Stomper’s excellent points notwithstanding, I agree with MEC that intentional injection of HIV or HIV-infected blood is for most intents a useless exercise. If the denialist became infected and developed AIDS, she would provide the scientific community at best a “+ 1″ to the ‘n’ of thousands who have already become infected by this route (transfusion, intentional or unintentional needle-sharing). Her fellow denialists, meanwhile, would scorn her and accuse her of secret drug use. If they could rule out all of their favorite culprits, they would make up something new: e.g., the psychological stress of needle insertion.

    If she claims not to be infected after injection, what has she accomplished? Again, very little. There will be a long list of questions for her that can be answered satisfactorily only if the “experiment” was rigorously designed and carried out…unlikely in the situation of all but a few current denialists. (As it was for Willner, who died of other causes before any effects of his own claimed injection could be observed.) And if she becomes infected but does not progress to AIDS? At most, she proves that she is a long-term non-progressor.

    So why all the fuss about injection? Emotion, PR. Injection wouldn’t prove much scientifically, but it would prove that the self-injecting denialist was honest in his or her belief that AIDS is not caused by a transmissible agent.

    I would of course oppose any large-scale study involving injection of HIV, since I have seen the effects of HIV on the human body and do not wish such ravages on any fellow being, denialist or otherwise. The individual denialist is free to do as he wishes though, if he wants to make an appeal to emotion.

    RE Cathy on
    the complete absence of a photo of a whole HI virus.

    Indeed, the virion is too small for visualization by photographic techniques. Hence, no “photo” of the virion. Hence, the use of electron microscopy. By “Cathy’s” standards, atoms do not exist, either, since there is no “photo” of the whole atom.

  108. #108 ElkMountainMan
    March 31, 2008

    It strikes me how “Cathy” (Eugene Semon, I presume) writes that HIV has to be coaxed out with toxic PHA. Maybe AIDS is simply PHA disease?….then follows up with a reference to a recent paper that shows the opposite.

    In the Sahaf et al article, the Herzenberg lab suggests that the closer the lab gets to recapitulating in vivo conditions (here, oxygen levels), the fewer “artificial” interventions are needed to prime cells for infection.

  109. #109 Poodle Stomper
    March 31, 2008

    Elk,
    I agree with you completely in that I would likewise never truly wish AIDS inflicted on anyone, denialist or not. But in the event that someone were to try to bluff a Duesbergian challenge, I would like to say, however, that just about any concerns of contamination or lack of purity can be overcome. But, I don’t know of any AIDS researcher amoral enough to actually willingly infect someone…and that is definitely not a bad thing.

  110. #110 DT
    March 31, 2008

    Can you find 100 Denialist scientists who are stupid enough to let themselves be infected with HIV?

    Chris, do stop being silly. You of all people know you can’t even find 100 denialist scientists, period.

  111. #111 Adele
    March 31, 2008

    DT stop being so silly your self. You know there’s 2500 denialist scientists bc Mr. Crow says so, period. Or massueses, whatever. Scientist, masseuse same thing for a denialist.

  112. #112 Molecular Entry Claw
    March 31, 2008

    But Sir Elkie, is merely changing the oxygen levels such a big deal? it seems (from the abstract) that PHA is still needed, and that WAS the point wasn’t it?

    On a more optimistic note, since Tat was no longer able to induce apoptosis under those conditions, it’s most fortunate that HIV has so many other weapons of mass cell destruction at its disposal.

  113. #113 Chris Noble
    March 31, 2008

    It strikes me how “Cathy” (Eugene Semon, I presume) writes that HIV has to be coaxed out with toxic PHA. Maybe AIDS is simply PHA disease?….then follows up with a reference to a recent paper that shows the opposite.

    While the word-salad, the high Kruger-Dunning rating, and the tendency to cite papers that say the opposite of what she implies is all quite similar to Semon I suspect that she is a different individual.

  114. #114 Chris Noble
    March 31, 2008

    DT stop being so silly your self. You know there’s 2500 denialist scientists bc Mr. Crow says so, period. Or massueses, whatever. Scientist, masseuse same thing for a denialist.

    I wonder how many of those prestigious high ranking scientists would a) understand what an infectious molecular clone is and b) be willing to be injected with a plasmid containing HIV DNA.

    Frank Fenner, Frank Macfarlane Burnet and Ian Clunies Ross injected themselves with myxoma virus to prove that it was not dangerous for humans. They didn’t come up with an endless string of excuses. They had the, as cooler would tell us, balls to stick to their convictions.

  115. #115 Poodle Stomper
    March 31, 2008

    Chris,
    I think that unless Cathy Googles or Wikipedias “Plasmid” she won’t know what it is, hence her saying “I don’t buy a car by choosing one of the wheels from a catalogue. Oh yes I’m sure it will ‘go’ if I push it hard enough down a hill, but it still isn’t a car is it?” Sadly, as you stated before, this is pure Dunning-Kruger

  116. #116 ElkMountainMan
    March 31, 2008

    MEC, you write,

    Sir Elkie, is merely changing the oxygen levels such a big deal? it seems (from the abstract) that PHA is still needed, and that WAS the point wasn’t it?

    You and I must have read different papers. If not, perhaps you would be so helpful, MEC, as to show me where in the following you find support for your “PHA is still needed”:

    Recombinant HIV-Tat (Tat) induces extensive apoptosis in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) cultured in typical CO(2) incubators, which are equilibrated with air (21% O(2)). However, as we show here, Tat apoptosis induction fails in PBMCs cultured at physiological oxygen levels (5% O(2)). Under these conditions, Tat induces PBMCs to divide, efficiently primes them for HIV infection, and supports virus production by the infected cells. Furthermore, Tat takes only 2 h to prime PBMCs under these conditions. In contrast, PHA/IL-2, which is widely used to prime cells for HIV infection, takes 2-3 days. These findings strongly recommend culturing primary cells at physiological oxygen levels. In addition, they suggest HIV-Tat as a key regulator of HIV disease progression. -Bita Sahaf, et al, PNAS, 25 March 2008.

    According to my reading of this paper, the authors included Tat-only conditions during both the ‘priming’ and the ‘support’ phases of infection, and found Tat at physiological oxygen levels superior to more “artificial” stimulation methods.

    More relevant to this thread, Sahaf et al in their Discussion note that Robert Gallo and colleagues have repeatedly called attention to the possibly pivotal importance of an anti-Tat component in a successful vaccine.

    Chris Noble, you’re quite right about “Cathy” and “Semon”; I don’t know the identity of either, nor do I care. I was only hoping to provoke the latter into answering the question of why Gardasil cannot work if HPV, like so many DNA viruses, doesn’t splurge on its own DNA-dependent DNA polymerase.

  117. #117 Cathy
    March 31, 2008

    Congratulations Whelkmountainboy – you have demonstrated your devastating microcephaly for as long as your ignorant comment stays on this blog.

    “Indeed, the virion is too small for visualization by photographic techniques. Hence, no “photo” of the virion. Hence, the use of electron microscopy. By “Cathy’s” standards, atoms do not exist, either, since there is no “photo” of the whole atom.”

    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1974 Jan;71(1):1-5.
    Scanning transmission electron microscopy at high resolution.
    Wall J, Langmore J, Isaacson M, Crewe AV.
    We have shown that a scanning transmission electron microscope with a high brightness field emission source is capable of obtaining better than 3 A resolution using 30 to 40 keV electrons. Elastic dark field images of single atoms of uranium and mercury are shown which demonstrate this fact as determined by a modified Rayleigh criterion. Point-to-point micrograph resolution between 2.5 and 3.0 A is found in dark field images of micro-crystallites of uranium and thorium compounds. Furthermore, adequate contrast is available to observe single atoms as light as silver.

    AND

    Science. 1970 Jun 12;168(3937):1338-1340.
    Visibility of Single Atoms.
    Crewe AV, Wall J, Langmore J.
    Theoretical and experimental studies indicate that, with a high-resolution scanning electron microscope, it is now possible to obtain pictures of a single heavy atom resting on a thin carbon substrate.

    BTW an atom of silver is only ¼ nm in diameter as compared to the claimed 80nm for HI virus. If the Kruger-Dunning hat fits Whelky – you are certainly wearing it now.

  118. #118 Chris Noble
    April 1, 2008

    Congratulations Whelkmountainboy – you have demonstrated your devastating microcephaly for as long as your ignorant comment stays on this blog.

    Cathy if you want people to think that you have obtained all your knowledge about HIV from reading Denialist websites then by all means continue to refer to photographs of HIV. The only ignornace you are highlighting is your own.

    If you are interested in electron micrographs then there are many papers in the literature with good electron micrographs of HIV.

    Fine structure of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and immunolocalization of structural proteins.
    Gelderblom HR, Hausmann EH, Ozel M, Pauli G, Koch MA. Virology. 1987 Jan;156(1):171-6.

    Ultrathin section and surface replica electron microscopy were applied in combination with immunoelectron microscopy to elucidate the fine structure of HIV. The shell of the tubular core shows p24 antigenicity, while p17 is located at the inner leaflet of the lipid membrane. The virus particle is studded with 70-80 protrusions. These knobs have a diameter of 15 nm, a height of 9 nm, and are probably arranged in a T = 7 I symmetry. The major envelope protein gp120 is spontaneously shed from the viral surface. A possible role of released gp120 in pathogenesis is discussed.

    I fully expect you to come up with some excuse as to why these “photos” don’t meet your highly scientific personal standards but this still does not explain why you would be reluctant to be injected with plasmids containg HIV DNA. What possible harm could a few thousand bps of DNA do?

  119. #119 Molecular Entry Claw
    April 1, 2008

    Dr. Noble, if you you want your red ears electron-micrographed for the Science Pretenders Hall of Shame and posted next to Sir Elkie’s, please continue to elaborate on that word “photograph”, so everybody can see that’s the best y’all got while Cathy keeps coming up with references that shows you wouldn’t know an EM from the doodles you are wont to make with whatever hand is not occupied under the desk.

    Alternatively you can refer her to more HIV-1 “clones” when she asks for virions from fresh uncultured plasma.

    No, tell you what, the best thing would be to come up with some old “HIV” photos (excuse my technically imprecise language, you can continue to think of them as crayons)fully expecting them to get shot down for the crap they are, which is why you immediately loop back to plasmids, clones and eugenics. Heck, we all gotta play to the audience once in awile don’t we?

    But Dr. Noble these “photos” can’t be of HIV by anybody’s personal scientific standards because Sir Elkie says HIV is too small for photos. He doesn’t say it’s too small for electron-microscopy, but he doesn’t mention micrographs, so by your own strict standards for precise language, there can’t be any micrographs of “HIV”.

    BTW, Cathy said HIV measures 80nm. Do you agree with that? What size should the particle in the crayon have to be identified as HIV? Could a 40nm particle be HIV? How about a 180nm particle?

    Sir Elkie, the “study” I’ve read is the same abstract as you, and I read exactly the same as you:

    According to my reading of this paper, the authors included Tat-only conditions during both the ‘priming’ and the ‘support’ phases of infection, and found Tat at physiological oxygen levels superior to more “artificial” stimulation methods.

    However, the abstract also says this, which made me wonder about the Tat-only part:

    Tat apoptosis induction fails in PBMCs cultured at physiological oxygen levels

    Now I’m sure you won’t forgive my ignorance, but whatever “cultured” means here it looks to be something apart from the expected Tat-induced apoptosis. But if you’re telling me they used Tat as the culturing medium I of course accept that along with your remarks on crayons and atoms.

    Likewise, in the conclusion:

    These findings strongly recommend culturing primary cells at physiological oxygen levels. In addition, they suggest HIV-Tat as a key regulator of HIV disease

    The authors recommend physiological oxygen levels; not a word about exchanging tit for Tat when culturing.

    So Mr. WordGameMan, do you see where doubts could arise from the wording of this abstract? Or do you prefer to talk about plasmids, clones and freudian self-injection fantasies with both hands under the table while typing?

  120. #120 ElkMountainMan
    April 1, 2008

    Cathy and MEC, this is not a word game. I wouldn’t trust a doctor who refered to cartilage as bone, or who confused the esophagus and trachea. Similarly, someone who thinks that HIV has never been imaged and who further refers to micrographs as photographs demonstrates a profound ignorance of the subject. Remember, an internet search engine is not a substitute for critical thinking and a grounding in fundamentals.

    Cathy, if you’re interested, I encourage you to consult any standard textbook on microscopy, which will contain the theory (including maths) you can use to understand the difference between light and electron microscopy. There’s no shame in lack of knowledge, only in flaunting it. Knowledge deficits can be corrected.

    As MEC correctly notes, electron micrographs are not photographs. Light-based techniques (which allow “photography”) are subject to a “limit of diffraction”. This means that with standard light microscopy, one cannot differentiate particles smaller than a certain size: about 200 to 400 nanometers depending on your setup. Although numerous recent techniques have been applied to lowering this limit, including fluorescence applications, optical reconstruction, and materials-based approaches like ultra-thin lenses, the end product of at least some of these techniques is also not strictly speaking a “photograph”.

    There’s been some fascinating work of late applying these new techniques to imaging HIV complexes inside the cell, yielding new insights into where the virus uncoats, how it gets to the nucleus, the reverse transcription assembly, etc.: studies for which EM is not well-suited. I’m not familiar with work visualizing virions on their own in these ways, although there may well be some such studies out there.

  121. #121 ElkMountainMan
    April 1, 2008

    MEC,

    You might find a few answers to your questions in the Sahaf et al article, were you to read beyond the abstract.

  122. #122 Molecular Entry Claw
    April 1, 2008

    Sorry, Sir Elkie, no access from here. If only those scientist could express themselves clearly. But I guess you were talking about stimulants when you said “Tat-only”. So Tat primes cells for reception of HIV and assists in reproduction. But that’s hardly news is it? I thought the news was that Tat does not induce apoptosis. Now how are we gonna get rid of all those bystander cells? But ok, if you don’t feel like talking about it that’s fine.

    It is too bad that you’re not familiar with visualizing virions. But then again you’d probably tell us to read the studies for ourselves. Fortunately there are people less miserly than yourself who can help us understand the many fascinating discoveries brought about by all this newfangled technology. Here’s one about “HIV’s Unique Nucleus Leapfrogging Properties” (The Journal of Cell Biology, Vol. 159, Number 3, November 11, 2002).

    The most striking results of the study, however, do not derive from studies of specific particle or nuclear labeling with reverse transcriptase, but from their tracking of a putative albeit ill-defined “HIV” capsid protein, Vpr. Because of the elegant high resolution motion analysis of this molecule obtained by McDonald, Borisy, Hope, and their colleagues, it is crystal clear from the movement tracking records they present in figure 3 of their paper when they follow Vpr, that even though the tracked labeled particles approach and traverse across the nuclear area of the cells, they never enter the nucleus, or if they do, they quickly exit it again, and are unchanged with respect to their surface expression of the fluorescently labeled Vpr molecules used to track their motion (which, if retroviral in nature, should be dissolved or shed at some point at least in order to allow the viral genome to integrate into the nuclear genome). In other words, because the Vpr motion analysis is not obscured by the so called “viral specific” reverse-transcriptase Alexa-594-dUTP, the presented data shows that one Vrp-labeled particle tracked over time in Figure 3 both enters and leaves the nucleus no less than 3 times, or after 3 attempts, it never enters the nucleus. Another particle in the same tracking data in Figure 3 also enters and leaves no fewer than 3 times. However, and as the authors show us in the tracking data, we cannot assume that the particles entered the nucleus even though they had 3 ample opportunities, because no change in the Vpr signal associated with the particles is detectable, as the particles “enter and re-enter” the region of the nuclear border, and leave again. Of course, the more plausible explanation for these Vpr motion data, are that none of these tracked particles, or any other labeled particles tracked during the study ever enter a nucleus at all, they are not retroviral particles, and therefore, do not act consistently with the first “accepted” requirement of a retrovirus particle: to enter a host cell nucleus in order to integrate its genome with that of the host cell.

  123. #123 gene
    April 1, 2008

    “now I know they can get those little babies out with recombinant HIV-Tat protein”

    Is this “tat” question directed at insignificant me? It means trans activator of transcription … (in the spirit of our leaders and their desire to highlight basic science …)

    And no, I would not be injected by plasmids with HIV genomes …

    “Care to give us some references for this insight, Gene? Infectious virions from uninfected cells exposed to Tat?”

    Is this little puzzle meant to sharpen our knowledge of “basic science” Elkie? Since I wasn’t the poster perhaps I can help but I will need you to elaborate.

    “As I recall, last time we heard from you, you were telling us that Gardasil couldn’t possibly work because HPV doesn’t encode its own polymerase. Betraying a lack of virology savvy to make any undergrad intern, Duesberg’s or not, guffaw in derision.

    “Or is ‘cathy’ a non-Semon virus-existence denier with a dullingly similar fixation with (and misunderstanding of) electron microscopy?”

    So Elkie in case I missed it, how is a virus supposed to replicate AS A VIRUS and not as a “minute chromosome” without it’s own polymerase? And how is Guardisil supposed to work if in fact there is no “cell-free transmission” of authentic HPV virions? And what in hell does this have to do with electron micoscopy?

    But since you brought it up, let me say for the record that EMs of stressed cells can indeed show virus-like particles (retrovirus) with electron-dense cores. I wonder … what could all those electrons concentrated in one place possibly indicate?

    And, like the (apparently endless) Iraq War, the basic objective announced 24 years ago – a vaccine in a few years – remains forever just out of reach. So now the scientific leadership has resorted to satirizing themselves with a call for a “return” to fundamental science?

    Duuuhhh … how come we can’t get a vaccine that works for hiv … i dunno … fauci says we need to go back to basics … you know science and knowledge and stuff like that …

  124. #124 Adele
    April 1, 2008

    Wow when Gene says stuff I’m like, WHA?

  125. #125 pat
    April 1, 2008

    “Pat,

    You chose to paste in an obvious lie from Duesberg–a lie in which he claimed that studies are not done of asymptomatic HIV-infected individuals to identify factors that lead to AIDS.

    You failed to note that the statement from Duesberg that you chose to paste in is an obvious lie.

    Ergo–You are a disseminator of lies.

    I pointed out that you pasted in this lie and that you ignored its obvious falsehood.

    For some reason, you seem to have trouble facing up to the ugliness of your action.

    This does not surprise me.”

    The ugliness of my action apparently lies in pasting D’s response to the question of injecting himself with HIV. You claim I knew it was a lie. How should I know it to be a lie if it weren’t for you telling me so??

  126. #126 Chris Noble
    April 1, 2008

    Sorry, Sir Elkie, no access from here. If only those scientist could express themselves clearly.

    It may come as a surprise to you but scientists don’t generally plan on scientifically illiterate idiots pretending to understand a paper after reading the abstract.

    I made it clear to Cooler. I’ll make it clear to you.

    The various people who respond to your rants are not doing so because they are in awe of your intellect. They are not afraid that HIV/AIDS is a going to collapse if you can get your “truth” out to the public. They are responding because you are an amusing lunatic. They are laughing at you. If you wish to be the source of amusement then by all means continue.

  127. #127 franklin
    April 2, 2008

    The ugliness of my action apparently lies in pasting D’s response to the question of injecting himself with HIV. You claim I knew it was a lie. How should I know it to be a lie if it weren’t for you telling me so??

    You quoted Duesberg saying that no studies are done of asymptomatic HIV-infected people to identify viral and non-viral risks for development of AIDS.

    But, on this very same Blog, you have participated in other discussions that dealt with just such studies.

    You don’t like to think of yourself as a disseminator of lies, but then you go around disseminating lies.

  128. #128 MEC
    April 2, 2008

    Wow Dr. Noble, who could possibly continue this after being both refuted and rebuked in such a convincing and scientific manner by someone who surely knows what he is talking about, or. . . Well some of those Serious and Responsible Scientists must be afraid of something cuz they write op-eds all over the place, collect signatures and call their brothers to arms thusly:

    What can HIV professionals do about the continued activities of the AIDS denialists? First, be aware of efforts to counter their campaign of misinformation. HIV scientists and activists have established a website for this purpose at http://www.AIDStruth.org. We encourage IAS members to read the information posted on this site and forward the link to friends and colleagues. Background
    information and supporting documentation for a number of the events and issues covered in this article is available on the website at http://www.AIDStruth.org/iasnewsletter. Second, challenge AIDS denialism and all pseudoscience whenever it appears in the legitimate local and national press. For
    example, HIV professionals might consider whether they wish to support in any way magazines like Harper’s and Discover that give space to AIDS denialists. Third, if AIDS denialism surfaces within your own institution, particularly if students become involved, bring the weight of yourinfluence and scientific knowledge to rebut its spurious claims.

    Gee, Dr. Noble, that doesn’t look like a barrel of laughs to me, so perhaps the last one’s on you after all?

  129. #129 Chris Noble
    April 2, 2008

    Gee, Dr. Noble, that doesn’t look like a barrel of laughs to me, so perhaps the last one’s on you after all?

    I am concerned that some people might be influenced by Duesberg or other semi-respectable HIV Denialists. I think that the correct attitude is to vigorously oppose the leaders of the Denialist movement.

    The same does not apply to you, cooler or your other scientifically illiterate conspiracy theory friends. You are just amusement.

  130. #130 MEC
    April 2, 2008

    Lol! Dr. Noble, I will make sure to quote your gracious admission that some sceptics are “semi-respectable”. And I am honoured to be placed repeatedly in the same league as Cooler, although my comedic style is quite different.

    Allow me to return the compliment by saying that your own sneering J.P. Moore impression isn’t that bad either.

    Anyway, if none of you want to talk about the issues, that’s fine with me. I’ll just leave you to your Serious and Responsible discussion about clones, eugenics and polaroids.

  131. #131 Kevin
    April 2, 2008

    “The same does not apply to you, cooler or your other scientifically illiterate conspiracy theory friends. You are just amusement.”

    Now..now, Dr IgNoble, you might want to consult with Adele regarding the merits of labeling those of us with whom you disagree as “conspiracy theorists”. After all, we “conspiracy theorists” are being proven right with each passing day (see the economic fallout that “this” conspiracy theorist predicted on this blog over 2 years ago when other sheeple, like you, called a conspiracy theorist for doing so).

    Of course when you resort to such name-calling, you are simply exposing yourself for the highly unscientific prick that you are, because as I (and other “denialists”) have pointed out numerous times here, one does not need to invoke “conspiracy” to expose the shortcomings of the current highly politicized nature of medicine.

    _________________________________________
    Nevertheless, here is further proof that that the general public is becoming less and less enamoured with the status quo that you so vociferously defend, Chris Noble. Me thinks thou doth protest too much:

    Vaccine-autism question divides parents, scientists

    From the link, I particularly like the comment posted by one reader (Bignumone), a Scientist, no less. It seems he shares my low opinion of the current highly politicized academic environment:

    “I am a scientist of many years. I find the arrogance of my peers to be incredible. The statements I hear from scientists on this issue are so absolute and dogmatic it disturbs me to no end. This is science, not religion!”

    Ahh, the sheeple are rubbing their eyes and finally waking up to the fact that all is not well in our financially and morally bankrupt country…and CNN will finally have to start reporting the truth. I wonder when Tara will also see the scientific merits of reporting the truth?

    As I’ve noted before, economic catastrophes have a tendency to produce renewed accountability…too little, too late, of course (Hi Adele).

    Kevin

  132. #132 Cooler
    April 2, 2008

    “I made it clear to Cooler. I’ll make it clear to you.”

    Mec,
    In order to understand how dumb Chris Noble and his pals are one only needs to read his exchange with Dr. Darin Brown when he asked for the scientific evidence that proved HIV’s causality in 1986, after all as Dr. Brown noted this was when The IOM dedicated 2 billion per annum for HIV research, every doctor was taught in medical school that HIV was the cause of AIDS, the blood supply was screened etc. The papers Noble cites as proving causation are laughable, and very revealing on why these idiots will never have a public debate. Dr. Brown found the responses so pathetic, he realized he was dealing with nutjobs, so he left, never to post here since, something I tried to do, but some of these idiots like Noble and poodle stomper couldn’t stop talking about me.

    Here is the exchange between Brown and Noble.

    Apparently Tara closed the “Denialism they don’t remember” thread, so I must resort to putting a response to other posts here.

    Thank you Chris Noble for at least having the courtesy of responding to my lengthy post from a couple weeks ago.

    Chris Noble said:

    “As usual Drain [sic] Brown totally misunderstands the nature of the problem. It is encumbent upon the Denialists to demonstrate to the scientific community that any of their theories have any merit.”

    What a load of horseshit. YOU’RE the ones spending billions of dollars. YOU’RE the ones pumping people full of highly toxic ARVs. YOU’RE the ones instilling terror in people. YOU’RE the ones calling on people to be fired and hoping their careers be ruined. What a load of horseshit.

    I’ve been looking for ELEVEN years to find ANY justification for what you people are doing. I haven’t found an acceptable answer yet. Yes, it’s true I’ve been supplied with a few papers ON OCCASION such as Chris Noble did above, but none of these even come close to establishing causation. Apologists would say it’s because I “don’t understand the science” or “don’t understand the papers”. I say it’s because the papers don’t prove what you say they do. And I’m willing to put my reputation and career on the line to take it to the people to let them decide for themselves and let them take away power away from the establishment which is the only way this entire affair will ever end. This is a political problem, 100%, and political revolution is the only solution.

    “Denialists suffer from the delusion that the world revolves around them.”

    I don’t think the world revolves around ANYone.

    “There are plenty of cranks on the internet demanding that people prove Einstein’s relativity to them.”

    Which is entirely irrelevant to this.

    “Duesberg and Bialy have demonstrated that they will ignore any evidence presented to them.”

    What evidence?? For gods sake don’t say Ascher or Schecter or Darby. Really, Chris, you’re like a friggin broken record.

    In my estimation, apologists have demonstrated that THEY will ignore any evidence presented to THEM: Piatak, Padian, Rodriguez, and so on. Yes, I know there are “responses” to each of these (usually some form of childish taunting on AIDStruth or somewhere else, the equivalent of “nanny-nanny-nanny, YES SO YES SO YES SO, well I triple-dog-dare you, what about that??”), eventually it will be left both to those scientists who work outside HIV or aren’t emotionally attached to it, or finally to the general public to recognize how shitty and pathetic the orthodox responses to them have been. As I’ve pointed out before, the main reasons there is such a consensus at the moment are:

    1. Financial (money at stake)
    2. Cultural (science is as much a society/culture as anything else, you’re brought up into it)
    3. Political (pressure to conform, with severe consequences for those who don’t)
    4. Emotional/Social (doctors can’t give up HIV because it would diminish the priestly role over life and death they’ve acquired in the past several decades)
    5. Saving face (self-explanatory)

    There are cases in the literature where scientists and doctors literally HALLUCINATED evidence for disease causation. They were certain at the time that they were seeing “evidence” for such causation, but in time, it was shown their notions were completely wrong and their interpretations and observations entirely a product of their mental state and loss of touch with reality.

    As long as these forces are in place among those in power in science and medicine, HIV will continue to mesmerize the minds of medical scientists just as ecclesiastic and religious debates about angels on the head of a pin and requirements for salvation mesmerized the religious elite for centuries, and they will be powerless to see reality in front of their face.

    It will also continue to hold political sway. The HIV hypothesis is purely, 100% a POLITICAL problem, NOT a scientific problem. The evidence was non-existent 20-25 years ago, and it’s even less existent now.

    Since the HIV hypothesis is purely a political problem, POLITICAL INTERFERENCE is the ONLY solution to this problem. The people MUST take power away from those holding this PHENOMENON in place. This is why this issue MUST be taken to the PEOPLE. The people are not emotionally wed to the hypothesis, and they will recognize the enormous chasm between the hypothesis and reality sooner than anyone else.

    “I could go through and find some of these key papers, for instance Jay Levy’s isolation of ARV in 1984 that replicated Gallo’s and Montagniers work, Weiss’s demonstration that HIV binds to receptors on CD4+ cells. There are several other key papers published in this time period. These are what convinced the scientific community.”

    Let it be written for posterity that Chris Noble offered the following papers published between May 1984 and October 1986 as proof of the HIV hypothesis:

    1. Montagnier’s paper — a paper which even Montagnier at the time didn’t think proved anything re: causation

    2. Gallo’s 4 Science papers — where HIV could only be “isolated” in 26 of 72 “AIDS” patients, and in which HIV could only be “isolated” by stimulating cell cultures with IL-2 and PHA and detecting certain phenomena ASSUMED to be proof of the presence of a retrovirus, hardly proof of anything

    3. Levy’s “isolation” of ARV — again, HIV could only be “isolated” in 22 of 45 patients with AIDS, only marginally more “frequent” (!) than Gallo’s attempt

    These 3 papers are completely laughable in establishing causation. The best that can be said is that after taking cells from AIDS patients and subjecting them to enormous mitogenic stimulation, SOME of them began producing effects INTERPRETED by SOME as evidence of an infectious exogenous retrovirus.

    How on earth this proves ANYthing is beyond me. All it’s saying is [assuming "isolation" is really "isolation"], “Look! We ‘isolated’ HIV from a fraction of ‘AIDS’ patients! It must be the cause!!”

    What a friggin joke. If this is your idea of the foundation upon which to devote $2 US billion per annum and a massive educational campaign, you’ve got one more screw loose than I thought.

    4. Weiss demonstration that HIV binds to receptors on CD4 cells — despite the fact we now know that almost all “HIV particles” lack the gp120 spikes supposedly necessary to “bind” to CD4 cells, rendering them essentially non-infectious and therefore pathogenically irrelevant

    Nice try, Chris. But I have to at least give you enormous credit for offering a response at all.

    “Dairn [sic] also ignores several papers such as those by Ascher et al, Schechter et al and Darby et al that have specifically dealt with and refuted Duesberg’s claims.”

    Oh, give me a break. Duesberg’s responses to all 3 of these are out there for anyone to read on the internet and make up their own mind. Schechter, if I recall, wouldn’t even share his god-damn data, rendering the entire study completely worthless on that point alone.

    Even if one grants the studies prove what they say (and I’m not granting that), all 3 of these are purely epidemiological studies. All they prove is a correlation at best. Alone, they don’t prove the HIV hypothesis at all. I’m almost embarrassed explaining this to you.

    It all comes down to what I wrote almost 2 years ago in the magnificent pipedream (a document that is still extremely instructive and would be to relative newcomers to this blog, simply go to Harvey’s page and scroll down to “a magnificent pipedream” under “insurgency blogging”):

    “The epidemiology is supposedly used to justify the biological ‘quest’ for how HIV kills T cells or causes ‘AIDS’, yet at the same time, the epidemiology REQUIRES some kind of biological justification to move itself from beyond the realm of epidemiological surveillance tool and into the realm of gestalt diagnosis. The biology is supposed to justify the epidemiology, yet at the same time, the epidemiology is supposed to justify the biology. Another example of the ubiquitous circular logic of ‘AIDS science’. Caveat emptor.”

    All of your “epidemiological” (I put that word in parentheses given in my own experience — granted, primarily with HIV/AIDS — that its illogical practices strain the label of “scientific discipline” to its limits) “evidence” is based on WHAT?? HIV ANTIBODY TESTS?? And what are the antibody tests based upon? Proof that the HIV tests are sensitive and specific for HIV. Which is itself based upon some clear knowledge of what the hell “HIV” is in the first place. If your BIOLOGICAL understanding of the nature of “HIV” is all screwed up, then all the epidemiological evidence in the world is just being misinterpreted at best or contrived at worst. It all comes down to what I was taught as a mathematician — YOU HAVE TO UNDERSTAND YOUR BASIC DEFINITIONS AND NOTIONS FIRST or else all the rest of your thinking will be completely nonsensical.

    Likewise, the biological “evidence” in these early papers is entirely based on the notion that HIV is sexually transmitted and that “AIDS” is a coherent infectious disease. Who in their right MIND — without ALREADY accepting the notion that HIV and AIDS are both infectious and sexually transmitted would for a second consider Montagnier, Gallo, and Levy’s papers as proof of JACK SQUAT???

    “If science worked the way that Denialists pretend then we would still be trying to convince phogiston proponents that oxygen exists.”

    What a load of crap. The problem is not that science “works a certain way”, it’s that scientists are human like everyone else, and once the scientific process gets off on false branch of reasoning (which it inevitably will at times), the process of science itself will force science down that false branch of reasoning unless some external force is applied to make it conform more to reality. The process of hypothesis generation, experimentation, observation, and modification only works if all agents are allowed to pursue all avenues of investigation. When one narrow branch is pursued and all others completely cut off, IF that branch happens to be wrong, then the scientific process will continue working away and away, generating ad hoc hypotheses and further explanations and more and more branches in all and every conceivable direction will shoot off, desperately trying to “find” the branch of reality that has been cut off. As Feyerabend said, “VARIETY OF OPINION IS NECESSARY FOR OBJECTIVE KNOWLEDGE.” And the variety of opinion was certainly cut off prematurely in 1984-86, and the result has been predictable.

    Trrll offered the following in response to my question (again, such response is appreciated):

    “It is likely that much of the work that convinced people in the field was not actually published by that time. What typically occurs when a hot result is published is that labs all over the world jump on it and start trying to replicate it and extend it. After a year and a half, little of that work will have been published, but scientists in the field will be talking to one another about it, and will have a good idea of whether other labs are able to confirm it. So all of the people actually working in the field will know if the ‘buzz’ is favorable or unfavorable, and this is one point at which a new theory can collapse. So it is hardly surprising that after 17 months there was general agreement among virologists that the evidence for the virus was strong enough to support a major effort. Then there is a second phase in which those results are published, and begin to convince clinicians and scientists who are working on other aspects of the disease. [Followed by a link to the ever-popular NIAID/NIH "factsheet"]”

    and later

    “By ‘buzz,’ I am referring to the less formal communications between scientists that precede formal publication. Scientists in a field generally have a good idea whether a research direction is proving fruitful before the papers come out. Considering the potential importance of the discovery, everybody jumped on it, trying to reproduce and extend the results. This often happens in science when there is a possible breathrough. If the follow-up studies fail, then everybody drops that direction en masse, and the blip in funding dies out quickly. It is not a matter of faith — it is a matter of following up a potentially important result to find out whether it is valid or a blind alley as quickly as possible. And as we know, the follow-up studies supported the initial findings, and the rest is history.”

    and from another post:

    “There are many points at which the HIV hypothesis could have faltered based on subsequent work: if Duesberg’s original claims that HIV was not present in many AIDS patients had been confirmed once sensitive PCR tests had become available, if people had been found to mount an effective immune response to HIV as Duesberg claimed, if anti-HIV drugs had not been found to postpone the onset of AIDS in clinical trials and in the practical experience of AIDS doctors, if a plausible mechanism for HIV infection of cells of the immune system had not been found, etc., etc.”

    This forms the ENTIRE extent (unless I’ve missed something, do point out) of Trrll’s “response” to my query for what convinced the IOM to devote $2 US billion per annum in the name of the HIV hypothesis.

    WHAT A LOAD OF ****ING HORSESHIT.

    REALLY, HOW CAN ANY OF YOU PEOPLE READ THIS ABSOLUTELY PATHETIC CRAP WITH A STRAIGHT FACE?? WHAT THE **** IS THE MATTER WITH YOU PEOPLE READING THIS BLOG?????????

    Meanwhile, “ElkMountain” (whoever he/she is) offers the following wonderfully insightful commentary on the nature of scientific process:

    “Think about the denialist fantasy of what really happened in the 1980s. What if it were true that two or three labs misled the entire world with nothing more than correlations? What if your IOM was premature with its statement? What if?… Answer: everyone involved in the scam would have been sliced to pieces, their careers ruined, mercilessly and within a few years, by hordes of skeptical scientists. And if there was a ‘gravy train’ in play, then doubly. With nothing more than correlation supporting HIV and AIDS, rival scientists would have found a more plausible explanation, double-time, and steered all the money into their own labs…. Instead, the hordes of skeptical scientists, to the disappointment of many of them, could only confirm the HIV link to AIDS again and again. Thousands of experiments later, there still is no alternative explanation for AIDS that holds up in the lab… If any rethinker reading this has a better explanation for AIDS, don’t keep it to yourself. Experiment, support, and publish, and you will become the most famous scientist of our time.”

    And then we have “Dr. Duke” from the complete outer edges of the universe, claiming Callen and Ashe never took recreational or pharmaceutical drugs (WTFF???) or that they claimed this themselves (WRONG on both counts, as anyone even REMOTELY familiar with ANYthing knows):

    “HIV-infected people such as Michael Callen and Arthur Ashe who lead very ‘clean’ and healthy lives, died of AIDS… My point was that…denialists simply ‘rethink’ the issue and declare that Michael Callen must have been lying about his healthy lifestyle”

    Then the Small Inquisitor proceeds to offer the following VIRTUOSIC double-talk and side-stepping that would make even Bill “it depends what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is” Clinton proud as a peacock:

    “That NY Press article was published BEFORE the LA Coroner’s report into the death of Ms Maggiore’s daughter became publicly available. That report proves that MS Maggiore is HIV-infected because it shows that her daughter died of AIDS, with p24 antigens detected in her brain tissues (I think it is safe to discount the incredibly unlikely possibility that the daughter acquired her HIV infection from any source other than her mother). Once the LA Coroner’s report became available, it therefore provided solid medical evidence on the HIV infection status of Ms Maggiore, evidence that outweighs Ms Maggiore’s own, and conflicting public statements on the issue.”

    And Chris again:

    “How can you ignore the natural history studies that show a much higher mortality in people that are infected with HIV?”

    as if Chris has never even HEARD of the perth group

    Really, I’m serious. I don’t know WHAT the **** is the problem with you people.

    The posts on this blog have gone beyond attempts at scientific discussions or even political rantings or even ill-mannered personal attacks, and have entered the realm of HISTORICAL DOCUMENTS for future generations to ponder over the absolutely stunningly pathetic statements made here.

    darin

    Posted by: Darin Brown | November 9, 2007 10:20 PM

  133. #133 Adele
    April 2, 2008

    Last Wednesday 10:24 PM cooler said

    I am now going to retire from further posts at scienceblogs for a long while, if people ignore me I am going away for good. Thanks its been fun.

    Ten hours and it would of been a whole week!!

  134. #134 Poodle Stomper
    April 2, 2008

    Cathy,
    Here is a link about a plasmid using a full length clone of SIV used to induce AIDS in monkeys. See how easy it is? No contaminations, no mycoplasmas, no PHA or anything…just a single tiny “harmless” circle of DNA. How about it?

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10195754

  135. #135 pat
    April 2, 2008

    “You quoted Duesberg saying that no studies are done of asymptomatic HIV-infected people to identify viral and non-viral risks for development of AIDS.”

    I quoted Duesberg to offer HIS answer to the question of why he doesn’t infect himself with HIV, PERIOD. But fine, have the cake and eat it too; it is not like this thread is an actual “conversation” anyway.

  136. #136 Adele
    April 2, 2008

    Kevin said
    the sheeple are rubbing their eyes

    Orac on respectful insolence
    We’ve caught a live one. Love the “sheeple” bit, by the way. Using that term is one of the most reliable indicators of a crank and conspiracy theoriest that I know of.

    Lyndon Larouche huh kev??

  137. #137 pat
    April 2, 2008

    ” Using that term is one of the most reliable indicators of a crank and conspiracy theoriest that I know of.”

    O, Orac, blessed be thy name.

  138. #138 pat
    April 2, 2008

    “We conclude that infection through intramuscular inoculation of cloned plasmid DNA encoding the entire proviral genome is reproducible and will provide a useful tool for studying viral pathogenesis.”

    does this mean:
    “proof of viral pathogenesis will provide a useful tool for studying viral pathogenisis”

    this is a layman’s question, not a trap.

    What does “progressed to AIDS” mean?

    thanks for laying off the qualifiers

  139. #139 ElkMountainMan
    April 2, 2008

    Pat,

    The passage you quote above means that injection of viral DNA (which is much easier to manipulate in vitro than actual virus) is sufficient for infection in the animal model. That is, the DNA directs production of new virions and infection proceeds. This system, the authors suggest, could be useful in analyzing the mechanisms by which the virus causes disease. Why? Ruth Ruprecht and colleagues elaborate in their introduction. DNA is more stable and can be easily produced in greater quantity than viral stocks. DNA can be purified to near homogeneity. It can be made clonally and is more easily quantitated than whole virus.

    “Progression to AIDS” means that infection has led to immunodeficiency. In a successful animal model, you would see the infected animals progress to AIDS as defined by immunological parameters, opportunistic infections, etc., while the uninfected controls remain healthy.

    Yesterday, Gene asked,
    “…how is Guardisil supposed to work if in fact there is no “cell-free transmission” of authentic HPV virions?”

    Gene may have meant this as an April Fool’s Day joke, but some time ago it could have been a serious question. Say, 102 years ago, in 1906, before Giuseppe Ciuffo presented evidence for the “cell-free transmission” of the etiologic agent of warts. Evidence, interestingly enough, that included an experiment on himself.

  140. #140 Chris Noble
    April 2, 2008

    “proof of viral pathogenesis will provide a useful tool for studying viral pathogenisis”

    I think that you are assuming that people are still trying to “prove” that viruses like SIVmac cause AIDS in animals.

    The pathogenesis of SIVmac had been established previously. The paper exists in the context of trying to improve the reproducibility in the infection of macaques in vaccine trials.

    It was cited above not to prove that these viruses cause AIDS but to get around Cathy’s silly post hoc objections about viral cultures full of PHA.

    What possible harm could a few short bits of circular DNA do?

  141. #141 Poodle Stomper
    April 2, 2008

    Pat,
    “does this mean:
    “proof of viral pathogenesis will provide a useful tool for studying viral pathogenisis””

    Elk pretty much covered it but it also shows once again what some have been denying; that a virus can be the sole and sufficient cause of immune collapse which leads to death. The only thing these poor monkeys were injected with was a full length infectious SIV clone (SIV being of course the simmian version of HIV). I’d be curious what Duesberg’s excuse for this would be. There is no passage of virus through immortal cell lines, no PHA, no mycoplasmas, and of course, no poppers…only DNA.

  142. #142 Poodle Stomper
    April 2, 2008

    PS. there was a typo above “simmian” should be “simian”. Sorry.

  143. #143 ElkMountainMan
    April 3, 2008

    Poodle Stomper,

    I would be curious about Duesberg’s response, too. No drug use, no “criminal” lifestyle (Duesberg’s words), just a tiny bit of DNA followed by immunodeficiency. It couldn’t be the injection itself: thousands of animals injected regularly with other substances fail to develop AIDS. It’s not the environment, since animals in the next room fail to get AIDS.

    Another puzzle for those who complain that vaccines “cause immunology” is found here:
    K. Muthumani, et al. (Vaccine, 2003) injected macaques with replication-incompetent DNA encoding portions of SIV239 sequence (DNA vaccination) to stimulate immunity. They injected control animals with the same DNA “backbone” lacking the viral sequences. Then they challenged all the monkeys with mucosal infection by actual virions intrarectally.

    What do we predict would happen?

    Cathy, cooler, Maniotis, etc.: If PHA or some other contaminant (e.g. Mycoplasma) in the virus prep were the true cause of AIDS in the model, all of the animals should have developed AIDS similarly.

    Michael, MEC, etc.: If environmental toxins, a mean animal care worker, or the psychological stress of needle stick caused AIDS, then all of the animals should have progressed to AIDS similarly.

    What really happened? After infection with “live” virus, the animals that had previously received the real DNA vaccine had much higher neutralizing antibody titers and much higher CD4+/CD8+ ratios than the recipients of the sham DNA vaccine.

    If there’s a plausible explanation for this that doesn’t involve infectious, pathogenic virus and stimulation of immunity by DNA vaccine, I would like to see it.

  144. #144 Molecular Entry Claw
    April 3, 2008

    Sir Elkie, how nice of you to talk to us! So nice it almost seems impolite to point out that you have changed the topic. So what makes you think any of the people you are addressing, especially Duesberg, whom Dr. Noble probably would inform you is the only “semi-respectable” person among us, would deny that vaccines can induce neutralizing antibody responses – and if they don’t there’s always squalene and mercury to help those dull viruses kick-start the immune system?

    Actually uou don’t need to be so formal about it; suffice to say that for every HIV vaccine that ever made it anywhere near human trials, several results similar in essence to the one you quote above would have been achieved. Right? I mean we all know the vaccine industry would never even think of moving to human trials without having plenty of proof that the vaccine was both safe and effective in animals. Right??

    Unfortunately we are not talking about SIV and monkeys, not even HIV and monkeys, but the fact that these results cannot be reproduced for HIV in real-life human trials, although one must admire the researchers’ conscientious and in vivo-like approach right down to the rectal challenges.

  145. #145 pat
    April 3, 2008

    “Pat,
    “does this mean:
    “proof of viral pathogenesis will provide a useful tool for studying viral pathogenisis””

    Elk pretty much covered it but it also shows once again what some have been denying; that a virus can be the sole and sufficient cause of immune collapse which leads to death. The only thing these poor monkeys were injected with was a full length infectious SIV clone (SIV being of course the simmian version of HIV). I’d be curious what Duesberg’s excuse for this would be. There is no passage of virus through immortal cell lines, no PHA, no mycoplasmas, and of course, no poppers…only DNA.”

    Have you asked Duesberg? His E-mail is open for you too.. Even I have recieved an E-mail answer from Duesberg on one occasion.

    …so leave me free of shit for only “copy-pasting” D’s response to why he won’t infect himself with HIV. I am hardly a scientist so I can’t tell you what causes aids…I only thought it helpful to the discussion to point out D’s position (or actual words).
    Now, on another note, I pray tell me what makes you think HIV is the SOLE cause of AIDS. I read Montagnier saying that the virus alone cannot be the sole cause of Aids. Is this just pure BS coming from the “CO”-discoverer of AIDS? Is Montagnier a crank? or a quack?…quaker?

    Also, why aren’t simians dying like Homo Sapiens for their SIV? God knows they like sex the way we think Africans like sex also and we are told their like is to be wiped out within…10 years ago.

    PS: I am a layman as you all know so please put it in plain english for me :)

    vos es plenus of shit

  146. #146 ElkMountainMan
    April 3, 2008

    Soon, I am sure, one of our denialist friends will rise to the occasion and educate us on how a squalene- and mercury-free DNA injection boosts anti-SIV immunity, and on how full-length SIV DNA, injected with nothing but the buffer it’s resuspended in, can cause AIDS.

    Until then, I am left with nothing to do but retrieve my ugly pedant’s cap (which I tossed into the umbrella rack after Pat’s English lesson) and ponder the merits in the work of a professional “medical writer/researcher.”

    This yawn-inspiring task began with an email I received last night from someone apparently operating under the mistaken assumption that I was interested in learning the identity of “Cathy.” Attached was a Word document with the text of a May 14, 2007 opinion letter from a New Zealand publication called “Scoop,” playfully entitled, “Gardasil: The Mercky World of Anti-Cancer Vaccines.” The author, it was claimed, is the same Cathy who posted here of late.

    The letter-writer’s name, I soon found, is also present on David Crowe’s famous list of 2500 renouned scientists and doctors as a “medical writer/researcher.” Because of these impressive denialist credentials (and since she had recently criticized my admittedly middling English skills), I decided to read her “Scoop” op-ed.

    As I recently reminded Pat, it’s best to criticize the writing of others from a position of strength. Imagine my surprise, then, (assuming Cathy is, in fact, the “Scoop” Cathy) to find numerous errors in the first few paragraphs of the piece.

    In the letter, the author smears Gardasil as being a brand, “much like Coca Cola or MacDonalds”. “Coca-Cola” is of course hyphenated, and the fast-food giant with the golden arches is “McDonald’s” not “MacDonalds”.

    The writer asks, “Were Ministry of Health officials asleep when this one [Merck's assertion that Gardasil protects against HPV-associated cancer] snuck under the radar?” Really, Cathy: “snuck”? In the Queen’s English, “sneaked” is the correct past tense and past participle of “sneak”. Some American English speakers use “snuck,” but, really: it’s substandard.

    Several sentences on: “Rather than rely the emotive (but no less important) anti-vaccine arguments this writer would like to bring a little logical perspective”. One can “relay” arguments or “rely on” arguments, but hardly “rely” them.

    (As for “logical perspective”, the article is fairly devoid of it. For example, the author writes that a genetic predisposition is needed for scc of the cervix, and that Gardasil is therefore useless. Not necessarily so. Eliminating one factor in disease could help lower incidence, even if that factor is not found in all disease or sufficient on its own to cause disease.)

    “Viral particles”, contrary to the author’s claim, are not found in Gardasil. Rather, “viral-like particles”, VLPs, shells of recombinant protein, are there.

    As for “adenomcarcinoma”–well, the author got that one right elsewhere. Still looks a bit silly, though, for a self-proclaimed “medical writer/researcher”.

    “A Medline search with the limit “randomised clinical trial” and the key word “Gardasil” returns nothing.” My search returns four hits from before the publication date of the “Scoop” article–two if we exclude the two NEJM reports from May 10, just a few days before the “Scoop” press date. We haven’t heard from mathematician Dr. Darin Brown recently, but I’m sure he could confirm that two is greater than zero.

    And so on. For reasons of time, language, and science, I couldn’t read more than the first half or so of this lengthy (and, I admit, extensively if “activistly” researched) article, but the density of errors was striking.

    I’m confident this op-ed is not representative of the no doubt excellent and voluminous work of the “medical writer/researcher” in question. In fact, if she doesn’t mind, I hope she will send us some references to her better pieces, which I am sure exist although my quick internet search was unable to turn them up.

  147. #147 pat
    April 3, 2008

    my english lesson was well taken so you can retriecve your whatever skull cap you want …as for the rest mmmm
    mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzroflzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzsort cought rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzpppppppppppppffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

  148. #148 Poodle Stomper
    April 3, 2008

    Pat,
    “Now, on another note, I pray tell me what makes you think HIV is the SOLE cause of AIDS. I read Montagnier saying that the virus alone cannot be the sole cause of Aids. Is this just pure BS coming from the “CO”-discoverer of AIDS? Is Montagnier a crank? or a quack?…quaker?”

    None of the above. You should be careful to check on what you read, especially if the material is old. Montagnier is a scientist. Back in the early 1990′s be proposed that HIV MAY require another factor such as mycoplasmas as a trigger to progress to AIDS. He did not say for sure because he was not certain himself. This was back before more thorough data on mycoplasmas was obtained. In 1996 Montagnier said in an interview (I believe it was in Science and can find a link to it if you want) that the mycoplasmas did not play as significant role as he had thought they might (key word “might”) and concluded that HIV was both necessary and sufficient to cause AIDS. In later papers related to these mycoplasmas Montagnier, like Lo, essentially demoted mycoplasma from possible co-pathogen to possible cofactor that may speed progression to AIDS but is not necessary.
    When reading papers from long ago where scientists state something is a possibility, I would recommend looking to more recent papers to see if they resolved said possibilities.

  149. #149 Poodle Stomper
    April 3, 2008

    Pat (part deux),
    “Also, why aren’t simians dying like Homo Sapiens for their SIV? God knows they like sex the way we think Africans like sex also and we are told their like is to be wiped out within…10 years ago.”

    One thing to keep into account here is the amount of time during which the species in question has been exposed to the pathogen. A period of selection against their respective SIVs over a very long period of time has selected simians for resistance against THEIR strains. The emphasis on “THEIR” is because chimps have long ago reached an equilibrium with SIVcpz. Inject a chimp with an SIV from a different species and they can and do succumb to AIDS. In humans the exposure of our species as whole to the human version (HIV) is fairly new and thus we have not undergone a period of selection. There are people who through certain factors (some identified and others not yet) do not progress to AIDS. In nature, if we did not have modern medicine, these people would surviveand breed while the rest of us would not. The remaining people would thus have reached the same equilibrium with HIV that simians have to their respective SIVs. Hope I was able to make this clear in layman’s speak. If not I can try to clarify further.

  150. #150 Chris Noble
    April 3, 2008

    Hope I was able to make this clear in layman’s speak. If not I can try to clarify further.

    A classic example is the introduction of myomavirus in an attempt to control the rabbit population in Australia in the 1950s

    Frank Fenner

    Throughout the 1940s and 1950s Australia had severe rabbit plagues, Fenner’s work on the myxoma virus showed that initially it killed rabbits in nine to 11 days and was 99.5% lethal. Under heavy selection pressure, the few rabbits that survived developed resistance, which meant that the pest was never completely eradicated, but their numbers were reduced. Prior to the release of the virus as a biological control for the rabbits, Fenner, Frank Macfarlane Burnet, and Ian Clunies Ross famously injected themselves with myxoma virus, to prove it was not dangerous for humans.

    In addition to the rabbits developing resistance the virus itself became less virulent over time. A virus that kills its host before it can be transmitted to another host is not selected for.

  151. #151 Stomps on Poodle Stompers
    April 3, 2008

    Poodle. Open wide, and eat this: Luc Montagnier has JUST PUBLISHED A NEW BOOK! The following are the 2 day old words of the well known expert in Electron Microscopy, Etienne De Harven, regarding Luc’s just released book:

    “Yes, an incredible book has just been published, in French, by Luc Montagnier, under the title of “Les Combats de la vie”, JC Lattès, editor, 2008, Paris, readily available via Amazon.

    I finished reading it 2 days ago, and I am still in some kind of a state of shock….

    The book starts off by 138 pages of typical Montagnier’s classics, such as HIV is not the only cause, mycoplasma should be looked at more carefully, nanobacteria also…

    Then, an extensive review on oxidative stress, with repeated indications of its likely causal role in AIDS. I had heard Montagnier speaking on that during his presentation at the European Parliament, Brussels, Dec 2003, during which he never made the slightest reference to Eleni Papadopulos, who, unless one of you can prove me
    wrong (?), was the first one to hypothesize a possible link between AIDS and oxidative stress, in 1988. I went then to chat with Montagnier, when the official part of the debate was over, and I told him how surprised I was that he had strictly ignored referring to Eleni’s early paper! Back home, in February 2004, I wrote a long
    letter to him, including Eleni’s reference…
    Throughout that part, he gives the strong impression of having a broad paternity on the oxidative stress hypothesis… (I remember so well my former chief, Emmanuel Farber, speaking about free radicals 40 years ago…!)

    To continue with his recent book, Luc then turns into an expert nutritionist on anti-oxidants, with large interest on herbal medicine such as fermented papaya extracts,
    and an interestingly open mind on alternative herbal medications. And with very snappy remarks on the hardly justified huge profits of Big Pharma !!

    But the shock is in the final pages, when he recognizes that:
    - scientific congresses became “great masses”, where great priests pronounce the dogma that shall be distributed to their “slave-collaborators”,

    - denouncing the sacred ritual of absolute dogma, and a tendency to eliminate disturbing ideas,

    - denouncing the formations of “closed chapels” where innovative ideas are excluded,

    - denouncing the exclusion from the scientific community of those who dare to deviate from the orthodox paradigm,

    - denouncing the “scientific monotheism” as a true perversion of real science,

    - and stressing that there is no place left for those iconoclasts who dare to shake the dogma…

    Sure, we all agree on all these points!
    But to hear Montagnier saying this, WHILE HE IS HIGHLY RESPONSIBLE FOR ALL OF IT, is where I find it absolutely shocking!
    A hypocritical monument…
    Of course, when the HIV/AIDS dogma shall finally collapse, this will make it easy for him to say “I told you so…..”
    Hoping to have stimulated your curiosity on this frankly surprising piece of literature!!

    And with my best wishes to all of you in all your projects!
    Kind regards,
    Etienne.

  152. #152 Gosh & G. Willigers
    April 4, 2008

    (Cue nuclear bomb explosion sounds,
    cue one last ignorant rant each from chris, elkie, DT, Franklin, Adele, poodle wanker, and a couple of the other hiv bonzo’s just before they are high-tailing it out the door stage left and running to their local unemployment offices, cue tara’s sobbing that her little hiv/aids fest and all its funding will be quickly coming to an end,
    and cue the fewer and fewer who will ever follow this misled little blog again in the future)

  153. #153 michael Jefferis
    April 4, 2008

    It may well be the case that HPV and cervical cancer are not the greatest health concern that Americans have, but it seems to me, if I remember correctly, that the world death rate from cervical cancer caused by HPV (the particular carcinogenic strains) is around a million. HPV vaccination will be most useful, then, among women in developing countries.

  154. #154 şapka
    April 4, 2008

    ŞAPKA SAPKA imalat ŞAPKA SAPKA imalat

  155. #155 Molecular Entry Claw
    April 4, 2008

    Pat, immediately after you had assured us that Sir Elkie’s English lesson was well taken you wrote “cought” in between a string of consonants. If that’s an allusion to the poor quality of your teacher’s teachings I shall not argue.

    Soon, I am sure, one of our denialist friends will rise to the occasion and educate us on how a squalene- and mercury-free DNA injection boosts anti-SIV immunity, and on how full-length SIV DNA, injected with nothing but the buffer it’s resuspended in, can cause AIDS.

    Sir Elkie, tsktsktsk! Let me repeat it for you and your Poodle: you don’t have an animal model for AIDS. No matter how many diversions you come up with, or how often you change the topic, that’s the fact of the matter. Get over it.

    Now you claim that Cathy or her computer made a numerical mistake when googling “randomised trial gardasil”. Quite frankly Sir Elkie, I think most people would be more interested in who made this particular error, and how:

    In New Zealand, Merck seem rather more brazen than their US counterparts in the claims being made for Gardasil. On their website – gardasil.co.nz – information is provided for both patients and health professionals. Both are informed that HPV causes all cervical cancer. It appears that our cervixes (or our litigation laws) are different to those of the rest of the world! The information provided for doctors makes even more bizarre claims; “Gardasil is 100% effective in protecting your patients from diseases caused by HPV 16, 18, 6 and 11″ including cervical cancer!”

    Sir Elkie’s “defence” of this massive misinformation campaign was to point out that Cathy had used the word “snuck” in the next sentence. I’m sure Noble and Poodle were impressed.

    In reponse to this,

    Merck state repeatedly on their promotional material that cervical cancer is not heritable.

    Sir Elkie presented this argument from Cathy:

    For example, the author writes that a genetic predisposition is needed for scc of the cervix, and that Gardasil is therefore useless.

    This happens to be pure invention. A bald-faced lie. Ten out of ten on the classical smear test. Either that or Sir Elkie’s mytho-virus infection has advanced to the final stage. Cathy nowhere makes that argument.

    The result, for those of us who do not consider essential an “a” too many in “McDonald’s”, or one too few in “relay”, is that Sir Elkie’s most substantial critique of a long article, systematically exposing massive fraud and disinformation from vaccine-makers, was that his medline search had turned up two hits for “randomised trial Gardasil”, whereas Cathy claims she had none.

    This is such a perfect example of right-wing gutter politics-style smear, obfuscation and lies coming from an anonymous “scientist” that it deserves to be archived on Newaidsreview (hereby done).

    Speaking of NAR, Sir Elkie, this was submitted a couple of days ago – looks like Elks are wonderfully predictable animals:

    Cathy, they are now playing their favourite game at Aetiology, which is “guess who”. They want to find out who you are, so they can start the ad hominem (. . .) They will search through everything (they think) you or your pastor ever said to bring up against you and avoid the substantive issue. It doesn’t matter who you are. If you’re a nobody, they will use that against you.

    Now who’s “cought”?

  156. #156 Poodle Stomper
    April 4, 2008

    Etienne,
    Montagnier has mentioned the possibility that oxidative stress could be a cofactor in AIDS for a long time. However, a cofactor is something that enhances the progresion, not something that causes it. One of his ideas was that lowering the amount of oxidation would result in lowering not only the amount of direct damage done to cells but also the amount of latently infected cells which would get activated and produce more viruses. I’m a bit of a fan of Montagnier so I will probably buy the book this week but in the mean time can you tell me which pages he says HIV does not cause AIDS, even if just alone?

  157. #157 Poodle Stomper
    April 4, 2008

    The above should have been addressed to Stomps not Etienne, my bad.

  158. #158 ElkMountainMan
    April 4, 2008

    MEC,

    Elk are indeed predictable animals, as are mountain men, but as I have stated, Cathy’s identity is of no concern to me…. Whether she is a scientist or a “nobody” doesn’t matter if she presents her position with knowledge and logic.

    Likewise, Cathy’s difficulties with spelling and sentence structure don’t bother me on their own. One can make substantive points without good writing skills, as we have seen numerous times on this blog, perhaps even from me and from cooler now and then. But I did find amusing the many errors in the first few paragraphs of an op-ed published by a self-labeled medical “writer/researcher” who criticizes others based on a single word in a blog comment. As well as the confusion of virions with VLPs, her telltale training in the Duesberg/Bauer School of Wishful Statistics, and the inability to decipher anything other than what she wants to see in a marketing brochure from Merck.

    Cathy’s comments here and in the “Scoop” opinion letter (again, in the absence of better writing that I’ve urged her to share with us) indicate that she is but another amateur activist with a seemingly personal gripe against those with education and knowledge, a tendency to conspiracy theory, and an understanding of HIV/AIDS, HPV, vaccines, and experimental methods that’s limited to what she wants to believe…..traits, incidentally, she shares with most denialists I’ve encountered.

  159. #159 MEC
    April 4, 2008

    Sir Ekie,

    Although we don’t strive for the same literary perfection in these Comments as we demand of Cathy (and as Cathy demands of us), I appreciate that you’ve corrected my spelling of more than one Elk.

    As for the rest, you’re as cowardly and dishonest as ever. You’re doing exactly what I predicted you would by searching if not high then certainly low for something to discredit Cathy.

    While you keep reasssuring us that it doesn’t matter to you who she is, yawn, yawn etc., you somehow manage to squeeze in repeatedly that you’ve received and read info about her from your confidant, googled her name, found her on Crowe’s list, found out that she is a “self-professed medical writer” and so on. In short, ElkGossipMan, you’re not exactly fooling anybody.

    The fact is there is nothing wrong with Cathy’s spelling or sentence structure, which latter you thought you could sneak in for free didn’t you? If you could be persuaded to disregard the two brand-names that would already cut the errors in half in an article that was so long you couldn’t even manage to read it to the end. And you didn’t make it halfway through before you started fabricating.

    You probably thought you could sneak the thing about wishful statistics in there for free as well. Maybe this didn’t make it past the AIDStruth antlers, but he fact is it was Merck’s statistics that were wishful, and it was you who couldn’t come up with anything to defend them. Nada, zippo, zero. And that goes for the targets of Prof. Bauer’s analyses as well.

    So can you? Can you show us anything you have written that identifies you as more than the common cowardly smear merchant?

  160. #160 Adele
    April 4, 2008

    Hi Stomps wow that’s a good pasting. Your saying Monty says HIV isn’t the only thing in immunodef isn’t it what every one says. ya know immune activation and all.

    Hi MEC

    Gee guess who plays guess who, deniosaurs that’s who.

    Adele is Tara
    Adele is JEanne
    Adele is Moore
    Adele is retired scientist in Utah

    Guess who does ad homs, deniosaurs that’s who.

    Adele is fat
    Adele is ugly
    Adele is old
    Adele is stupid
    Women are stupid
    Tara can’t drive
    Tara has warts on the nose

  161. #161 Poodle Stomper
    April 4, 2008

    Stomps,
    While I don’t have Montagnier’s book yet (it is on order) I did have the chance to look through freely available preview of the first part. I quote below a section on the immune system and translate (to the best of my abilities) for non-French speakers (Page 24):

    Les lymphocytes T4 sont un peu les chefs d’orchestre du système immunitaire qu’ils stimulant et conduisent par l’intermédiaire des cytokines. Ce sont eux qui donnent la mesure aux cellules T8, cytotoxiques. Mais c’est aussi en fonction de leur présence
    et de leur vitalité que se feront de bonnes presentations d’antigènes, que se fabriqueront les anticorps. Ce sont eux que le Sida, justement, détruit. Malin, le VIH*
    frappe précisément à la tête de l’orchestre, en utilisant des protéines spécifiques paralysant et provoquant indirectement la mort des T4. C’est ainsi qu’il enraye les
    mécanismes de l’immunité dont l’efficacité repose sur une coordination parfaite de ses éléments constituants.

    Translation:
    T4 lymphocytes act somewhat like the conductor of our immune system “orchestra” through the use of chemokine intermediaries. They are the ones giving orders to cytotoxic T8 lymphocytes. However, they are also needed for efficient antigenic presentation, which results in the formation of antibodies. These are precisely the cells that HIV destroys. HIV strikes precisely at the head of the orchestra using specific proteins to stop T4 cells and also to kill them indirectly. This is how they lock up the immune system’s mechanisms, whose perfect coordination is necessary for efficient function.

    So while oxidants in our bodies may in fact cause further damage to our immune cells (this is supported by mainstream science) and while reduction in oxidative stress is probably not a bad thing, Dr. Montagnier clearly places the blame for the breakdown in immunity on HIV. Of course there is always the chance that he will change his mind later in the book. There is also the chance that Etienne, a denialist, is simply reading into it what he wants. It wouldn’t exactly be without precedent.

  162. #162 eon flux
    April 4, 2008

    In this study, even if on ignores that HIV and SIV is harmless in most all primates and only focus on SIV in Macaque monkeys, which could be a stretch, you will see that 8 Macaque monkeys out of 16 survived SIV inoculation. The one’s that didn’t died within 6 months to a year. This does not resemble the 10 year latency seen in HIV. Also a strong antibody response was seen in those that survived, which is seen in many humans.

    Long-term persistent infection of macaque monkeys with the simian immunodeficiency virus.Daniel MD, Letvin NL, Sehgal PK, Hunsmann G, Schmidt DK, King NW, Desrosiers RC.
    New England Regional Primate Research Center, Harvard Medical School, Southborough, Massachusetts 01772.

    Juvenile rhesus macaques 6 to 18 months of age were experimentally infected by intravenous inoculation with the simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV), the T cell-tropic retrovirus of monkeys related to the human acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) virus HIV. The SIV used for inoculation was grown either in normal human peripheral blood lymphocytes in the presence of interleukin 2 or in the human tumour cell line HUT-78. Eight of the macaques died 129 to 352 days post-inoculation with a variety of clinical and pathological findings paralleling those of AIDS in humans. However eight other animals became persistently infected for prolonged periods; these eight macaques remained alive at 537 and 820 days post-inoculation despite persistent lymphadenopathy and our continued ability to isolate SIV. The ability of these monkeys to survive infection correlated directly with the strength of their antibody response to SIV. Infection was also established in macaques using approximately 100 tissue culture infectious doses of HUT-78-grown SIV. There was no correlation between the dose of virus inoculum and either the strength of the antibody response or clinical outcome. These results demonstrate that SIV infection of macaques can be used not only to study acute AIDS but also to mimic the long-term persistent infection seen in carriers of HIV.

    PMID: 2826656 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

  163. #163 Eon's full of it.
    April 4, 2008

    Eon, your conclusion is patently ridiculous: “These results demonstrate that SIV infection of macaques can be used not only to study acute AIDS but also to mimic the long-term persistent infection seen in carriers of HIV”.

    SIV is not HIV, no matter how you try to spin it. It is a much larger entity then what is claimed to be HIV.

  164. #164 Eon's right on target
    April 4, 2008

    Eon, my apologies.

    After re-reading your post, I see that the ridiculous conclusions are those of the braindead boneheads who wrote the study.

  165. #165 Adele
    April 4, 2008

    Eon whatever, stop talking to yourself.

    It is a much larger entity then what is claimed to be HIV.

    Whose the braindead bonehead now, SIV, HIV are same sized. Virions and genome. You wouldn’t know a animal model if it through its feces at you so go back to watching charlise theron.

  166. #166 Mountain Man
    April 4, 2008

    Adele,

    Please, please don’t mention Charlize Theron again in public. She’s a fabulously beautiful actress, and we don’t want even a hint of assocation between her and your fat, ugly ass. It really bums my mellow. Please stop.I beg of you.

  167. #167 FC
    April 4, 2008

    Daniel MD, Letvin NL, Sehgal PK, Hunsmann G, Schmidt DK, King NW, Desrosiers RC.

    Long-term persistent infection of macaque monkeys with the simian immunodeficiency virus.

    J Gen Virol. 1987 Dec;68 ( Pt 12):3183-9.

  168. #168 ElkMountainMan
    April 5, 2008

    MEC,

    Since you seem to be so interested in the HPV vaccine, and so impressed with Cathy’s comments on it, I read the remainder of the op-ed she allegedly wrote.

    In your words, MEC,
    he fact is it was Merck’s statistics that were wishful, and it was you who couldn’t come up with anything to defend them.

    It would help if you could point out which of Merck’s statistics were wishful. Cathy tried and in my view failed. The only fault I find with Merck’s reports is their assertion (in marketing material) that HPV is associated with all cervical cancers. They could be right, but there could also be a few HPV-negative cases. Merck’s fine print (on the marketing brochure I read, anyway) is better: they cite a study (Walboomers, JM, et al, J Pathol, Sept 1999) of over 900 archived patient samples in which 99.7% test positive for HPV, up from 93% in a previous study using earlier methods.

    It’s too bad Merck didn’t insert a little “almost”, but 99.7%, let’s be realistic, isn’t that far away from 100%, particularly for the marketing side of business. It’s also closer to the data than Cathy’s “HPV DNA has been found in ~ 80% of cervical squamous carcinoma”.

    Another example? Let’s examine Cathy’s claim, her second “point” in the “Evidence-Based Medicine?” section, that Merck’s Study 015 data actually prove Gardasil’s target HPV strains do not associate with a majority of external genital lesions (EGL).

    Cathy writes that, “According to Merck’s own results, strains 6 and 11 contribute less than 40% to all genital warts.” (According to her, Merck has stated that 6 and 11 cause 90%.) An obvious contradiction, right?

    Not so fast. Cathy presents a table illustrating that one Gardasil recipient developed target-strain-related EGL while 96 had any-strain EGL. A second table shows that 70 placebo recipients got target-strain EGL, but 177 developed any-strain lesions. Cathy thinks this means that only 70 of 177 (39.5%) EGL cases are due to HPVs 6, 11, 16, or 18.

    And it very well might….if the two tables were at all comparable.

    Cathy didn’t notice or concealed from “Scoop” readers that the two tables she modified (Tables 5 and 6 found at http://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/ac/06/briefing/2006-4222B3.pdf) present data, respectively, from the “per-protocol” population of women who tested negative at study entry for all four target strains and from the “MITT-3″ population including enrollees who tested positive at entry. These two tables can’t be compared directly. The second table includes the cases of HPV 6, 11, 16, and 18 excluded from the first. It’s likely that most or all of the additional cases of any-strain lesions in Cathy’s second table are in 6-, 11-, 16-, or 18-positive women.

    That’s right, MEC: the trusty invalid comparison technique straight out of the School of Wishful Statistics. As if once were not enough, Cathy repeats the technique for her next point, Point 3.

    MEC, if you insist, we can review Cathy’s letter to the editor claim by claim. I say it’s not worth our time. The article is worthless, except perhaps to show that anger and bitterness can impair one’s judgment…or as a tool in the science classroom (note to self).

    As I’ve already stated, I’m willing to look past spelling errors and (at least two, if you must know) poorly-crafted sentences. The editor may have been on vacation, the electronic version I read could be slightly different from the “official” on-line or print version, or Merck cyber-spies may have deliberately sabotaged Cathy’s work. Personally, I’m leaning towards that last one. But I’m not willing to excuse Cathy’s proudly diplayed ignorance of biology and stats.

  169. #169 pat
    April 5, 2008

    “Gee guess who plays guess who, deniosaurs that’s who.

    Adele is Tara
    Adele is JEanne
    Adele is Moore
    Adele is retired scientist in Utah”

    Don’t forget pat…

    pat is a murderous bastard
    pat is a disseminator of lies
    pat is a denialist
    pat is Maggiore’s legal team
    pat is kevin
    pat is michel
    pat is an englishman in New York…

  170. #170 pat
    April 5, 2008

    “Pat (part deux),
    “Also, why aren’t simians dying like Homo Sapiens for their SIV? God knows they like sex the way we think Africans like sex also and we are told their like is to be wiped out within…10 years ago.”

    One thing to keep into account here is the amount of time during which the species in question has been exposed to the pathogen. A period of selection against their respective SIVs over a very long period of time has selected simians for resistance against THEIR strains. The emphasis on “THEIR” is because chimps have long ago reached an equilibrium with SIVcpz. Inject a chimp with an SIV from a different species and they can and do succumb to AIDS. In humans the exposure of our species as whole to the human version (HIV) is fairly new and thus we have not undergone a period of selection. There are people who through certain factors (some identified and others not yet) do not progress to AIDS. In nature, if we did not have modern medicine, these people would surviveand breed while the rest of us would not. The remaining people would thus have reached the same equilibrium with HIV that simians have to their respective SIVs. Hope I was able to make this clear in layman’s speak. If not I can try to clarify further.”

    Thank you. You can clarify this for me. I have always felt that natural selection would amply explain simians’ apparent robustness towards this disease but how old would you make siv to be? I speculate that it cannot be that old. Africans have been hunting bushmeat since the dawn of time so that any virus befalling the chimps would quickly cross over into its closest cousin. What are your thoughts on this.

  171. #171 Mountain Man
    April 5, 2008

    Is there any data whatsoever that SIV has ever killed a primate in the wild? I doubt it.

    These microbe hunters, in an unending fetish to find the virus that causes cancer, already have fabricated all these animal cancer viruses. Feline Leukemia Virus is total bullshit — no pussycat ever died of Leukemia, for Gawd’s sake, they get kilt by cars!

    ElkMountain Man and these other morons are like these kids on the schoolyard talking about “cooties”. They’re afraid of their own shadow, lost in all this microscopic gobbledy-gook, and can’t even see what’s happening in front of their face with 20-20 vision.

    Viruses don’t do much. A 50 nanometer particle is small and fragile. It’s cleared by a superior immune system.

    Heart attack, cancer, stroke — those are the biggies.

    Get a frickin’ clue.

  172. #172 pat
    April 5, 2008

    “no pussycat ever died of Leukemia”

    None of our pussy cats have died of leukemia but they sure all died of cancer.

  173. #173 Jim
    April 5, 2008

    “Viruses don’t do much. A 50 nanometer particle is small and fragile. It’s cleared by a superior immune system.

    Heart attack, cancer, stroke — those are the biggies. ”

    Ah ignorance is bliss. Viruses do a lot as anyone who has been bedridden for a week with the flu can tell you.

    As for them being fragile, it depends on which one. Enveloped viruses tend to be more unstable and therefore harder to transmit. Some viruses (ie noroviruses or poliovirus) are incredibly durable and can last on surfaces without losing infectivity for long periods of time. This makes sense, considering they have to pass through the low pH of the stomach to reach their primary replication sites.

    It’s quite humorous thought that you list heart attack, cancer and stroke as the “biggies” without realizing that the reason we live to the ripe old age where these become more prevelant is BECAUSE there are those of us who are “lost in all this microscopic gobbledy-gook.” Without advances in the treatment of infectious diseases, we’d be dead long before a heart attack became an issue.

  174. #174 Molecular Entry Claw
    April 5, 2008

    Sir Elkie,

    I hate doing this cuz I’m concerned about the sensibilities of the general public seeing you all naked, but you asked for it.

    Put your piece of s*** name where your mouth is. Tell us what you think the causal link is between HPV and cervical cancer, percentages and everything, and sign your name Monsieur Coward.

    So Merck quote one study saying 99.whatever% of HPV is associated% with cervical cancer. What do you think? What is the causal link? Are you willing to make a bet Sir Chickenshit. The causal connection, percentages and everything. And don’t forget,

    Sign your name if you have one.

  175. #175 Molecular Entry Claw
    April 5, 2008

    Sir Elkie,

    I hate doing this cuz I’m concerned about the sensibilities of the general public seeing you all naked, but you asked for it.

    Put your piece of s*** name where your mouth is. Tell us what you think the causal link is between HPV and cervical cancer, percentages and everything, and sign your name Monsieur Coward.

    So Merck quote one study saying 99.whatever% of HPV is associated% with cervical cancer. What do you think? What is the causal link? Are you willing to make a bet Sir Chickenshit. The causal connection, percentages and everything. And don’t forget,

    Sign your name if you have one.

  176. #176 Mountain Man
    April 5, 2008

    Jim,

    Without advances in the treatment of infectious diseases, we’d be dead long before a heart attack became an issue.

    No, you buffoon. The fact that we are rich, the fact that we are extremely well nourished, the fact that we have clean water is why we are so healthy. These boogie men viruses don’t do squat.

    Now, this isn’t true in Africa, where they are still battling the residual effects of colonialism and tyrants and just obtaining basic needs. There, malaria and TB are, indeed, killers.

    But HIV is just a bullshit retrovirus that these microbe hunters keep pimping as something relevant, when it’s not. We should fire all scientists who work on HIV. They are hacks.

  177. #177 Poodle Stomper
    April 5, 2008

    Pat,
    “Thank you. You can clarify this for me. I have always felt that natural selection would amply explain simians’ apparent robustness towards this disease but how old would you make siv to be? I speculate that it cannot be that old. Africans have been hunting bushmeat since the dawn of time so that any virus befalling the chimps would quickly cross over into its closest cousin. What are your thoughts on this?”

    I have not looked too much into the age of SIV but one of the newer results suggest that the SIV that most likely gave rise to HIV is not only rare in nature but also may have been in chimps only for a few thousand years. There is a short article referring to that paper which I have linked to at the end of this post if you are interested. The prevalence of this particular SIV is not high in nature and could explain why transmission to humans would likewise have been rare. Hope this helps.

    http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn1991-missing-link-in-origin-of-hiv-revealed.html

  178. #178 ElkMountainMan
    April 6, 2008

    I’m sorry I upset you so, MEC. I merely pointed out a few of the errors in your friend’s anti-Merck opinion article. Be honest, demonstrate you’re a worthy Perthian, and either show me where I’m wrong or admit that Cathy (and you for backing her so unreservedly) were wrong. Why call me names and make this personal?

    I have an ability to read and think critically on occasion, and I don’t claim to be anyone or anything I’m not. That’s all you, anonymous MEC, really need to know about me. It doesn’t matter that I’m good at repairing clothes dryers, am a teacher, and have an education in science.

  179. #179 Scouse-Scally-Rationalism
    April 6, 2008

    Mountainman you have been asked to provide causation rather than just correlation. Finding HPV gene seqeunces in CIN and cervical cancer proves nothing. That’s like saying “carbon is the root of all disease because we find it in all diseased cells”. How does HPV “virus” cause CANCER 30-40 years down the track exactly?
    “Anonymous MEC”? I don’t see you putting your real name to any of the drivel you spout so why criticize for something you appear to be so happy doing yourself?
    If you have an ability to think critically I have yet to see it in any of your posts.
    “That’s all we need to know about you” suggests your unbelievable egotism – who the hell would be remotely interested in a testosterone-depleted, self-congratulatory egotist like you anyway (just how big is your weiner?).
    I see a lot of unanswered questions on this thread – why don’t you silence the “dissidents” with some actual science rather than slinging unsubstantiated vomitus?

  180. #180 Molecular Entry Claw
    April 6, 2008

    Wise and predictable decision, Sir Elkie. In your position I would do the same. To be stripped down now where the embarrassment is only momentary certainly is preferable to officially declaring yourself a believer in the Merck disinformation.

    Do you approve of the message your goon just sent to obcure the fact that you were too cowa… I mean too clever to put your money on the 99.7% association study you brought in to back up your pathetic defence of Merck’s and now your own lies?

    “Testosterone-depleted”? Is it just me, Sir Elkie, or do you sense a degree of gender insecurity in your enthusiastic supporters? Have you had your HPV shot yet?

  181. #181 Molecular Entry CLaw
    April 6, 2008

    The message being that the HIV that came from SIV in monkeys has only been in he chimp popuplation a few thousand years which explains why it caused AIDS in Haiti before it did in Africa. Would you like to attach your testosterone-depleted name to that scientific theory?(sorry Scouse but really, what kind of insult IS that?! LOL!)

  182. #182 Dale
    April 6, 2008

    Finding HPV gene seqeunces in CIN and cervical cancer proves nothing. That’s like saying “carbon is the root of all disease because we find it in all diseased cells”.

    Using correlation to hypothesize causation is not just a matter of where you find something but where you don’t find it. Carbon isn’t a candidate for all disease because you find it all cells, diseased or otherwise. Show me a study that says HPV is equally prevalent in CIN, cervical cancer and normal tissue and I’ll agree that HPV in cervical cancer “proves nothing”.

  183. #183 jspreen
    April 6, 2008

    Viruses do a lot as anyone who has been bedridden for a week with the flu can tell you.

    Anyone who has been bedridden for a week with the flu doesn’t have a clue about what made him/her feel so ill at ease. If that anyone tells me that some virus did all that harm, he/she is only stupidly repeating a silly concept some scientists he/she respects so much want him/her to believe.

    Why don’t you wake up from your apathy for a day, read all you can find about the struggle that opposed prof. Antoine Bechamp and that Louis Pasteur imposter and get your ideas right about microbes and stuff? And once you’ve done some Bechamp vs. Pasteur reading in the afternoon, hop over to Ryke Geerd Hamer’s New Medicine in the evening. The day after that you’ll be a new person.

  184. #184 DrT
    April 6, 2008

    Anti-vaccination is yet another example of an appalling lack of understanding of basic science. We have to do better at educating people and it has to be early, in K-12. Not everyone goes to a university and takes an immunology class.

    If you take some of this anti-vaccine reasoning to its logical conclusion, you would completely eliminate all medical treatment in its entirety. If it makes society stronger to allow people to have the diseases instead of preventing them by vaccination, why give any medicine to people? Why do surgery? Why intervene at all ever. No thank you, I’d rather have medical treatment available to me. Furthermore, I prefer prevention over treatment after the disease happens.

  185. #185 Mountain Man
    April 6, 2008

    DrT,

    Are you one of these quacks, too? One of these grown men who view vaccines, the same way a toddler views his widdle blanky?

    For Chrissake, grow a pair!

    People get chicken pox, and survive it without a vaccine.

    Everyone gets the flu, once or twice a year, not a big deal. Take some nyquil and get some sleep.

    I’ll say it again for those who lack brains — heart attack, cancer and stroke are the 3 biggies. Not microbes, not infectious disease, not viruses.

    The reason we are in great health, ain’t because of vaccines. It’s because of wealth, stability, clean water, orderly sewage systems, and abundance of food. Duplicate this in Africa, you’ll get the same results.

    Good luck with your student loans, twerp.

  186. #186 Jane
    April 6, 2008

    Are you the brilliant intellects that are going to continue to crack the mysteries of the genome and unravel the mysteries of disease etiology and processes?

    Please remember while you waste your time, energy and entertain yourselves with such bantoring, there are ‘people’ out in the real world dealing with these issues.

    I am a lowly Associates Degree nurse. I barely understand the ‘techie’ speech going on here. I would love to understand the level of Microbiology required to participate in research.

    I do however, understand very well the basic disregard for each other and for each others ideas and theories.

    Please forgive me for chastising, I recently was recently diagnosed with Primary Immune Deficiency. Deficient in
    IgG-3 and MBL’s. I’m very low on IgG-1 and IgG-4. Even though the specific mechanism(s) have not been identified, when I am provided antibodies via vaccination for specific pathogens, my antibody titers drop to low or none.

    I do not have Acquired Immune Deficiency, I do have Primary Immune Deficiency. I have not been genetically programmed to fight the normal bacterias, virus’ and fungus we are all exposed to in daily living. There are at least over 70 variations of the deficiencies identified.

    Please remember that ‘human beings’ are out here waiting for “your brilliance to shine.” Unfortunately, I seem to have passed these genetic deficiencies to my children.
    Now, I am watching my grandchildren be affected.

    Please, take it easy on each other and get busy.

    Thanks for listening.

  187. #187 jspreen
    April 7, 2008

    Furthermore, I prefer prevention over treatment after the disease happens.

    You do? That’s quite a statement. If always figured people prefered the other way… You dumbass…

    The problem is that prevention is not possible if you don’t know what causes the thing you want to prevent. And since medicine today ignores absolutely everything about the causes of disease, prevention is hard to come by.
    What did you say? Overwhelming evidence proofs that for exemple viruses cause disease?

    Ha ha ha ha ha HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHA HA HA !!!!

    Sorry. I always burst out laughing when I hear such crap. Forget that Louis Pasteur fraud, Google Antoine Bechamp and start to dig your way into real science.

  188. #188 ElkMountainMan
    April 7, 2008

    “Scouse-Scally”,

    You are familiar with the moving goalposts tactic. The question for me has changed from: “Was Cathy’s op-ed flawed?” to: “Can you prove HPV causes all cervical squamous cell carcinoma…and give us your name, your physical measurements and an assessment of your masculinity or lack thereof?”

    If you want debate, then debate. Show me I was wrong about your op-ed. Show me that the literature does support only 80% association of HPV with cervical carcinoma; that virus particles and VLPs are the same thing; that “many researchers feel that HPV alone is neither necessary nor sufficient” for the development of cervical carcinoma”; that hereditary factors in carcinogenesis somehow disprove a virus connection or negate the importance of the virus; that it’s statistically valid to compare two overlapping but non-equal populations as if they were exactly the same.

    Will you give it a try? Or will you call me names?

    (By the way, most self-respecting medical writers/researchers use “wiener”, not “weiner”.)

  189. #189 ElkMountainMan
    April 7, 2008

    Sorry, the correct quote from Cathy’s op-ed is:

    many researchers feel that HPV alone “is neither necessary nor sufficient” for the development of cervical carcinoma.

    (She didn’t mention that these “many researchers” will be meeting in a phone booth tomorrow at 5:30.)

  190. #190 Molecular Entry Claw
    April 7, 2008

    Not a nice try TestosteroneDepletedMan.

    Where did you get the 80% HPV-cervical cancer correlation from darling? What happened to the 99.7%? You o realize, don’t you, that Tara had a real “pro” – you know the one that thought HPV just might rub off on the breasts during sex n’ shower and cause cancer that way – on not long ago, who said the official number was 70% correlation. Are you gonna argue the point with him?

    so which horse do you back, and where did Cathy get it wrong?

    I said which number are you backing Don’tKnowWhenToQuitMan.
    Wasn’t it 99.7%? Wasn’t i? Wasn’t it? Wasn’t it?

    Sign your no-name under your plain words for all you student to see, coward.

    Cathy’s point was Merck is lying about the numbers. What do you think? The name-calling will continue until you start acting like a man you cowardly, lying, estrogen-driven son of Adam.

  191. #191 ElkMountainMan
    April 7, 2008

    MEC, you asked,

    Where did you get the 80% HPV-cervical cancer correlation from

    That’s a question you should direct towards your friend Cathy, who wrote, “HPV DNA has been found in ~ 80% of cervical squamous carcinoma”.

    HPV is found in virtually 100% of cervical squamous cell carcinoma samples. 95%, maybe, when you just look at high-risk types or use lower-sensitivity primer sets.

    Is HPV DNA found more often in cancer than in pre-cancer, and more often in pre-cancer than in healthy tissue?

    Yes. The chance of finding high-risk HPV infection rises as one examines populations with successively more advanced pre-cancerous abnormalities.
    Datta, SD, et al, Annals of Internal Medicine, 2008. See Table 1:
    http://www.annals.org/content/vol148/issue7/images/large/4TT1.jpeg
    Of 9657 enrollees, 23% (95% CI 22-24%) had current high-risk HPV infections. Of those with ASCUS, 44% (40-47) were positive; with ASC-H, 56% (38-73); with low-grade pre-cancerous lesions, 88% (85-91); with high-grade lesions, 91% (80-97).

    What about cancer? Is HPV DNA strongly associated with cervical squamous carcinoma and pre-cancerous lesions?

    Yes. Franco observed in 1995 that reports of HPV-positive cervical cancers had risen over time (with the development of better tests and identification of more HPV strains) from 60-90%, to about 93%, to over 95%: http://jnci.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/reprint/jnci%3b87/11/779.pdf?ck=nck

    That trend continued, and today the question is: do truly HPV-negative cervical squamous cell cancers exist? And if they do, are they negative because they were caused without any contribution by HPV? Or was an HPV infection cleared after its proteins started carcinogenesis?

    Walboomers, et al (J. Pathol, 1999) found HPV DNA in 99.7% of nearly one thousand cervical carcinoma samples.

    Lai, CH, et al, Int J Cancer, May 2007, testing 2,118 cervical cancers samples for HPV and specifically for 38 of the more than 100 known strains of HPV, report that “HPV DNA sequences were detected in 96.6% (95% CI, 95.8-97.4%) of the specimens”.

    An analysis of 11 case-control studies in various countries (Munoz, N, et al, Int J Cancer, 2004, http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/fulltext/108066144/HTMLSTART ) reports association of HPV DNA with 92.5% of 3,085 cervical cancer samples. When the two studies using a relatively insensitive HPV primer pair are excluded, the percentage rises to 96.2%….and the manuscript states that even the more reliable primer pair does not amplify all strains of HPV effectively.

    A 2003 meta-analysis (Clifford, et al, British Journal of Cancer) of published reports including 8,594 SCC cases and 4,338 HSIL (CIN grades 2, 3 or 2/3) found 87.6% HPV-positive SCC and 84.2% HPV-positive HSIL. Why such low numbers? Perhaps because included studies need have looked at only one HPV type in addition to 6, 11, 16, and 18.

    The words of a wise reviewer should serve as caution to overly-eager anti-medicine writers/researchers ( http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/515768_5 ):
    “One cannot ascertain whether there exist HPV-negative cervical cancer patients. Over 100 different HPV genotypes have been sequenced, but there are at least 100 more that still need to be analyzed.”

    Not only that, one must also be careful to assess the quality of samples and the possibility of false-negative results (and false positives, too, of course, as all reputable labs do routinely): Negri, et al, Cancer, Oct 2007. Of 4,130 samples, 90.9% from low-grade lesions and 97.8% from high-grade lesions were high-risk HPV positive. When the initially negative samples were re-tested, more than half of them were positive. Of the repeatedly negative samples, more than half were positive for low-risk HPV. Using a more labor-intensive and costly method, “In situ hybridization with HRHPV probes on the histologic specimens from the women who had persistently HCII-negative squamous cell carcinoma and CIN2 was positive with a typical, dot-like, nuclear pattern.” According to these authors, a negative HPV result with abnormal cytology should alert the clinician to an inadequate sample and the need for better testing.

    On a population level, higher HPV prevalence associates with higher cervical cancer incidence (Maucort-Boulch, D, March, 2008, “International Correlation between Human Papillomavirus Prevalence and Cervical Cancer Incidence”).

    The data are convincing. A brief review of the literature suggests that the more intensively a cervical cancer sample is studied and the more HPV subtypes are considered, the fewer truly HPV-negative cervical cancers there seem to be. This is why “most researchers,” (not that numbers matter, although Cathy seems to think they do), consider HIV necessary, if not sufficient, for the development of most cervical cancers. These researchers, along with Pyeon, et al, Cancer Res, May, 2007, can reasonably state that “Human papillomaviruses (HPV) are associated with nearly all cervical cancers”.

  192. #192 ElkMountainMan
    April 7, 2008

    MEC, my response was held up for moderation, but as for Mr. Fitzgerald, he specifically referred to HPV types 6, 11, 16, and 18, not HPV in general, as being involved in 70% of cervical cancer.

  193. #193 pat
    April 7, 2008

    is there a 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 15, 17, 19, …type hpv?

  194. #194 MEC
    April 7, 2008

    So, Sir Elkie, your bet remains, 99.7% of all cervical cancer is (partly) caused by HPV in a vaccine-relevant sense. Yes?

  195. #195 Mountain Man
    April 7, 2008

    Elk Mountain Man,

    You have got to be one of the dumbest sob’s on planet earth. You’re a disgrace to real men of the mount!

    HPV does not, in any sense of the term, CAUSE cervical cancer. That’s a joke. Why doesn’t it CAUSE cancer in men? Isn’t this deadly microbe being transmitted by men to women, and women to men?

    You do not get cancer from having sex, you prudish, pseudo-scientific goof. More so, if it takes nearly 50 years to get cancer, how the ^%(^% can these idiots trace it back to sex acts as a teenager.

    This is another in a never-ending series of scams to sell vaccines. You should take some Gardasil by the gallon, Hombre. It might do some good for your cervix.

    Grow a pair!

  196. #196 Chris Noble
    April 8, 2008

    HPV does not, in any sense of the term, CAUSE cervical cancer. That’s a joke. Why doesn’t it CAUSE cancer in men? Isn’t this deadly microbe being transmitted by men to women, and women to men?

    HPV doesn’t cause cervical cancer in men because they tend not to have a cervix.

    HPV does cause penile and anal cancers however.

    Are you really as ignorant as you appear to be?

    Everyone gets the flu, once or twice a year, not a big deal.

    Everyone does not get the flu once or twice a year. You are talking about common colds which are not influenza.

  197. #197 ElkMountainMan
    April 8, 2008

    Pat, yes, there are many different HPVs. HPV-1 is often associated with foot warts, HPV-2 with warts on the hands, etc.

    MEC, patience, my comment’s still in the queue. I would resubmit, but I hate to clutter.

    “Mountain Man”,

    If HPV is not sexually transmitted and does not cause cancer, it’s strange, isn’t it, that condom use prevents re-infection and promotes regression of penile HPV lesions in strain-concordant partners of women with cervical neoplasia….but not for strain-discordant men (take a look at the reference above when it shows up).

    I can imagine M’s explanation: In a sex- and germ-phobic society, men experience stress reduction by using condoms. Subconsciously, the brain also communicates with the penile epithelium to monitor local strains of HPV. This information is compared with a list of strains present in the cervix of the sex partner, a list obtained by telepathy during the sex act. Concordant strains trigger stress, causing lesions that regress under condom-related stress-reduction; discordant strains trigger condom-insensitive stress.

    Where’s that handy William of O. when we need him?

    PS: Mountain Man, it’s quite alright that you copied my name. Imitation flatters, and I need all I can get with my microcephaly and testosterone deficits.

  198. #198 MEC
    April 8, 2008

    HPV doesn’t cause cervical cancer in men because they tend not to have a cervix.

    You seem to forget about the bitchy, vapid, testosterone-depleted specimens, with nothing to do other than misread and misquote. Have you had your HPV shot yet, Dr. Noble, to avoid any unnecessary anal mishaps

    MEC, patience, my comment’s still in the queue. I would resubmit, but I hate to clutter.

    But in the meantime, Sir Elkie, a yes or no would do wonders. According to Cathy, Merck claima 100% (adjusted to 99.7) association/causation between cervical cancer and HPV. Is that correct? According to Cathy, Merck claims cervical cancer is not heritable. Is that correct?

    You are telling Mountain Man that condoms prevent re-infection in sero-concordant partners. Just in case your reference is opaque, how is it that one can get re-infected with the same strain. Does one not become immune? And why would there be cases, discordant or not, where condoms do not protect against re-infection? (not a trick question)

  199. #199 ElkMountainMan
    April 8, 2008

    MEC,

    I see my response is up now and should be fairly self-explanatory. HPV association with cervical cancer is just about as tight as the intrinsically messy affair of biology allows.

    But I also see you’re still straining to find something, anything, in Cathy’s article that is factually correct. And you did find something: it’s true that Merck claims cervical cancer is not a hereditary disease.

    But Cathy doesn’t just report what Merck (correctly) claims; she disagrees with Merck, perhaps because she doesn’t understand what “heritable” means.

    Cervical cancer is caused by HPV infection (necessary but not sufficient) where persistence of infection is facilitated by the necessary presence of one or more cofactors. The presence of one or more cofactors is necessary, but no individual cofactor is known to be necessary. That is, you may need HPV plus any one of cigarette smoking, HSV-2 infection, or genetic predisposition, but which of the three may not matter. Writing that cervical cancer is heritable is as wrong (if not as offensive) as saying like some HIV denialists that being gay causes AIDS.

    For her claim that cervical SCC is heritable, Cathy in a favorite denialist move cherry-picks a quote (from Eileen Burd, Clinical Microbiology Reviews, January, 2003). She also mistakenly calls it a “US study”. It’s really a review that uses a Swedish study as its reference for this:

    A genetic predisposition to colorectal cancer, lung cancer, and melanoma has long been recognized and is widely accepted. Genetic predisposition was found to be even a greater component in cervical cancer when the same method of analysis was used. Genetic heritability was found to account for 27% of the effect of underlying factors for tumor development. Heritability could affect many factors contributing to the development of cervical cancer, including susceptibility to HPV infection, ability to clear HPV infection, and time to development of disease.

    Burd does not claim that cervical cancer is a hereditary condition, where genetics are sufficient for disease. In the same review she writes, “The association between certain oncogenic (high-risk) strains of HPV and cervical cancer is well established”, “The magnitude of the association between HPV and cervical squamous cell carcinoma is higher than that for the association between smoking and lung cancer”, and “HPV has been implicated in 99.7% of cervical squamous cell cancer cases worldwide”.) Genetic factors that predispose to HPV infection or persistence or HPV-mediated carcinogenesis are not known to cause cancer in the absence of HPV.

    Here’s an example of a real hereditary cancer: In a heritable form of nonpolyposis colon cancer (HNPCC, or Lynch Syndrome), family members with cancer-specific mutations are much more likely than others to develop that cancer. A given carrier of HNPCC DNA mismatch repair mutations has an 80-90% chance of developing the cancer during a lifetime. That’s one. Two, in a heritable cancer, co-factors may contribute to carcinogenesis, but they aren’t necessary. Three, heritable cancers are often characterized by the early age at which carriers develop cancer.

    How does cervical cancer compare with HNPCC on these points?

    One, in cervical cancer, there doesn’t look to be a strong and clearly genetic (not environmental) familial association, certainly none that’s HPV-independent.

    From HT Lynch (as in Lynch Syndrome), et al, The Oncologist, 1998:
    “A four-generation study [Rotkin ID. Further studies in cervical cancer inheritance. Cancer 1966] involving 8,127 family members of 251 women with in situ or invasive cervical carcinomas in the San Francisco Bay area found no excess of multiple cancers or site-specific cervical cancers in relatives of the probands compared with 8,996 family members of case-matched control subjects; only an excess of skin cancers was found in family members of the cervical cancer and in situ cervical carcinoma patients. Furthermore, an analysis of 2,090 cancer patients identified among 4,635 lineages containing a total of 31,945 people in the Detroit area found no excess of cancers in families of cervical cancer patients [Albert S, Child M. Familial cancer in the general population. Cancer 1977].”

    A study surveying over 4 million Swedish women and over 100,000 in situ or invasive cervical cancers found some clustering by family (Nature, July, 1999; K Hemminki, et al, Int J. Cancer, November, 1999), but the authors suggest that this clustering (based on predisposition to other cancers) seems to be caused by shared environments and behaviors (e.g. tobacco smoke) and/or by hereditary factors that predispose to immunosuppression. (To be fair, Magnusson, et al, 2000, offer a different interpretation of the data, but they do not doubt HPV as the necessary cause of cervical cancer.)

    Two, in cervical cancer as opposed to HNPCC, the highest risks for disease are not genetic.

    High-risk HPV infection and the surrogate marker of multiple sexual partners are the greatest risks. Inheritance, multiple pregnancies, tobacco use, hormonal birth control, co-infection with HCMV or HSV-2, and nutritional variables may or may not be co-factors, but none of them is found in practically 100% of cancers like HPV. Proposed genetic co-factors (CCR-2, its ligand MCP-1, IL-4R, the HLA locus) in cervical cancer (just like HSV-2 infection and smoking) seem to exert their effects by giving HPV a better environment for infection and disease causation, not by causing cancer themselves.

    Three, in cervical cancer, the early disease onset often characteristic of inherited cancers has not been identified in the studies that find some family clustering (like Hemminki, et al, above).

    Cervical cancer is not heritable. There may be genetic factors that predispose to HPV infection, persistence, and carcinogenesis.

  200. #200 Molecular Entry Claw
    April 9, 2008

    Sir Elkie,

    Thank you for this excellent overview. Less would have done it, but that’s hardly cause for complaint.

    Suming up: You think HPV (DNA) can reasonably be expected to be found in all cervical cancer cases, even if sometimes it hasn’t been detected for various reasons. HPV thus looks to be a necessary cause of cervical cancer. That is your answer to this from Cathy:

    Although HPV DNA has been found in ~ 80% of cervical squamous carcinoma, many researchers feel that HPV alone “is neither necessary nor sufficient” for the development of cervical carcinoma

    You do not hold cervical cancer to be a true heritable disease since genetics cannot cause it independent of HPV, and it tends to appear late in life. Merck is therefore correct in asserting that cervical cancer is not heritable.
    That speaks to Cathy’s:

    researchers feel that HPV alone “is neither necessary nor sufficient” for the development of cervical carcinoma, and have found evidence that additional genetic predispositions must be present.

    I am not sure how far that really is from your,

    in cervical cancer, there doesn’t look to be a strong and clearly genetic (not environmental) familial association, certainly none that’s HPV-independent.

    Different definitions of “heritable” notwithstanding, Merck’s claims that cervical cancer is not heritable still seem a bit rash and one-sided to me on this background. But the 80% presence of HPV DNA of any description, as stated by Cathy, needs to be explained by her. It might well be what you suggested, a conflation of the four most common subtypes with all HPV.

    Perhaps we can move on to Cathy’s next charge, that following statement is rather rash as well.

    The information provided for doctors makes even more bizarre claims; “Gardasil is 100% effective in protecting your patients from diseases caused by HPV 16, 18, 6 and 11″ including cervical cancer!”

    Has Gardasil really been shown to be 100% effective? Ironically part of Cathy’s argument seems to be that even if the vaccine is 100% effective against HPV 16, 18, 6 and 11, it could not be 100% effective against all cervical cancer, since other subtypes are involved.I don’t think Merck normally would claim this, but apparently they have worded it thus in NZ. Be that as it may, do you, Sir Elkie consider it an established scientific fact that Gardasil is 100% effective in all strain 6, 11, 16, 18 cases? I guess we can exclude cases where asymptomatic HPV infection is already present.

    I realize Cathy hasn’t answered your criticism of her use of tables 5 and 6, so you don’t need to repeat that part of the argument, perhaps just indicate whether you consider Merck’s 70% estimate for strain 6, 11, 16, 18 correct.

  201. #201 ElkMountainMan
    April 10, 2008

    MEC, you asked,

    Has Gardasil really been shown to be 100% effective? Ironically part of Cathy’s argument seems to be that even if the vaccine is 100% effective against HPV 16, 18, 6 and 11, it could not be 100% effective against all cervical cancer, since other subtypes are involved.

    Merck’s NZ FAQ for doctors does state, “Gardasil is 100% effective in protecting your patients from diseases caused by HPV 16, 18, 6 and 11.” In the FAQ, though, this statement does not stand alone. It’s part of a text box on page 3 of 11 entitled, “How effective is Gardasil?” and includes information and caveats that modify the statement in question, as well as references to additional materials.

    The message of the entire text box and references is this: Based on two large-scale, double-blind, placebo controlled Phase III trials, 16-26 year old women who don’t already have HPV 6, 11, 16, and 18 and successfully receive all three doses of Gardasil are protected during two to four years of follow-up from disease involving those specific HPV strains as determined by efficacy measurements with results of 100% or whose 95% confidence interval results include or closely approach 100%.

    A completely dispassionate scientist might not have included the ill-defined and technically incorrect words “your patients” in the statement; I might have toned down the “100%” ever so slightly. But keep in mind that:
    1, this is after all a marketing brochure
    2, important additional information is supplied in the text box, its references, and the rest of the brochure.

    This is the difference between Merck’s “dishonesty” and Cathy’s dishonesty. Merck’s marketing team inserted a statement that, on its own, could be deemed somewhat misleading, particularly for an audience the FAQ was not intended for (it was not made available to non-medical professionals, and non-medically-qualified readers who view it on the internet must lie about their qualifications to download it). But the statement is not on its own; it is not truly dishonest or misleading when viewed in context. Merck included the information and references necessary to evaluate its claims.

    Contrast: Cathy carefully selected the part of Merck’s statement most prone to misinterpretation and presented it out of context….and with implications that cannot be supported by any reading of Merck’s FAQ.

    MEC, Cathy’s minor misspellings, etc., aside, (everyone needs an editor now and then), I really think she’s a fine writer. She’s creative (perhaps even too creative for stifling medical writing) and usually technically good, too. She’s a much better writer than most dissidents I have read. In her op-ed, she just doesn’t understand what she’s writing about, and I suspect some sort of personal issue with Merck or medicine in general has prevented her from being fair.

  202. #202 Molecular Entry Claw
    April 10, 2008

    Sir Elkie,

    That’s fine. I’m not a relative or a manager of Cathy’s, so I’m not hurt too much if some should disagree with her writing style, punctuation or whatever. But her piece in my opinion deserved exactly the kind of critique you have now delivered. And although, as you might have guessed, I have not been won over entirely to Merck’s or your side, I think it enables everybody to make up his/her own mind.

    In the case of authors like Duesberg, who will not appear here, I might have continued with some of my objections to rash conclusions, spending priorities and marketing strategies for things that should perhaps be exempt from the general law(lessness) of (not so) free market capitalism. But if Cathy herself doesn’t think it’s worth it, I’ll definitely let you have the last word this time in a true Bill O’ Reillyian spirit.

  203. #203 Scienceisdeadinthewater
    April 11, 2008

    Okay WiltMaintainMeme
    You can argue genetics/shmenetics until your fat ignorant head falls off. Your “esteemed” lot of “highly qualified PeeHaitchDees” can stand on your pathetic arguments of oncogenic- and AIDS-causing deadly viruses as much and as often as you like but the fact is you are no further forward in FIXING anything than you were when you fed all your patients mercury and arsenic. Show me some ACTUAL evidence where the lacklustre discipline of VIROLOGY or any other useless discipline actually provided the slightest improvement to human health. The fact is you can’t, because there is no evidence that these waste of space disciplines have provided one iota of improvement of the human lot. Tamiflu, Relenza – what a crock! Zytorin, Vioxx, Avandia, dual PPAR agonists? Hoo – they were impressive weren’t they?
    Is there a cure for diabetes, cancer, atherosclerosis, SLE, RA, asthma? No! You don’t even know how to prevent a common cold. “But the sneaky virusy wirusy mootates all the time” you blub into mummy’s skirts. Get off your self-constructed pedestal and take stock of what your “expertise” and business with disease has achieved. Hundreds of thousands of iatrogenic deaths every year in the US alone – proud of that are you?
    Statistical fraud is so rife in your paradigm and failure so ubiquitous that I’m surprised you have the temerity to breathe the same oxygen as those you so readily condemn to die. But READ MY LIPS – no…more….promising…drugs…in…the…pipeline!
    This means the bloated pharmaceutical industry is about to implode.
    That you are incapable of thinking outside of your self-imposed sheep pen is entirely your business – I hope you enjoy your chemotherapy when you get sick. That you suck billions of taxpayers’ dollars to produce only negative results is everyone’s business. The world is waking up to the fact that you are the leeches on the backside of society. How many Americans sought alternative therapies last year? How about the phenomenal growth in the natural health industry? People have seen your arse Whelky. Why do you suppose Codex is necessary to shore up the profits of your whoremasters? You’re all running scared – quick whelkboy, just like Montagnier you might just have time to desert your sinking shitty ship, mind out for all those other turds in the water though.

  204. #204 ElkMountainMan
    April 12, 2008

    Cathy, as Tara has stated to others, you are welcome to your own opinion; you are not welcome to your own facts.

    Bluster and name-calling do not substitute for critical thinking and solid research. That goes for scientists as well as their critics.

    Do you have an answer to my criticisms of your Scoop op-ed, or will you continue to ignore them and rail incoherently against science and medicine instead?

  205. #205 gene
    April 23, 2008

    Tara and Elkie: I apologize that I’ve responded in bits and pieces of the HPV-cancer debate in various threads. What I posted the other day obviously belonged here.

    I don’t believe it is important to get into the nitty gritty of the statistics.

    Here I will pose some questions.

    Can pieces of DNA with no autonomous associated polymerase be a “true” virus?

    Can a family of oncoprotein-coding episomes produced during carcinogenesis via well documented “DNA amplification” and labeled “HPV” explain the statistics so eloquently stated by Elkie?

    Shouldn’t first axioms:

    (a) that what needs to be blocked, i.e. cell-free transmission of a family of “authentic” viral multipliers not dependent on mitosis;

    (b) that agents in (a) cause cancer as demonstrated in carefully controlled studies of (gasp) ex vivo cancer cells, literature synthesis of biological mechanisms, etc.;

    be established to justify the risks that come with Gardisil?

    Are certain regulars here going to caricature the above questions as existential denial?

  206. #206 Cathy
    April 23, 2008

    Elk – What I find cringe making is your solipsistic assertion that I give a flying F*** what you think of the Gardasil article – your opinion as an industry stoolie matters not. If you found anything nice to say about it I’d be mortally offended.
    As for name-calling – you started it (stamps foot petulantly).
    “[C]ritical thinking and solid research” – ahem, blindly swallowing the claim that HPV 16 and 18 causes 100% of all cervical cancers (as you appear to) is critical thinking? And defending Merck’s record on “honesty” makes you nowt but a simpering sycophant. Are you angling for a pay-rise or what? Repeat after me (in reverential group-think tones): “My master is GOOD, my master is KIND, bears don’t shit in the woods and the Tooth Fairy is my friend.”

  207. #207 ElkMountainMan
    April 24, 2008

    Gene,

    Most DNA viruses, like HPV, don’t encode their own DNA-dependent DNA polymerase. They don’t need to, because the host cell provides the polymerases they need.

    I’m not the brightest candle in the chandelier, and I don’t quite understand what you’re getting at with the “first axioms”. There is cell-free transmission of HPV and HPV does transform primary cells in culture, if that’s what you’re asking. The former was known about 100 years ago, the latter, say, 25.

    Cathy, it’s best if you don’t give a flying frack about my opinions, but competent medical writers/researchers should give some thought to criticisms exposing major flaws in their work. Such thought must start with an understanding of the criticism itself. And I’m not aware of anyone who claims that HPV-16 and -18 cause “100% of all cervical cancers”. The literature as correctly reported by Merck suggests that 16 and 18 are associated with about 70% of cervical cancers and a “majority of vulvar and vaginal pre-cancers and cancers”.

    One of the Merck statements you took out of context (and misunderstood on its own) is that in the studies, the vaccine protected uninfected patients 100% against disease caused by -16 and -18. Merck emphasises that Gardasil does not protect against disease caused by HPV strains not included in the quadrivalent vaccine.

  208. #208 Joe
    June 6, 2008

    This does not prove causality, for there is no attempt to culture the microbe and inoculate animals, aka Kochs Postulates.

    Duesberg debunks once again.

    First off, Koch’s Postulates deal with some kind of idealized pathogen, and are sort of like something said by Socrates or Aristotle — a brilliant idea at the time, a great model for thought, but outdated and not very useful on its own.

    Postulate 1: “The microorganism must be found in abundance in all organisms suffering from the disease, but not in healthy organisms.”

    This seems like a good idea, but it’s wrong. It’s not 1900 anymore, and we now know that many of us are healthy but have pathogenic microorganisms (asymptomatic carriers) as well as many types of normally commensal microbes which can turn on us. Changes in stress, pH, diet, and so on can affect this ecology, resulting in some pretty unpleasant conditions without requiring the introduction of new pathogens.

    Koch was also aware that there were asymptomatic carriers of pathogens. For some reason, a century later, we are continually amazed to read about someone who has lived disease-free with pathogen X for ten years.

    Postulate 2: “The microorganism must be isolated from a diseased organism and grown in pure culture.”
    HPV is a virus, not a micro-organism. It doesn’t grow in culture. Because it’s a virus. So really, when someone is talking about virology and talks about “Koch’s Postulates” they’re very often saying “I don’t really know much about virology”.

    Postulate 3: “The cultured microorganism should cause disease when introduced into a healthy organism.” Properly stated, that’s “should” and not “must”. Because, among other things, healthy organisms have functioning immune systems. An immunocompromised organism is obviously much more at risk — this is why, for example, pregnant women are not supposed to eat cold cuts, but it’s okay for just about everyone else.

    Postulate 4:”The microorganism must be reisolated from the inoculated, diseased experimental host and identified as being identical to the original specific causative agent.”

    So, you know that the “H” in HPV stands for “Human”, right? The virus is very species-specific (and is also quite tissue-specific). You can’t really infect a mouse with HPV. You *can* graft some human tissue into an immune-deficient mouse, and infect *that* with HPV, but that is some creepy-ass weirdness and is also a highly artificial system. You could also isolate HPV from a cervical carcinoma and then use it to infect healthy human women, but you can’t really do that, nor should you be allowed to.

    The teaching of Koch’s Postulates is the overzealous biology teacher’s version of using a preposition to end a sentence with. Oh, and Duesberg couldn’t debunk a bed.

  209. #209 Joe
    June 6, 2008

    2. Further, the proposal of zur Hausen that inactivation of host suppressor genes is necessary for viral transformation is not compatible with HPV survival. Since HPV, like all small DNA viruses, needs all of its 8-kb DNA for virus replication (13), suppression of one or more HPV proteins by normal cellular genes would effectively inhibit virus replication in all normal cells. Conversely, if viral transforming proteins were not suppressed by normal cells, virus-replicating wart cells should be tumorigenic because all viral genes are highly expressed in virus replication (1, 13, 191).

    That would be a worthwhile point if viral replication were important to cell transformation. However, that’s not the case. The virus “wants” to replicate, and to do so its “strategy” involves maintaining its host cell in the active cell cycle. The HPV E6 and E7 gene products are particularly important for this, as they repress the activity of some cellular proteins that act as brakes on the cell cycle. The E2 gene product acts to limit the production of E6 and E7 products.

    In fact it’s the loss of the E2 (transcriptional regulator) gene, resulting in the overexpression of E6/E7 (oncogenes), that is typically an important event in the initiation of disease. E6/E7 transcription goes way up, de-regulating the cell cycle and possibly resulting in immortalization, resulting in continual growth, and loss of DNA proofreading, resulting in increased mutation in the cell.

  210. #210 Molecular Entry Claw foer
    June 8, 2008

    Joe,

    If the virus itself is repressed, or not expressed, how can it and even its gene products “want” or “repress” anything. If Duesberg is Socrates, does that make you Schopenhauer or Nietszche, rewriting The Pathogen as Will?