I mean for Petes sake:

Chronic fatigue syndrome researcher Judy Mikovits arrested

I mean, this is funny. No doubt this is funny.

Its funny to see The Patient Community defending Mikovits, the woman who said she didnt have a problem lying to patients when it was convenient for her.

Its funny to see The Patient Community ‘figure out’ what is going on, including the hypothesis that *I* stole the stuff (I SO DID, YOU GUAIS! I USED MY STAR TREK TRANSPORTER TO TELEPORT INTO THE WPI SEPTEMBER 30TH! I DIDNT FIGURE THIS OUT FROM PUBLICLY AVAILABLE INFO, LOL!) and that Judy is going to get shanked by Simon Wessley.

Its funny to see the WPI, like Frankenstein, getting attacked by their own monster. The ‘mobilized patient community’ they happily encouraged to attack scientists who didnt support their XMRV–>CFS narrative, is now attacking them. Its funny, and I love it.

However, I need to make it clear that I dont give a rats ass about the WPI and their books of useless notes (Im assuming everything connected to the XMRV–>CFS paper was curiously convenient contamination or active withholding of information, nothing is to believed) or their $5 flash drives or $1000 computer.

I mean, yes, Mikovits and the WPI are white trash, so yes its funny to see them fighting over a laptop and a stack of paper on ‘Judge Judy’.

But I really dont give a shit about the WPIs crap.

And I dont want Judy Mikovits in a county jail.

I want that piece of shit Science paper retracted.

I want Mikovits and Ruscetti and anyone connected to ‘withholding relevant information’ from the Science publication, causing MILLIONS and MILLIONS of dollars and man-hours of some of the smartest people on the planet to be WASTED chasing a SNIPE, during a FUNDING CRISIS… I want their asses in a federal court, explaining to a judge why, exactly, they thought their behavior was appropriate.

Comments

  1. #1 Andy Vaughan
    November 21, 2011

    Regarding the millions and millions of dollars / time wasted: Amen. Worst of all is the loss of the donations made by all the patients / advocates, many of whom were likely giving money they really couldn’t afford anyway.

    I’m almost surprised to say that I think there might be an upside to all this, in spite of the high likelihood that the Science paper is meaningless. I just saw (via XMRV Global Action on facebook) that there is a new RO1 and R21 available for CFS-related research. Honestly, I wonder whether these grants would exist were it not for the increased attention brought to ME / CFS by this whole XMRV story. That’s obviously totally speculative, just thinking out loud.

    Moreover, I do think there has been some great research that might not have otherwise been explored were it not for the Science paper. Obviously I’m a bit biased here (just published in Journal of Virology), but I do think there’s a lot of interesting data that came out of all this, even as the XMRV / CFS connection disintegrates.

    Does any of this excuse what will likely be proven to be scientific fraud committed by Mikovits? Absolutely not. Nonetheless, there is a bright side of sorts.

    – Andy Vaughan

  2. #2 Thanny
    November 21, 2011

    So, who else guessed two plus years ago, when Abbie first wrote about XMRV, that the story would end up with the lead “researcher” in jail?

  3. #3 Jon H
    November 21, 2011

    “I want their asses in a federal court, explaining to a judge why, exactly, they thought their behavior was appropriate.”

    Can we still have Judge Judy preside? Given how she tears people a new asshole over a $300 cellphone bill, I’d love to see her on a case involving serious money.

  4. #4 Matt Carey
    November 21, 2011

    I worry that this will just add to her reputation amongst her supporters. If CFS has a parallel to “AutismOne” (a parent convention), Mikovits will be invited to speak, given an award and a standing ovation.

    It is really sad to see the damage this is causing in real time. At least with Andrew Wakefield, I came to the story rather late.

  5. #5 daedalus2u
    November 21, 2011

    I think it is more “I fought someone with massive connections in the Nevada gaming industry and someone with massive connections in the Nevada gaming industry won”.

    I think it is pretty unusual for someone to be arrested and detained without bail due to a civil lawsuit that hasn’t even gone to trial yet. But I am just a scientist, so what do I know.

    However, I think they have her between a rock and a hard place. She has said a lot of things and very strongly implied that what she said was backed up by data. If that data is not to be found anywhere, where did it go? Either she lied about having stuff backed up by data, or she took the data that backs up what she said. Scientific misconduct and fraud or theft and/or destruction of propriatary information.

  6. #6 johan
    November 21, 2011

    Yes, you were and are right. Kudos for that and for the entertaining posts.
    I just want to add that there is no such thing as THE patient community. The cult of WPI (the fanatical supporters of WPI) make a lot of noise, but are probably a small minority of “the” online community and most patients (small sample size: the patients I have met IRL) don’t out themselves as patients. The patients that I know of stay clear of mecfsforums and (most of them) don’t agree with Jamie D-J or follow Saint Judy.
    Just had to get this off my chest.

    It is sad for all the patients who were mislead, but you are right that in a way it is funny that WPI is now the focal point for the anger, frustration and distrust it cultivated in its followers.

  7. #7 KL
    November 21, 2011

    Wait. Let me get this straight Erv – you are an Okie who doesn’t care about white trash. Boy are your comments illuminating. You have to be the most pleasant blogger in science hands down.

    Honestly, it’s hard to decide which is more unseemly, your gloating, cursing and name calling or the antics of the WPI and Dr. Mikovits. I’m afraid your Whack a Mole analogy was the highlight of your contribution thus far.

    PS Didn’t your mama tell you you rarely get what you want in this world and tantrums, whining and name calling rarely change that?

  8. #8 Poodle Stomper
    November 21, 2011

    Yep, I believe it was John Coffin that said that scientists would burn her at the stake and her loyal disciples would canonize her (and not the funny kind like in the Simpsons). She will end up being the next Wakefield, pushing crap “science” and making money off of her followers. It’s really sad.

  9. #9 ERV
    November 21, 2011

    Andy– Except Mikovits wasnt ‘the lone gunman’. Frank Ruscetti is the one that lied about the figure in question. And Frank is an Old Dog– I seriously doubt he performed that Western with his own two hands. So there is another person/people, whether grad students or post docs, who went along with the lie for a Science paper on their CV.

    Judy Mikovits is batshit, but we cant blame everything on her. ‘Our’ people, ‘normal’ scientists we are supposed to be able to trust had a hand in this.

    Matt– Judy Mikovits *has* presented at AutismOne :-|

  10. #10 Poodle Stomper
    November 21, 2011

    I do have to wonder, though, what the deal is with Ruscetti. I know next to nothing about him but did he have a good reputation before this? I wonder why he’d do something as obviously wrong as omit the details of the treatment the cells before the Western Blot was performed. I can’t believe it was an accident or just poor judgement as it is just too obvious that it was wrong to do so, so what’s his angle?

  11. #11 Andy Vaughan
    November 21, 2011

    Yeah, Ruscetti had a great reputation. It’s really hard to imagine what’s been going on in his head through all of this.

  12. #12 got ilk?
    November 21, 2011

    C’mon people, if you want to play in the XMRV sweepstakes with questions like “What was Frank thinking?” you’ve got to keep up with the latest. Maybe somebody spiked the samples they shared with Frank with something different than the ones they shared with Bob, just to keep it interesting.

    From the 12th Annual Symposium on Antiviral Resistance, held in Hershey PA on Nov. 8, 2011:

    Multiple Sources of Contamination in Samples from Patients Reported to Have XMRV Infection

    M.F. Kearney, J. Spindler, A. Wiegand, W. Shao, E.M. Anderson, F. Maldarelli, J.W. Mellors, S. H.
    Hughes, S.F.J. Le Grice, and J.M. Coffin

    Xenotropic murine leukemia virus (MLV)-related retrovirus (XMRV) was reported to be associated with prostate cancer by Urisman, et al. in 2006 and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) by Lombardi, et al. in 2009. To investigate this association, we independently evaluated plasma samples from 4 patients with CFS reported by Lombardi, et al. to have XMRV infection and from 5 healthy controls reported to be XMRV uninfected. We also analyzed viral sequences obtained from supernatants of cell cultures reported to contain XMRV after coculture with clinical samples from 9 patients. A qPCR assay capable of distinguishing XMRV from endogenous MLVs showed that the viral sequences detected in the CFS patient plasma matched endogenous MLVs and not XMRV. Single-genome sequences (N=89) from CFS patient plasma were indistinguishable from endogenous MLVs found in the mouse genome that are distinct from XMRV. By contrast, XMRV sequences were detected by qPCR in 2 of the 5 plasma samples from healthy controls (sequencing of the qPCR product confirmed XMRV not MLV). Single-genome sequences (N=234) from the 9 culture supernatants reportedly positive for XMRV were indistinguishable from XMRV sequences obtained from 22Rv1 and XMRV-contaminated 293T cell-lines. These results indicate that MLV DNA detected in plasma samples from CFS patients was from contaminating mouse genomic DNA and that XMRV detected in plasma samples from healthy controls and in cultures of patient samples was due to cross-contamination with XMRV (virus or nucleic acid).

    http://antiviralresistance.org/abstract26_2011.pdf

  13. #13 Levi
    November 21, 2011

    ERV, you state:
    “However, I need to make it clear that I dont give a rats ass about the WPI and their books of useless notes (Im assuming everything connected to the XMRV–>CFS paper was curiously convenient contamination or active withholding of information, nothing is to believed) or their $5 flash drives or $1000 computer.”

    Is it a fair understanding to take this statement as your educated opinion of the market value of these missing materials? Say hypothetically, for the basis of an insurance claim for loss of the disappeared materials and data? Are there scientific/accounting specialists that are able to value a body lost research in the event of theft or other types of destruction such as a non-backup/hard drive crash situation?

    Also, is there a federal law you know of that can be utilized to criminally prosecute scientists for merely causing bad research to be published? Or would you need some proof of deliberate/intentional actions on the part of a rogue researcher to successfully go after and prosecute them?

  14. #14 UKpatient
    November 21, 2011

    Dr Ruscetti has been finding these viruses, remember he said his tests are picking up a family of Gamma retroviruses.

  15. #15 UKpatient
    November 21, 2011

    if you have some time watch this NIH XMRV CONFERENCE VIDEO….

    http://videocast.nih.gov/summary.asp?live=9582

    check out what Ruscetti says!

  16. #16 Linda
    November 21, 2011

    Judging by the ironic capital letters in “the Patient Community” I assume you mean that minority on the ‘anti-science’ forums, not the other (estimated) 17 mio of us worldwide. It would be, uhm, very sad, if some of your less informed readers would not make the distinction.

  17. #17 Justicar
    November 21, 2011

    As I said to you the other day: once a person starts lying to/taking advantage of the sick and dying for any reason said person/people/group have forfeited any claim that I am to care what happens to them. They traded on the fears and suffering of sick and dying people to either promote an agenda or make money, or both. They worked very hard at this, and have thus earned whatever consequences are headed their way.

  18. #18 Justicar
    November 21, 2011

    Wait a moment! Arrests. Courts. Jail time. Ruined Careers. Bad PR.

    You’d almost think that they’d hired Marcotte at some point . . .

  19. #19 RRM
    November 21, 2011

    @daedalus2u

    I don’t think it’s likely that Mikovits was arrested because of the civil suit, despite some reports to that effect. Although I am no US criminal law expert, I think it’s very unlikely that the police could have otherwise searched a third person’s home (after Mikovits had already been arrested). I though and think it is much more likely that the Whittemores also pressed criminal charges, besides the civil lawsuit.

    Annette Whittemore confirmed this to Science:

    “The Whittemore Peterson Institute was required to report the theft of its laboratory materials to law enforcement authorities. These authorities are taking the actions that they deem necessary.”

    Make sense to me. In the case of theft, all insurance companies will (at least where I live) demand you press charges (/file a criminal complaint, whatever) with the police in order for them to consider your claim.

  20. #20 levi
    November 21, 2011

    RRM states:
    “Make sense to me. In the case of theft, all insurance companies will (at least where I live) demand you press charges (/file a criminal complaint, whatever) with the police in order for them to consider your claim”

    Good thinking RRM. That “required to report” WPI quote you mention very well makes one wonder if there is an underlying insurance claim issue. Which leads back to my question upstream of how exactly do you value the research at issue here? Cost or market value? Future income potential? If I read ERV right, she seems to think its mostly worthless flotsam at this point. If you read the WPI civil complaint, they seem to think the missing items and data are very, very valuable.

    Do you have an opinion of the missing items are worth RRM? Does that new Coffin et al research mentioned upstream in this thread make them even less valuable? Scientists typically sign away all rights to their research in favor of employers, do they not? Do they ever bother to try to figure out the potential value of the rights they are signing away beforehand?

  21. #21 Anonymous
    November 21, 2011

    Congrats on one of the snarkiest blogs ever! Your lack of insight is refreshing. Your understanding of the broad concept of what it means to be “a patient” is utterly reassuring. At least I can rest peacefully with the knowledge that the future of HIV research will fall into the hands of mediocre scientists. Yawn. Whatever.

  22. #22 Amy
    November 21, 2011

    As others have said, whilst you have been right all along about Mikovits and the WPI, please don’t fall into the trap of linking ” the patient community” with one wacky forum which has a handful of members. It’s a misportrayal and insult to the rest of CFS patients who are largely rational. And it keeps up the “CFS patients are all crazies” narrative. You clearly care about truth and accuracy but your portrayal of things is sloppy in this one respect. Otherwise, keep up the good work.

  23. #23 TCC
    November 21, 2011

    The lab notebooks and computer have little intrinsic value, but I think to WPI they might be much more valuable if they could use them to show that Judy was a fraud and then blame the whole thing on her. They might view this as their only chance at recovering WPIs reputation.

  24. #24 Justicar
    November 21, 2011

    Nonny, you’re saying that you can rest in the same way Mikovits’ career can? In peace?

    Well, whatever gets you through the day.

  25. #25 RRM
    November 21, 2011

    @Levi

    Well, my guess is that the possible damage is not really in the “value of the research”. It is most likely to be considered to be pretty worthless I guess, but I think the real danger lies in WPI losing their grant(s) if they don’t retrieve their data. Which, I might add, is a good reason for why WPI isn’t making this shit up.

    I believe their largest grant is 300k/year, but, I don’t know if this is expected to be covered by insurance (the same goes for future research value).

    It could also be that the NIH required the WPI pressing charges BTW.

  26. #26 Joe
    November 21, 2011

    @TCC – I think that may be the most plausible explanation.

    The whole meltdown between Dr. Judy and WPI happened shortly after the retractions were published and after Science said that they were going to investigate some of the issues highlighted here on erv’s blog and elsewhere.

    The story for public consumption was something to the effect that Lombardi wanted to look at some cell lines and that Mikovits objected because it would somehow violate some NIH rule.

    I think that it is very plausible that WPI wanted to investigate Mikovits for possible scientific fraud or misconduct and that she realized what they were up to and grabbed her notes and skipped town.

  27. #27 Bill Door
    November 21, 2011

    ERV, elk herder:

    I want that piece of shit Science paper retracted. I want Mikovits and Ruscetti and anyone connected to ‘withholding relevant information’ from the Science publication, causing MILLIONS and MILLIONS of dollars and man-hours of some of the smartest people on the planet to be WASTED chasing a SNIPE, during a FUNDING CRISIS… I want their asses in a federal court, explaining to a judge why, exactly, they thought their behavior was appropriate.

    Quote related… though in this case, you’re more like Eliot Ness.

  28. #28 ERV
    November 21, 2011

    What is this I dont even…

    An arrest warrant issued by the University of Nevada at Reno lists two felony charges: possession of stolen property and conspiracy.

    Wat??

  29. #29 levi
    November 22, 2011

    ERV @27 states:

    “Wat?”

    Abbie, I guess you probably understand the concept of possessing stolen property. So it must be the conspiracy charge that is throwing you. Here is a short primer: most law first year law school students find conspiracy to be a real eye opener.

    The elements are simple: two or more people agreeing to commit a crime, even minor one, and (((viola))) – you have a serious felony. Of course, there are statutory variations on this, but I will keep it simple like you do when you explain science to us civilians.

    You could ask your lab partner to swipe a test tube for you, and in theory find yourself sentenced to years of hard time if a meeting of the minds occurs. Conspiracy is a very potent prosecution tool. The preferred strategy in the case I just outlined for successful prosecution is to get your lab partner to “roll” on you, confess, and make a deal to avoid said hard time him/herself. Since all conspiracy participants are held responsible for the felony, the leverage is strong.

    If your school has security cameras, and someone complains about that missing test tube, it makes the school security crews job all that much easier. Of course, I am in the dark about the actual facts here, so we will see what develops soon.

  30. #30 William Wallace
    November 22, 2011

    some of the smartest people on the planet to be WASTED chasing a SNIPE

    Smart people don’t go on snipe hunts.

  31. #31 theshortearedowl
    November 22, 2011

    I hope the patients who poisoned themselves with anti-retrovirals because they were lied to will be able to sue too.

  32. #32 Anonymous
    November 22, 2011
  33. #33 Pipsqueak
    November 22, 2011

    Since when did a university issue arrest warrants?

    Please tell me that this is a reporting error by Tsouderos rather than US law being even odder than it looks from my perspective on the other side of the world.

  34. #34 autiemum
    November 22, 2011

    Hi Pipsqueak,

    Wikipaedia says http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Campus_police

    The US is very strange but they do it in Canada too.

  35. #35 scramton
    November 22, 2011

    What a freak show!! Does that mean I have to return all those CDs with data on them I have lying around my apartment?

  36. #36 AJ
    November 22, 2011

    If you removed them from Judy Mikovits’s desk, then yes.

  37. #37 scramton
    November 22, 2011

    The only reason I can think of to go to Reno is to play blackjack or poker after a day of skiing in the sierras

  38. #38 bella
    November 22, 2011

    As scientists, have you no interest in either of the following?:

    1. Benefit from B-Lymphocyte Depletion Using the Anti-CD20 Antibody Rituximab in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. A Double-Blind and Placebo-Controlled Study http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0026358

    2. How contempt for people with ME has become a part of your outlook. Did you choose it? As scientists, don’t you wonder why ME is the only physical or mental (depending on your opinion) disease where contempt is an acceptable response to those who live with it? One example is the description of those people with ME who still support Dr Mikovits or the WPI. Personally, I do not share their feelings of loyalty, at all, but I don’t despise them for it – I see it as indicative of a neglected people who have felt hope that their long suffering might end, and who cannot bear to let go of that hope. No, it’s not very scientific, but it is very human. Do you not have any compassion for that? For people who feel that desperate for help?

    PS. Erv, your care and rage regarding the effect of non-vaccination on children is obviously genuine. But why does it not extend publicly to children with ME? Jane Colby, Director of The Young ME Sufferers Trust, describes some of the young patients she sees: ‘Many of these are children, some severely ill, suffering unbearable neuropathic pain, unable to be cuddled and too weak to stand.’ http://www.imt.ie/opinion/2011/04/doctor-showed-himself-up-with-lack-of-knowledge.html
    These children bear this, and often removal from their families, inappropriate treatment and/or medical disbelief – all as a result of the unquestioned acceptance of the psychological model of ME. Surely this outrages you too? It does me.

  39. #39 mary
    November 22, 2011

    *sigh* What a mess.. I thought that since the real science had prevailed, Gerwyn et. al, had been silenced and stopped postiing pseudoscience..but I see he has just started his own forum so he can have the research thread to himself…

    He was probably a nice person at some point, but he is also part of the damage caused by WPI and she who must not be named…

    ERV readers do not lump all patients together and think them nuts…despite being snarky!

  40. #40 daedalus2u
    November 22, 2011

    For insurance purposes, the value of scientific data would be its replacement cost. If the data cannot be replaced (i.e. replicated), then it is not “scientific data” and so has zero value.

    The more they try to portray this data as unique and irreplaceable, the less value it has as scientific data.

  41. #41 Mu
    November 22, 2011

    As JM proclaimed loudly that it’s all “her” research, looks like one of her admirers made sure she got “her” stuff. That would explain the stolen property and conspiracy without an actual theft charge.

  42. #42 Smurfette
    November 22, 2011

    @31

    You mean this…?

    http://web.archive.org/web/20071013033433/http://www.americanbioceuticals.com/

    They had these homeopathic remedies selling in CVS. Smells like the motivation is money rather than health:

    http://www.nnbw.com/ArticleRead.aspx?storyID=8582

  43. #43 Poodle Stomper
    November 22, 2011

    @Mu,
    I’d guess that if she did not take them herself, that it’s probably another lab member that worked with her. I think it would be a bit obvious if a stranger unknown to anyone were walking around the lab with a bunch of notebooks. Just my opinion, though.

    @Mary,
    Yeah, I’ve seen some of Gerwyn’s crap floating around. It’s a bunch of misinformed BS resulting in incorrect conclusions. The guy doesn’t seem to have a clue what he/she is talking about which, of course, only serves to convince him/her all the more that he/she is right. Ah, Dunning-Kruger!

  44. #44 ERV
    November 22, 2011

    My readers are smart :)

  45. #45 jaranath
    November 22, 2011

    WillyWally:

    No, but they do go on ivory-billed woodpecker hunts. And when (if ever) you understand the very real distinction, you’ll have taken your first step toward rationality.

    Wouldn’t heart if you’d also learn to avoid conflating ignorance with stupidity along the way…

  46. #46 RRM
    November 22, 2011

    Perhaps the vitamin business is how the Whittemores got to know Mikovits:
    http://www.bigplanetusa.com/library/NSE/pdf/celebrate_1005_accolades.pdf
    (last page, top row)

    In other breaking news, AoU has issued an “Expression of Concern” (LOL) regarding the arrest of Mikovits:
    http://www.ageofautism.com/2011/11/age-of-autism-issues-expression-of-concern-on-arrest-and-incarceration-of-dr-judy-mikovits.html

  47. #47 ERV
    November 22, 2011

    Quote AoA: “The normal manner of resolving such disputes has not been followed in this case.”

    Theres a reason for that.

    Everything will make sense when Trine updates her article. Mikovits is *batshit insane*.

  48. #48 RRM
    November 22, 2011

    That timeline by Trine is obviously wrong!

    While the Paprotka paper was supposed to be published June 2nd, because (ahum) someone leaked the retraction request/editorial expression of concern to the WSJ, Science decided to publish the paper(s) May 31st.

    Yes, I have been reading too much about XMRV…

  49. #49 Aj
    November 22, 2011

    Everything will make sense when Trine updates her article. Mikovits is *batshit insane*.

    Judy Mikovits is the president of Madagascar.
    (or am I just imagining that the sidebar to the Tribune story is recreating the “Shut Down Everything” meme?)

  50. #50 levi
    November 22, 2011

    Trine, Trine. Not all ME/CFS patients are complete lemmings. Folks that hold that view just do not know lemmings:
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/11/18/lemmings_green_the_arctic/

  51. #51 Ethan Siegel
    November 22, 2011

    ERV, I want them to pin a medal on you for not only being the sane voice in favor of taking out the trash, but for both doing the legwork of taking it out and laying the incredibly convincing smackdown on anyone with the misinformed notion that the maggot-infected pile of tripe on the floor isn’t actually trash.

    Because there’s real science to be done, and all that garbage in the lab really makes it hard for all the good, honest, ethical scientists out there to do their jobs.

  52. #52 RRM
    November 22, 2011

    Trine apparently received bad info regarding the charges (check her Twitter). She now updated her article accordingly:

    “felony charges: possession of stolen property and unlawful taking of computer data, equipment, supplies or other computer related property.”

  53. #53 levi
    November 22, 2011

    RRM states:
    .Trine apparently received bad info regarding the charges .(check her Twitter). She now updated her article accordingly:
    .
    .”felony charges: possession of stolen property and unlawful .taking of computer data, equipment, supplies or other .computer related property.”

    Not good RRM, reporters are supposed to independently verify information like that before publishing. ERV, please delete my post @28 that discusses general conspiracy law in fairness and to avoid any confusion.

  54. #54 ERV
    November 22, 2011

    Update– Not all the juicy details, but something:

    “On Monday evening, Mikovits’ former employer, the Whittemore Peterson Institute for Neuro-Immune Disease in Reno, filed signed affidavits in district court in which a coworker states that she enlisted him to take the lab notebooks for her.

    The affidavit from graduate student researcher Max Pfost states that he used her desk and office keys to take 12 to 20 lab notebooks, which he hid at his house in a large, multi-colored “Happy Birthday” gift bag before turning them over to Mikovits in mid-October.

    “As I left for work at WPI that morning, Mikovits further requested that I keep her informed as to the whereabouts of WPI personnel so that Mikovits could avoid detection in Reno,” Pfost wrote.

    The affidavit also states that Mikovits had the two of them set up “a new separate email account for our secret communications about WPI” and that Mikovits told Pfost she was hiding on a boat “to avoid being served with papers from WPI.

  55. #55 MattK
    November 22, 2011

    Trine has updated the article:

    On Monday evening, Mikovits’ former employer, the Whittemore Peterson Institute for Neuro-Immune Disease in Reno, filed signed affidavits in district court in which a coworker states that she enlisted him to take the lab notebooks for her.

    The affidavit from graduate student researcher Max Pfost states that he used her desk and office keys to take 12 to 20 lab notebooks, which he hid at his house in a large, multi-colored “Happy Birthday” gift bag

    Also there is a bit about Mikovits hiding out on a boat to avoid being served.

  56. #56 mary
    November 22, 2011

    Holy crap..what a slime ball…wonder how long it will take before Max gets creamated by the whorde..they were supporting him earlier..

    judy should just return the shit humbly, beg WPI to drop charges, and crawl under a rock..

    Geez, hiding on a boat..effing coward..

  57. #57 OWE
    November 22, 2011

    The story writers in Hollywood should closly watch this story unfolding. They might make a first class thriller out of it. I propose the title: “XMRV – nothing sells like fear”, “based on a true story” etc…

    Please excuse my sarcasm!

    OWE

  58. #58 Prometheus
    November 22, 2011

    I would have preferred Judy to have evaded capture and the Whittemores pursuing her in some sort of giant chartered harpoon boat.

    “Pequod II” or something. The princess who shall not be named could wuther on the poop deck while Annette scanned the horizon for a dingy flying a lab coat.

  59. #59 levi
    November 22, 2011

    Trine, make up your mind. ERV, disregard my request @51.

    “Now, in a stunning twist, Mikovits is sitting in a California jail cell, held without bond, awaiting an arraignment hearing Tuesday. An arrest warrant issued by University of Nevada at Reno police lists two felony charges: possession of stolen property and conspiracy.”
    http://www.chicagotribune.com/health/ct-nw-chronic-fatigue-scientist-arrest-20111122,0,5455739.story

  60. #60 frozenwarnings
    November 22, 2011

    “judy should just return the shit humbly, beg WPI to drop charges, and crawl under a rock..”

    I presume that’s exactly what she’s trying now her husband has asked the twatvocates to shut up and stop criticising the WPI while they’re in “negotiations”

  61. #61 Anonymous
    November 22, 2011

    Christ almighty. I feel sorry for all the people that got sucked into Mikovits vortex of lies. Apparently, Mikovits husband, on behalf of the fugitive thief, has asked people to stop dissing the WPI because it’s making it worse for her. I consider this to be more of the same manipulation.

    As far as not dissing da WPI, it’s a bit too late for that. The damage is done, can’t take it back cause da internet never forgets. I have one question for Judy Mikovits, why the hell should people shut up, you started it, now finish it with an honest accounting of what you have done and why you did it. For the glory was it? or to keep your mistakes out of the hands of others? or to have your adoring fanbase kissing your saintly thieving feet for all eternity?.

  62. #62 levi
    November 22, 2011

    More expansive details and analysis here:
    http://phoenixrising.me/archives/6340

  63. #63 Poodle Stomper
    November 22, 2011

    The affidavit from graduate student researcher Max Pfost states that he used her desk and office keys to take 12 to 20 lab notebooks, which he hid at his house in a large, multi-colored “Happy Birthday” gift bag before turning them over to Mikovits in mid-October.

    Crap, well there goes his career, too. I don’t think anyone reputable would hire him after he did this. The fact that he hid them indicates he knew very well that what he was doing was wrong/illegal. Way to drag others down with you, Judy!

  64. #64 Poodle Stomper
    November 22, 2011

    More expansive details and analysis here:
    http://phoenixrising.me/archives/6340

    Holy cow. No wonder WPI was pissed. According to the article:
    “According to the affadavit Dr. Mikovits also attempted to have biological materials including cell lines and blood samples removed from the labs as well. At Dr. Mikovits behest Pfost attempted to recruit other WPI employees to remove these materials from the lab and send them to Dr. Ruscetti. According to the affidavit research assistant Amanda McKenzie, declined to do so.”

    Someone (or more than one someone) is going to go down big time if this is proven in court.

  65. #65 Anonymouse
    November 22, 2011

    Hooray (Wildaisy on the mecfsforums), apparently Mikovits has been released on bail. I am not sure why this is a hooray moment. She’s still guilty, she will still have to answer to the charges etc, etc, etc. Some people are stll thinking this is all the WPI’s fault. Hello McFly, but Judy chose to be a thief, they didn’t force her to be a thief. I can’t seem to access the Ventura Superior Courts information about what went on today. No doubt it will be posted at some point.

  66. #66 Anonymouse
    November 22, 2011

    Was able to access the records re: Ventura Superior Court

    It states:

    11/22/2011 Defendant remanded to custody of Sheriff in lieu of bail in the amount of $100,000.00 .

  67. #68 Justicar
    November 22, 2011

    Prometheus @ 56: you always crack my shit up.

  68. #69 RRM
    November 22, 2011

    I must say that I am surprised to see Ruscetti’s name pop up in the statements by both Pfost and McKenzie.

    judy should just return the shit humbly, beg WPI to drop charges, and crawl under a rock.

    Regarding the civil procedure, you’re right. However, criminal prosecution serves public interests and should not be stopped at the wished of the (supposed) victim of a crime. Although, of course, in certain cases the cooperation of the (supposed) victim is essential for a succesful prosecution.

    In this case, I sure hope the DA will seriously consider prosecuting the persons thought to be responsible, regardless of the WPI’s wishes/cooperation.

  69. #70 LJ
    November 22, 2011

    I am just amazed at this story.
    1. Max is damn lucky he didn’t take the notebooks and send them via mail. By putting a US or using FedEx to mail stolen property becomes a serious federal offense.
    2. I can’t believe Ruscetti was willing to receive stolen material as well. He either didn’t know it was stolen or is just as unethical as Judy which may not be a stretch considering she was trained by him.
    3. Lastly, I suspect the request by Judy to stop the ME/CFS Forum attach against WPI is not because they are in negotiations with WPI but because the Forum is making WPI’s case for the “irreparable” harm claim in the Complaint filed. All WPI has to do is produce the website forum postings to show how they have been damaged in light of the theft.

  70. #71 Mu
    November 22, 2011

    There’s a great comment on all this on the “patient” forum, by the moderator no less:
    Whatever Dr. Mikovits did or did not do I’m sure was in the interest of saving our lives and giving them back.

    With fans like that …

  71. #72 Bill Door
    November 22, 2011

    #61

    Crap, well there goes his career, too.

    Actually, looking at the documents linked to in #65, his career may be the least of his worries. He actually did almost all of the dirty work! Typical, too… grad student does the work, PI gets the credit.Though, I must say, what a level of dedication and loyalty on the part of a grad student. Professors everywhere will be jealous. That whole cloak-and-dagger thing they had, with the fake emails, safe houses, etc., was impressive.

  72. #73 RRM
    November 22, 2011

    Well, I was already wondering why he posted (briefly) under the handle of “madmax” at the Phoenix Rising forums….

  73. #74 Anonymouse
    November 22, 2011

    @68 — damage already done even if the crazies stop posting about the evul WPI. I would assume that most of them have sent nasty emails to the evul WPI.

    The crazies seem to alluding to the fact that the evul WPI has been telling Max what to say to destroy the credibility of Mikovits. So under oath, he lies while destroying his reputation. These crazy sheeple fanatics of Saint Mikovits fail to realize that most of what Max Pfost has said can be verified. Things like emails contain IP addresses, cell phone records can be accessed, rental car companies keep records etc, etc.

    I saw where Max did all the PCR work. I also saw in the affadavit where Mikovits was trying to get Max to steal all Petersons records too – that goes behind the need to move your research elsewhere now doesn’t it.

    Judy must be home now washing the jailhouse stink off her saintly body. Guess she won’t have to sleep with her shiv tonight.

    Who is going to play Judy in the movie of the week?

  74. #75 RRM
    November 22, 2011

    Who is going to play Judy in the movie of the week?

    Charlize Theron’s excellent performance in Monster springs to mind.

  75. #76 Andy Vaughan
    November 22, 2011

    hey RRM, do you have a copy of Max’s post on Phoenix rising?

    After reading Pfost’s affidavit, I’m left with a weird feeling in the pit of my stomach. Their relationship was waaaay beyond what is appropriate for a PI and grad student. While I still think he was put in a totally unreasonable position, he had so many opportunities to stop helping her…

  76. #77 Anonymouse
    November 22, 2011

    @ 73 — I was thinking for along the lines of Miss Piggy. The whole saga could be a new Muppet Movie. Max Pfost could be played by Beaker. Gerwyn and V99 could be played by the two old hecklers that sit in the back of the movie theater.

  77. #78 UKPatient
    November 22, 2011

    Everyone wants xmrv over but it just won’t stop.
    This virus has legs!

  78. #79 Poodle Stomper
    November 22, 2011

    Hmm, according to the affidavit, Mikovits wanted to stop the ongoing Lipkin study…I wonder why /sarcasm. Also, I agree. It seems like something less than savory was going on with Judy and her grad student. Something seems off in the way he described his actions.

  79. #80 Anonymouse
    November 22, 2011

    Andy Vaughan

    MadMax’s posts can be found on this thread

    http://phoenixrising.me/forums/showthread.php?5428-Addenda-to-the-Science-paper/page3

  80. #81 Jon H
    November 22, 2011

    “Charlize Theron’s excellent performance in Monster springs to mind.”

    Not Kathy Bates in Misery?

  81. #82 got ilk?
    November 22, 2011

    @74: You mean it’s not common practice for a PI to expect her post-doc to be mentee, lab rat, secretary, tenant, moving crew, chauffeur, drinking buddy, pillow pal, confidante, thief, shipper, getaway driver, fence AND conspirator?

  82. #83 Poodle Stomper
    November 22, 2011

    Awfully strange that Max’s affidavit also corroborates the WPI version of why Judy got sacked (insubordination) and not Judy’s (everyone else’s fault but hers).

    Pillow pal…yeah I kinda got the same vibe. Creepy if it’s the case.

  83. #84 Bill Door
    November 22, 2011

    #74 Vaughan

    While I still think he was put in a totally unreasonable position, he had so many opportunities to stop helping her…

    If his science career goes in the toilet, I hear Penn State has an opening for a football coach. Sounds like a perfect match.

    But, seriously, this relationship between Pfost and Mikovits is bizarre. I would narc on my PI in an instant if he suggested doing something like this. Then again, I’m neither (a) sleeping with him, or (b) his co-conspirator in research fraud, so maybe I don’t understand this level of closeness. If your grad school PI commits fraud and you have nothing to do with it, your career isn’t necessarily over – in fact, people would probably have sympathy for you, and you could go on and still be a success. So I have a hard time understanding why Pfost cares so much, unless he’s been fucking his data or his boss.

  84. #85 qetzal
    November 22, 2011

    This stuff is unreal! Here’s my prediction.

    We’ll soon hear that this has actually all been perpetrated by Judy’s evil twin, Jodi. Judy herself has been suffering from amnesia for the last five years, working as a bartender in some country club (snort!). Any day now, Judy will get struck on the head by a bottle of rum and recover her memory. Jodi, realizing the jig is up, will disappear – taking the stolen notebooks and cell lines with her to sell on the black market and finance her lavish life on the Riviera.

    Meanwhile, Judy’s internet supporters, immediately recognizing the ring of truth in Judy’s story, will rally to her defense, insisting that Simon Wessely and his evil minions stop claiming that amnesia is a neurological disorder and admit once and for all that it’s caused by XMRV.

  85. #86 daedalus2u
    November 22, 2011

    So who plays ERV?

    What is funny is that the movie of this drama will make a lot more money than the bogus research ever would.

  86. #87 Justicar
    November 22, 2011

    Oh, I remember when this happened. I remember how the entire nation was gripped with paralysis sorting through who shot JR.

  87. #88 qetzal
    November 22, 2011

    I’m thinking more Soap than Dallas.

  88. #89 eek
    November 22, 2011

    Dressed in a prison-issued blue jump suit with an orange T-shirt underneath, Mikovits entered the courtroom and took a seat on a bench already occupied by a few dozen similarly dressed male and female inmates. They sat in a large room-within-the-room that had white metal bars for walls. They looked like they were in a cage. Four bailiffs with Taser guns strolled around the open part of the court. The other inmates included heavily muscled and tattooed men and street-tough women. The 53-year-old scientist, who has been in jail since last Friday, appeared composed but wildly out of place.

    http://news.sciencemag.org/scienceinsider/2011/11/inmate-mikovits-meets-judge.html?ref=ra

  89. #90 Anonymouse
    November 22, 2011

    Just goes to show you, all criminals are not tatooed wild looking animals.

  90. #91 Andy Vaughan
    November 23, 2011

    For the record, when I talked about their relationship being inappropriate, I in no way meant to suggest it was sexual. I don’t want to be associated with that sort of speculation.

    Regarding Max’s responsibility in this situation: I think this is more complicated than just saying that he knowingly aided in committing a crime. Who knows what Judy told him? She may very well have had him convinced that she was being legitimately persecuted by a morally-bankrupt WPI. Clearly she’s been very good at pulling the wool over the eyes of much of the patient community, and indeed much of the scientific community, at least early on. I think it’s fair to allow the possibility that Max was manipulated and is more of a victim than a criminal. After all, he may very well have gone to the WPI with his confession on his own.

  91. #92 popi
    November 23, 2011

    @Andy:

    well, according to this document:
    http://s3.documentcloud.org/documents/268451/exh-1-reply-iso-motion-for-preliminary-injunction.pdf

    Max was living in a “residence owned by Mikovits” (see point 6)…

    isn’t that wired??

  92. #93 popi
    November 23, 2011

    I suspect he will impersonate himself in the movie:

    https://plus.google.com/101117820435590277068/posts

  93. #94 levi
    November 23, 2011

    daedalus2u@84

    Yes of course, the movie. I am sort of liking Ellen Page for the part of ERV. Great acting chops and snarky too. As well as a dog lover. I was impressed with her work in “Hard Candy”.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ellen_Page

  94. #95 RRM
    November 23, 2011

    …unless he’s been fucking his data or his boss.

    In both cases, I’d retract.

  95. #96 got ilk?
    November 23, 2011

    Two morning musings:

    I wonder how many science writers/bloggers who have followed this story (ERV, Tsouderos, Cohen, Maher, Dove, Callaway, Kaiser, Enserink, Marcus) will choose multi-colored “Happy Birthday” bags for their holiday gift-giving? Are leather-bound notebooks on the Brooks Brothers “best gifts” list this year?

    Cohen wrote of Mikovits in his “False Positive” story in September: “Mikovits shouted during one interview, her blue-gray eyes shooting fire.” Do you think the blue inmate jumpsuit set off or competed with her eyes?

  96. #97 deetee
    November 23, 2011

    I assume Judy lived at the Palladio condo, and Max at the Riverwalk condo, which was “owned by Mikovits”. Judy stayed over at the Riverwalk condo after Max picked her up from Reno airport on 17th October.

    When Max got home from work the next day, Judy and the “items” were all gone.

    Gah! Know how you feel Max… been there, done that.

  97. #98 Jon H
    November 23, 2011

    @84: “What is funny is that the movie of this drama will make a lot more money than the bogus research ever would.”

    Unfortunately, a movie would probably depict her as being right, and being persecuted by corrupt pawns of Big Pharma.

  98. #99 OWE
    November 23, 2011
  99. #100 In Vitro Infidelium
    November 23, 2011

    ERV wrote I want Mikovits and Ruscetti and anyone connected to ‘withholding relevant information’ from the Science publication, causing MILLIONS and MILLIONS of dollars and man-hours of some of the smartest people on the planet to be WASTED chasing a SNIPE, during a FUNDING CRISIS… I want their asses in a federal court, explaining to a judge why, exactly, they thought their behavior was appropriate.

    Absolutely – but in getting the scientists to be answerable (and let’s not forget Lombardi), the WPI (and by association the University of Nevada) also have questions to answer. In the case of the WPI, its licensing of a test lacking any independent validation, to the VIPdx laboratory which marketed the test and for which it gained income in the region of $1 million, requires explicit explanation. Individuals, including those who were inevitably desperate and somewhat fragile were encouraged to pay up to $750 for a test which although worthless, encouraged belief in patients that they had disease comparable to HIV. Accademic wrong doing must be exposed, but it must not obscure the corporate failings at WPI and potentially at the UofN.

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