HIV/AIDS Skepticism

Pointing to evidence that HIV is not the necessary and sufficient cause of AIDS

Archive for October, 2008

Nobel Prize Citation for “HIV” “Discovery”: Errors and Deficiencies

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2008/10/16

I’m grateful to Stefan R. for providing the link to the full citation by the Nobel Committee, which I hadn’t located by Googling. Here are a few of the deficiencies that jumped out on first reading.

The initial appearance of AIDS is said to have been in “clusters of previously healthy young men”, repeating mindlessly a worn, faulty shibboleth. Michelle Cochrane (When AIDS Began: San Francisco and the Making of an Epidemic, 2004), however, looked at the original medical records and found that they were anything but “previously healthy”, and “young” would apply only if that is taken to mean people in the middle to upper 30s (The Origin, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory, p. 187 ff.).

It is more subtly misleading, but misleading nonetheless, to say that they “suffered from different life threatening medical conditions”. A crucial clue to what AIDS really was in the early 1980s is the fact that the original victims displayed predominantly two types of condition: Kaposi’s sarcoma (KS), a disorder of blood vessels that was almost certainly the direct result of excessive inhalation of nitrites, and fungal infections — chiefly Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (PCP) and candidiasis — that followed excessive indulgence in practices that destroy the intestinal microflora which normally keep those endemic fungi in check [see Tony Lance, “Gay-Related Intestinal Dysbiosis”, in “What really caused AIDS: Slicing through the Gordian Knot”, 20 February 2008]. Those two types of condition accounted for more than 80% of the 16,000 AIDS cases recorded through 1985; that percentage decreased gradually only after “HIV-positive” rather than clinical condition became the criterion for an AIDS diagnosis.

The assertion, “A huge epidemiological survey initiated by CDC in 1982 concluded that the AIDS syndrome had spread globally”, lacks a sorely needed specific reference.
The CDC Report for 8 July 1982 cites 452 cases, 441 from 23 states in the USA and only 11 from other (unnamed) countries. Reports for 1983 and later refer specifically only to the United States. The Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report of 24 September 1982 mentions 597 cases within the USA and an additional 41 cases from 10 foreign countries. That hardly seems like the outcome of a “huge epidemiological survey” that discovered a global epidemic.

“A subset of the population at particular risk for this syndrome appeared to be homosexual males and intravenous drug users” is also subtly misleading about a condition that seemed and seems to be virtually restricted to those groups in most parts of the world.

“The immunodeficiency was associated with rapid elimination of CD4+ T cells” cites 71: Gottlieb MS, Schroff R, Schanker HM, and Saxon A. Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia and mucosal candidiasis in previously healthy homosexual men: evidence of a new acquired cellular immunodeficiency. N Engl J Med. 1981;305:1425-31, which does “associate” — correlate — AIDS with low CD4+ counts, but doesn’t and could not speak to “rapid elimination” (as well as being wrong about the “previously healthy”, see above). Gottlieb et al., moreover, reported in detail on only 4 cases, hardly a basis for any sweeping generalization; and the association they thought most pronounced was with cytomegalovirus.

“The clinical AIDS spectrum was defined as repeated opportunistic infections . . . occurring in previously healthy adults with no history of inherited disorders” follows a sentence mentioning haemophiliacs among the risk groups; yet haemophiliacs do have an inherited disorder.

An interesting sentence is [emphases added] “Malignancies associated with AIDS included an aggressive type of Kaposi’s sarcoma caused by human Herpes virus 8, EBV-associated lymphoma, HPV-induced cervical cancer, and Hodgkin’s disease (75)”. Thus it is clearly acknowledged that at least 3 of the 4 malignancies are caused by something other than HIV; and moreover the citation is wrong: (75) is “Rozenbaum W. Multiple opportunistic infections in a male homosexual in France. Lancet. 1982; 6;1(8271):572-3”, a letter of 5 paragraphs in which none of those malignancies is mentioned.

“The disorder also manifested as slim disease due to chronic incurable diarrhoea, particularly in Africa”. So: is “chronic incurable diarrhoea” an opportunistic infection owing to immunedeficiency, or perhaps a malignancy?

“Epidemiological studies had already been [sic] established that AIDS was transmitted sexually, via placenta to foetuses and via transfusion by plasma and coagulation products (76)”; 76 is: Francis DP, Curran JW, Essex M. Epidemic acquired immune deficiency syndrome: epidemiologic evidence for a transmissible agent. J Natl Cancer Inst. 1983;71(1):1-4.
That article does much less than “establish” those things (in fact, the piece is labeled a Guest Editorial, hardly the sort of thing one cites as “establishing” anything). That “the syndrome has appeared almost simultaneously in socially disparate and distinct population groups who share only their predilection for other infectious diseases” merely suggests a connection with sexually transmitted diseases, while avoiding the issue of outbreaks distributed in widely separated geographic locations. That “80% . . . [of AIDS victims were] between 25 and 44”, on the other hand, hardly points to an infectious agent, since those are typically more dangerous to the very young and the very old. The remark [emphasis added] that “this putative agent must circulate in the blood” again does much less than even claim to “establish” an infectious cause. Moreover, Francis et al. acknowledge that any unifying hypothesis encounters the dilemma that KS occurs almost exclusively in only one of the risk groups. Hindsight reveals that this editorial was also wrong on two rather important counts: that PCP is a fungal infection, not a parasitic one, and that the supposed latent period is on the order of 10-15 years (the Nobel Committee’s estimate) rather than ≥12 months.

“A number of pieces of evidence pointed towards a retroviral origin for the acquired immune deficiency; the clusters of patients affected, the transmission via filtered blood products and the establishment of loss of CD4 T helper lymphocytes” is an extraordinary statement; there was no precedent for a retrovirus killing off CD4 cells, so how could this “point towards” such an interpretation? Furthermore, transmission by filtered blood would indicate a virus, but not necessarily a retrovirus. That clusters of people were affected doesn’t even indict an infectious agent, it could be an environmental factor, like — say — the gastric cancers in Chinese and other  locations where nitrites or nitrosamines are for some reason present in exceptionally high amounts (e.g., You et al., Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention 5 [1996] 47-52).

The “discovery” of the “retrovirus” is described in considerable detail, the salient step being the first one: “Virus production was detected by reverse transcriptase (RT) enzyme activity in supernatants from cultured and activated lymphocytes obtained from a lymph node from a patient with lymphadenopathy”; “They cultured purified lymphocytes from such patients in vitro in the presence of the phytohaemagglutinin (PHA)-mitogen, interleukin-2 (IL-2) and anti-interferon-a in order to allow T cell proliferation” — in other words, as several Rethinkers have pointed out, the “virus” was created in a witch’s brew designed to stimulate proliferation of the very cells supposedly killed by the virus; and the presence of a retrovirus was inferred from the fact of reverse transcriptase activity — and, later, it turned out that such activity is routinely present as part of normal cell function. There was no isolation of virus particles from a supposedly infected individual.

And so on. Rethinkers will relish such statements as “In 1985 the nucleotide sequence of the full AIDS virus genome was established”, since this was done by indirect inference without ever having access to a genuine virion. It may turn out to be unwittingly prescient, though, that “The retrovirus family consists of the Oncovirus (including HTLV-I & -II), Lentivirus (including HIV-1 &-2) and Spumavirus also called foamy virus and the so far considered non-pathogenic, Endogenous retrovirus”, since “HIV” could well belong to the Endogenous and non-pathogenic class.

The origin and spread of “HIV” in Africa are illustrated nicely by a Figure showing transmission routes out of Cameroon (thick brown lines with arrows, arrowheads enhanced for easier viewing):

However, it is not explained why the virus has remained largely in southern Africa rather than in the other places to which it  headed and which are closer to its origin, though that fact is properly illustrated in another Figure:

Note, by the way, that the USA is relatively little “infected” even though this was where AIDS first appeared; and that Eastern Europe and Russia are significantly more infected even though the epidemic there is said to be carried largely by injecting drug users! [“HIV/AIDS illustrates cognitive dissonance”, 29 April 2008]. This Figure also displays the extraordinary ability of “HIV” to quarantine itself at regional boundaries. One might also quibble about the choice of a category of “1.0 – ≤5.0 %”, since this gives the Russian Federation, at an estimated 1.1%, a deeper color and more prominent presence than almost any other region outside Africa, the others being Papua at 1.8%, Thailand at 1.4%, and thereby understates how quarantined middle and southern Africa at ≥5% are from the rest of the world at ≤2%.

The detailed description of how HIV works is rather at odds with the several publications which confess that this remains a mystery, for example, “The pathogenic and physiologic processes leading to AIDS remain a conundrum” (Grossman et al., Nature Medicine 12 [2006] 289-95); and the Nobel description is itself a shade mystifying, for example, “Immune activation and inflammation supplies additional activated CD4+ T cells, which both sustain infection and elicit an immunosuppressive response that blunts host defences. Although increasing numbers of cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) partially control infection they do not prevent, in the absence of therapy, the slow and continued depletion of CD4+ T cells that is responsible for the occurrence of the immune deficiency that eventually leads to AIDS” [emphases added]. This is a fascinating double-barreled action during the postulated latent period of about 10 years during which “viral load” is very low; with the explanatory barrels pointing in opposite directions, that seems rather hazardous to one’s (mental) health. There are similarly puzzling explanations of “host defence” and its sophisticated evasion by “HIV”. None of these explanations are labeled speculative, as they should properly be.

The Nobel Committee’s erratic citation practices are illustrated also by “The discovery of HIV allowed for a rapid dissection of the viral replication cycle (Fig 13) (129)”, which led me to think that reference 129 would recount that “rapid dissection”. Instead, it is an article in press (as of 15 October, “Please cite this article in press as: Greene, W.C., et al., Novel targets for HIV therapy. Antiviral Res [2008], doi:10.1016/j.antiviral.2008.08.003”); and it is a review of the search for “Novel targets for HIV therapy”, brief summaries of talks presented at the 21st International Conference on Antiviral Research held in April 2008 in Montreal; such a search certainly being needed in view of “the emergence of drug resistance and various adverse effects associated with long-term use of antiretroviral therapy”. That review has a useful table of antiretroviral drugs and their date of approval. The earliest, AZT (zidovudine, ZDV, Retrovir), approved in 1987, owed nothing to an understanding of the viral replication cycle; the next two, ddI and ddC in 1991 and 1992, were designed — like other nucleoside/nucleotide reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs) — to work in the same manner as AZT. It’s not at all clear how the purported specific understanding of the viral replication cycle is supposed to have served to develop those drugs; but implying that certainly lends an impressive flourish to this just-so story of science at work.

That just-so story continues, “It rapidly became clear that the ability of HIV-1 to generate drug-resistant mutants meant that therapy would require a combination of agents affecting different proteins involved in viral replication (130, 131). . . . subsequent development was focused on the protease enzyme” [emphasis added]. Once again, “rapidly” makes the “science” appear more impressive than it was in practice, for it was a decade between AZT and the first protease inhibitors. The spurious claim is repeated, that “combination therapy . . . has dramatically increased the life expectancy of AIDS patients in developed countries”: as the death statistics plainly show, there has been no dramatic increase in the median age at which people die of “HIV disease” — “HAART saves lives — but doesn’t prolong them!?”, 17 September 2008; ”Virological response after starting HAART improved over calendar years, but such improvement has not translated into a decrease in mortality” (Antiretroviral Therapy [ART] Cohort Collaboration, Lancet 368 [2006] 451–58) — in other words, HAART decreases “viral load” but doesn’t prolong lives, so “HIV” is irrelevant to clinical progression.

In this connection, the Nobel citation is subtly misleading when it says, “successful antiretroviral therapy results in life expectancies for persons with HIV infection now reaching similar levels to those of uninfected people” — of course, “successful” therapy does so, but there is apparently a great deal of UNsuccessful therapy: the majority of adverse events under HAART are “non-AIDS” events, i.e. iatrogenic, the “side” effects of therapy, namely, liver or kidney or heart failure (Treatment Guidelines, 29 January 2008, p. 13) . So it’s rather horrifying that “Currently, 3 million people are being treated with anti-retroviral drugs”; if the USA data from 1996 to 2004 are any guide, then these 3 million will die at an average age in the middle forties.

The Nobel citation also treats as proven fact the notion that the CCR5d32 deletion is protective, though that notion proved to be an illusion — “Racial disparities in testing “HIV-positive”: Is there a non-racist explanation?”, 4 May 2008.
Finally, the citation skates rather too lightly over the failure to generate a vaccine: “attempts to develop a protective vaccine
have been severely compromised by our incomplete understanding of HIV-1 protective immunity” should more accurately read, “researchers haven’t a clue as to what might provide protective immunity”.

The Conclusions are no better than the main text. “The discovery . . . made it possible to perform molecular cloning of HIV-1” — without ever having isolated an authentic virion of HIV! The triumphalism is simply not warranted by the facts: “unravelling of important details of its replication cycle and how the virus interacts with its host” — which is still not understood. Diagnostic tools followed “quickly . . . which has limited the spread of the pandemic” — not according to the continuing alarms emanating from UNAIDS and WHO about Africa; “unprecedented development of several classes of new antiviral drugs” — the first of which, AZT, killed (conservatively) 150,000 people, while the later ones have not extended life-spans; “we have gained remarkable insight into this new pandemic” — but don’t understand how “HIV” causes death of CD4 cells nor what might provide immunity, and we administer drugs that don’t extend lives and cause death by organ failure.

Bah!

Humbug!

Every indication is that this was written carelessly, perhaps hurriedly, and without proper checking of the cited references. No matter why, it’s a shoddy piece.

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HAART and HIV/AIDS: Dilemmas, Paradoxes, and Errors

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2008/10/12

“The Sink and the Murder Scene: Rise and Fall of a Causal Model for AIDS Pathogenesis” by Vincenzo Crupi (Logic and Philosophy of Science V [#1, 2007] 9-32)  is a clear, concise, fully documented summary of what’s missing in our understanding of several aspects of “HIV” and of “AIDS”; and it illustrates, in my opinion, what’s very wrong with “HIV = AIDS” and “highly active antiretroviral treatment”.

From the very beginning, the central problem has been to understand how “HIV” kills the immune system. That it does so was assumed because of a correlation between CD4+ counts and disease progression (a correlation that has turned out to be anything but consistent) and an apparent preferential association of HIV with CD4+ cells. But — as Duesberg, for one, pointed out early on — a negligible proportion of CD4+ cells in AIDS patients is actually “HIV-infected”. Even in lymph tissue, which was suggested to be a “reservoir”, only about 1% of cells are “HIV-infected”.

To resolve this decade-long dilemma, Ho and Shaw invented a model in which the very low steady-state or average “infection” rate masked an enormously high rate of cell death and replenishment whereupon, after the average “latent” period of about 10 years, the immune-system was exhausted and could no longer replenish. Crupi shows, with citation as well as explication of sources, that this model is disproved by published observations and experiments. Among the salient points is that CD4+ counts in the blood can be misleading because these cells are redistributed as needed throughout various parts of the body (as mentioned previously on this blog in relation to Juliane Sacher’s work — “AIDS as Intestinal Dysbiosis”, 23 February 2008; “Alternative Treatments for AIDS”, 25 February 2008. Moreover, antiretroviral drugs may quickly reduce “viral load” without increasing the life-span of the cells supposedly killed by the virus, indicating that “HIV” is not the agent of cell death.

Because of these findings, mainstream speculation turns increasingly to the view that AIDS is characterized by “abnormal, chronic and up-regulated levels of immune system activation”, which may also occur in absence of HIV. Furthermore, clinical improvement can occur in AIDS patients on antiretroviral therapy even when “HIV” seems little affected. Crupi concludes that research is urgently needed on some of the matters that mainstream HIV/AIDS researchers have largely by-passed.

I strongly recommend this article. The facts about “HIV/AIDS” are at least equally well explained by regarding “HIV” as a sign of immune activation — or physiological stress, or specifically oxidative stress as the Perth Group has it — as by the apparently current mainstream view that “HIV” causes the immune activation that indirectly and eventually depletes the immune system.

I think it’s worth noting that HAART, “highly active antiretroviral treatment”, was designed on the basis of the Ho-Shaw model, which has been thoroughly disproved. It does not necessarily follow that HAART is ineffective, of course — it might by chance have some benefits, it would not be the first medical treatment to work despite misunderstanding or lack of understanding of why it works. As it turns out, though, death statistics  show that HAART doesn’t prolong lives to any significant extent. The discussion and citations in Crupi’s article serve to explain why that’s the case.

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HIV/AIDS in Italy — and “NEEDLE ZERO”

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2008/10/11

Professor Marco Ruggiero, University of Florence (Italy) kindly forwarded a copy of a PhD thesis presented on October 8. He tells me that it is now “freely available for consultation in the Library of the Department of Experimental Pathology and Oncology of the University of Firenze, Italy (www.patgen.eu)”; the citation is

Scarpelli S. “HIV infection and AIDS in Italy: results supporting the chemical hypothesis”.
PhD Thesis in Biological Sciences, Faculty of Mathematical, Physical and Natural Sciences, University of Firenze, Italy, October 8, 2008. (www.patgen.eu)

I can’t read Italian, but the thesis has an Abstract in English with some fascinating information:

There is no “Italian registry of HIV cases; there are no data concerning the number of new HIV infections in Italy”. The Ministry of Health does issue estimates, but “the lack of data does not allow to support the statement that there is (or that there has ever been) a HIV/AIDS epidemic in Italy; neither it allows to establish whether HIV is the cause of AIDS in Italy. This regrettable absence of surveillance is due, among other considerations, to the so called Privacy Law that, should AIDS be caused by HIV, evidently protects the individual’s right to privacy more than public health. Thus, if a laboratory finds out that an individual is HIV-positive, this information cannot be disclosed to anybody but the individual, who is then free to disregard the information and spread the virus. In fact, the Law states ‘L’identificazione del malato di HIV deve essere effettuata con modalità che non consentano l’identificazione della persona’ (art. 5, comma 2, l n. 135/1990), i.e. ‘identification of the HIV patient has to be performed with modalities that do not allow identification of the person’.”

I was struck particularly by the official recognition that HIV/AIDS is not a threat to public health. AIDS (not HIV infection) is classified “only as a third class [least dangerous or harmful] disease”, whereas influenza is in the first class and hepatitis (A, B, and C) are in the second.

Simone Scarpelli “tested the chemical hypothesis by analysing the data obtained by the rehabilitation centres for drug abuses (SerT, Servizi per le Tossicodipendenze). The data show that there is a good correlation between recreational drug abuse and AIDS cases in Italy.”

While the rate of heroin confiscation has not varied much, the pattern of consumption has changed from high usage by relatively few addicts to lower average use by a larger number of people who do not regard themselves as addicted and don’t seek treatment. The data are consistent with “a linear-quadratic model for heroin effects on the immune system and the development of AIDS” similar to that for “the biological effects of ionizing radiations and it could explain the bell-shaped curve of AIDS, the flat curve of heroin confiscation and the decreasing curve of heroin addiction in Italy. In fact, at high doses (such as in the eighties and the early nineties) the effects of heroin on the immune system are deterministic and drug addicts developed AIDS; at lower doses, however, the effects are stochastic i.e. there is only an increased probability of impairing the immune system and this might account for the decreasing AIDS incidence. According to this interpretation of the only available data for Italy, the AIDS epidemic paralleled the severe heroin abuse of the past. Nothing could be said about HIV since no data are available. This interpretation is also consistent with the recent meta-analyses that demonstrate the failure of anti-retroviral drugs in increasing survival of HIV-positive subjects (Lancet 2006; 368: 451-58), and with the statement that an AIDS vaccine could never exist (N. Engl. J. Med. 2007; 357: 2653-55).”

Scarpelli’s work supports Duesberg’s “drug-AIDS hypothesis”, for which massive evidence is collected in Duesberg, P., Koehnlein, C. and Rasnick, D., “The Chemical Bases of the Various AIDS Epidemics: Recreational Drugs, Anti-viral Chemotherapy and Malnutrition”, J. Biosci. 28 [2003] 383-412.

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In the early days of “AIDS”, a certain airline steward was identified as the “Patient Zero” whose profligate promiscuity supposedly seeded AIDS around the USA. That story is inconsistent with the current belief that illness follows infection only after an average interval of about 10 years, for the claimed victims of Patient Zero’s exploits became ill within months of their contact with him, that’s how they could be identified or traced — see Shilts, And the Band Played On: p. 130, “long latency period” of 10 and 13 months in two cases. I’m not aware that this inconsistency has been remarked on in mainstream discussions, any more than the myriad other facts inconsistent with HIV/AIDS theory. I mention Patient Zero because he exemplifies the mystery of the origin of the supposed HIV/AIDS epidemics — most particularly, perhaps, those epidemics supposedly spread primarily by the sharing of needles. How does such an epidemic get started, let alone continue to spread?

Recall the authoritative recent review that I described as a textbook instance of cognitive dissonance, “The spread, treatment, and prevention of HIV-1: evolution of a global pandemic”, by Myron S. Cohen, Nick Hellmann, Jay A. Levy, Kevin DeCock, and Joep Lange, Journal of Clinical Investigation, 118 [2008] 1244-54; doi:10.1172/JCI34706, whose authors are heavyweight mainstream HIV/AIDS gurus — Levy and  DeCock have been in this business from the beginning, though DeCock blotted his copybook somewhat by admitting that there had not been and never would be heterosexual epidemics outside Africa — “WHO Says That We’ve Been Very Wrong about HIV and AIDS? (Clue: WHO = World Health Organization)”, 10 June 2008.

According to that authoritative review, different regions of the globe see HIV spreading by dramatically different pathways:

Figure A

“The HIV-1 epidemic in Western Europe is diverse but was initially fueled by infections among MSM and injecting drug users, the latter especially in the southern part of the continent (3). Italy, Spain, Portugal, France, and the United Kingdom have been most heavily affected (3). Heterosexual transmission of HIV-1 in Europe has slowly increased, and many infections today are found among immigrants from sub-Saharan Africa (3). In Eastern Europe, where brisk and severe epidemics emerged among injecting drug users in the late 1990s, the most affected countries are the Russian Federation and Ukraine (3)” — (3) is UNAIDS, “AIDS epidemic update: December 2007”.

Now, the postulated “HIV” can’t survive for long outside bodily fluids, so the needle that supposedly transfers it must have been wetted and “infected” not much earlier. Try to construct a scenario in which that’s compatible with the regional situations in Figure A. Let’s say an infected male, Patient One — gay, bisexual, or heterosexual — enters Eastern Europe and infects a drug addict; whereupon the “virus” spreads like wildfire via the necessarily postulated orgies of needle sharing, but the infection doesn’t spread much to people who just have sex without sharing needles. What happened to Patient One? Did he leave the country again? Or did he become much less inclined to have sex, at least with people who are not needle-sharing addicts?

The absurdity is illustrated by several stories from Kyrgyzstan. “According to the CIA Fact Book, by 2003 there were in Kyrgyzstan an estimated 3900 people living with HIV/AIDS, there had been fewer than 200 HIV/AIDS deaths, and the prevalence was estimated at < 0.1% (as low as anywhere in the world)” — “SMART” Study Begets More Cognitive Dissonance, 11 June 2008. In that land where HIV is so rare, “’at least 26 people, mostly children, [were] infected in two local hospitals’. . . and medical personnel were fired” [HIV-Positive Children, HIV-Negative Mothers, 25 November 2007] because, obviously, these HIV-positive children of HIV-negative mothers could only have become HIV-positive via infected needles. How did those needles become infected in the first place? Of necessity, not long before the babies were supposedly stuck with them . . . . Were the babies all injected with the same dirty needle in rapid succession, or were there 26 different sources of infection, each of them contributing a dirty needle just in time for a baby to get stuck immediately thereafter?

See also “Babies Infect Mothers; Crazy Theory Ruins Lives”, 12 April 2008: Those babies were then apparently capable of infecting their mothers as they suckled — and this in Kyrgyzstan, which doesn’t have the vampire tradition of Transylvania — or, at least, there have so far been no reports of baby vampires in Kyrgyzstan, only a wild woman or perhaps a monkey  [Kyrgyzsylvania,  Thursday, June 19, 2008].
Of course, if it was a monkey, then the source of HIV in Kyrgyzstan becomes immediately obvious — it’s an African monkey of the ilk that first infected humans with HIV decades ago (supposedly in the knee of Africa, where there’s not nearly as much “HIV” as in southern Africa, where “HIV” is rampant — Deconstructing HIV/AIDS in “Sub-Saharan Africa” and “The Caribbean”, 21 April 2008 ).

Posted in HIV absurdities, HIV in children, HIV risk groups, HIV transmission, HIV/AIDS numbers, sexual transmission | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

NOBEL PRIZES for HIV and HPV

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2008/10/06

Prediction: This will be among the Nobel Prizes that the Nobel Committee will regret having awarded: for discovering a virus that has yet to be isolated, and for another that is claimed to cause a small percentage of cases of cervical cancer but is a boon for vaccine hawkers [CDC MONGERS FEAR AND HAWKS DEADLY VACCINE, 13 March 2008]. This news item failed to mention, though, that “efforts to develop a vaccine against the virus” have been unsuccessful despite more than two decades of efforts.

HIV skeptics will certainly agree with the Nobel Committee, however, that if HIV was discovered, it was in Montagnier’s lab and not in Gallo’s.

AIDS, cancer scientists scoop medicine Nobel — (CNN) — Two Frenchmen and a German won the 2008 Nobel Prize in medicine for their discoveries of viruses that cause HIV and cervical cancer, the organization’s Web site said Monday. Luc Montagnier will split the $1.4 million prize with two others. Francoise Barre-Sinoussi and Luc Montagnier of France were honored “for their discovery of human immunodeficiency virus.” The pair are recognized as the discoverers in 1983 of the virus that can expose people to AIDS. Both have been involved in breakthroughs in screening for HIV and efforts to develop a vaccine against the virus.

Harald zur Hausen of Germany was cited “for his discovery of human papilloma viruses causing cervical cancer” in women. The Nobel Laureates in medicine will receive their awards in Stockholm, Sweden on December 10. They will split the the $1.4 million prize.

The awards’ Swedish founder, dynamite inventor Alfred Nobel, created the prizes in the categories of medicine, physics, chemistry, literature and peace. Another award is made for economics. The prizes include the money and an invitation to the prize ceremonies in Stockholm and Oslo on December 10, the anniversary of Nobel’s death in 1896. The winner of most of prestigious of the awards, the Peace prize is expected to be announced on Friday. Last year former U.S. Vice President Al Gore shared the honor with the United Nations for raising climate change awareness. ‘

Posted in experts, HIV absurdities, HIV skepticism, HIV tests, vaccines | Tagged: , , , , | 57 Comments »

“AIDS” deaths: owing to antiretroviral drugs or to lack of antiretroviral treatment?

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2008/10/02

HIV/AIDS vigilantes have accused HIV Skeptics and AIDS Rethinkers of contributing to the death toll by influencing some people to resist antiretroviral treatment. The enumeration of names of people who refused antiretroviral treatment and died is among the unsavory tactics of the vigilantes at “AIDSTruth” (see, for example, “Questioning HIV/AIDS: Morally Reprehensible or Scientifically Warranted?”, Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons, 12 [#4, Winter 2007] 116-120).

The “AIDSTruth” list of people who died lacks necessary information about the health risks that had affected the named individuals. Yet the death of any given  “HIV-positive” person who was not taking antiretroviral drugs might have resulted from any one of a large number of possible causes. Some of those on the list had taken AIDS medications for many years before quitting because of adverse effects, or because of a change of perspective; others had a history of compromised health caused by long-term drug or alcohol addiction, or health challenges not related to AIDS.

A direct response to the AIDSTruthers’ exploitation of people’s deaths is the appended list of high-profile AIDS activists, treatment advocates, and celebrities who followed doctors’ orders to consume AIDS drugs and died anyway — often in the prime of their lives — from the very AIDS illnesses they believed the drugs would prevent, or from heart attacks, organ failures, cancers, or other conditions characteristic of chronic exposure to toxic anti-HIV chemicals. Notice that some of these deaths of AIDS activists are attributed to “AIDS-related conditions” or “AIDS complications” — terms that fail to disclose whether the death resulted from a heart attack, a stroke, diabetes, lactic acidosis, cancer, liver failure, or some other adverse effect of AIDS drugs. As I’ve pointed out on several earlier occasions, the official Treatment Guidelines acknowledge that such “side” effects of HAART are responsible for more mortality than the “disease” supposedly being treated:
“In the era of combination antiretroviral therapy, . . . the risk of several non-AIDS-defining conditions, including cardiovascular diseases, liver-related events, renal disease, and certain non-AIDS malignancies [97-102] is greater than the risk for AIDS in persons with CD4 T-cell counts >200 cells/mm3; the risk for these events increases progressively as the CD4 T-cell count decreases from 350 to 200 cells/mm3” (p. 13, 28 January 2008 version).

Despite this acknowledgment, the numbers of “AIDS” or “HIV disease” deaths reported each year in the US are actually the numbers of people who tested “HIV antibody positive” or were living with an official AIDS diagnosis when they died of any cause at all, be it an accident, a homicide or suicide, or a non-AIDS illness like diabetes that may be a “side” effect of antiretroviral drugs [Walensky et al., cited in HIV/AIDS SCAM: Have antiretroviral drugs saved 3 million life-years?, 6 July 2008 ].

A recent post [HAART saves lives— but doesn’t prolong them!?, 17 September 2008]  noted that the dramatic drop in deaths between 1996 and 1997, by about half, had not been accompanied by any dramatic increase in the median age at which HIV-positive people were dying: that median age had been increasing at about the same rate — ~0.4 years per year — since 1982. A nitpicker might point out that the rate was only ~0.3 years per year up to 1993 and about twice that thereafter — predictably, because since 1993 the definition of “AIDS” had included people with low CD4 counts but who are asymptomatic — i.e., people who are not ill —, a definition not adopted in such other regions as Australia,  Britain, Canada, or Europe. “Side” effects of antiretroviral drugs would naturally take longer to kill people who had been initially healthy than those who had presented with some sort of illness at diagnosis.

Eleven of the people named below died before the HAART era, and 26 died after the introduction of HAART in 1996.

AZT medication from 1987 to 1996 can be blamed for at least 150,000 deaths [HAART saves lives— but doesn’t prolong them!?]: the immediate 50% decline in deaths from 1996 to 1997 seems the direct result of desisting from the administration of high doses of AZT. But HAART typically includes appreciable amounts of AZT or a similar drug, so HAART remains toxic, even if somewhat less so than pure high-dose AZT.

The latest published claims for HAART include that life expectancy for 20-year-old HIV-positives had increased by 13 years between 1996 and 2005 to an additional 49 years, and for 35-year-olds the life expectancy in 1996-99 was said to be another 25 years (Antiretroviral Therapy Collaboration, Lancet 372 [2008] 293-99). But the death statistics show that the median age of death from “HIV disease” was still only 45 in 2004 [HAART saves lives— but doesn’t prolong them!?]; and, indeed, the 26 people listed below who died after 1996 averaged 44 years of age at death. The activists’ refrain that AIDS is now a chronic, manageable condition is contradicted by the facts — at least for those “HIV-positive” people who accept antiretroviral treatment.

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Researching and preparing this post has been no pleasant task. Death comes to all of us sooner or later, and most of us summon sympathy and empathy over any human death. Not many people are willing to use deaths of named individuals as talking points in an argument, as the AIDSTruthers do. Unfortunately, the only answer that might be heard by these vigilantes is to cite deaths that directly contradict their claim, for the AIDSTruthers have explicitly refused to engage in reasoned, evidence-based discussion, and they have shown themselves impervious to more general argument. So, while regretting the need to do so, we present these data to correct the one-sided story put forth by the AIDSTruth vigilantes.

We even understand — apparently, unlike the AIDSTruth Team — that anecdotes or lists cannot serve to establish reliable generalizations. Nevertheless, because these prominent AIDS “activists” and proponents of HAART were as well placed as anyone could be, to know about and to receive the very best antiretroviral treatment, their premature deaths do seem probative of the claims made for HAART. Moreover, their average age of death is consistent with the statistical data from death certificates reported by the Center for Health Statistics [Table 2 in HAART saves lives— but doesn’t prolong them!?].

Deceased AIDS Activists, Treatment Advocates and Celebrities
who died owing to or despite taking AIDS medications

(This information is from various published obituaries;
some are quoted direct, others have been shortened or copy-edited)

I — Pre-HAART

Hollywood Icon Rock Hudson Dies of AIDS
On 2 October 1985, actor Rock Hudson, 59, became the first major U.S. celebrity to die of AIDS. Hudson’s death raised public awareness of the epidemic, which until that time had been ignored by many in the mainstream as a “gay plague”. It’s of interest that Hudson’s partner, Marc Christian,  with whom he lived and from whom he withheld the serious nature of his condition, never tested HIV positive as a result of their unprotected, intimate contact.

Liberace Dies at 67 from AIDS
On 4 February 1987, Walter Valentino Liberace, world-renowned pianist and entertainer, died after falling into a coma. The official cause of death was complications of AIDS, though those close to him refused to acknowledge that he ever had AIDS.

Barry Gingell, Medical Director of Gay Men’s Health Crisis, Dies at 34
Dr. Barry Gingell, 34, who became medical director of the Gay Men’s Health Crisis organization in New York and a noted advocate for improved treatment of AIDS patients, died of AIDS on 28 May 1989 at a hospital in New York City.

Keith Haring, Artist/Cartoonist, Dies of AIDS at 31
When artist Keith Haring died on 16 February 1990 of AIDS, he left behind an astonishing artistic legacy. In his 31 years, Haring had gone from being an anonymous graffiti artist who drew chalk figures on New York City subway posters, to being called the successor to Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein.

Ryan White Dies of AIDS at 18; His Struggle Helped Pierce Myths
9 April 1990 — Ryan White, the Indiana teenager who put the face of a child on AIDS and served as a leader for gaining greater understanding and compassion for those with the deadly disease, died today at age 18, in Riley Hospital for Children, owing to complications of AIDS. Ryan, a hemophiliac who contracted the virus through a blood transfusion, had entered the hospital on March 29 suffering from a respiratory infection. His death continues to be used to raise “awareness” and funding for AIDS.
White had been taking AIDS-treatment drugs. Other sources attribute his death to internal bleeding as a result of hemophilia.

Rock Singer Freddie Mercury Dies at 45
24 November 1991 — Freddie Mercury, lead singer of the rock band Queen, died of AIDS-related pneumonia on Sunday at age 45. A day before his death, Mercury released a statement indicating that he had the disease: “I felt it correct to keep this information private to date in order to protect the privacy of those around me.” He added that he wanted everyone to join him and his doctors to combat AIDS.
As with Rock Hudson, Mercury’s long-term partner never tested HIV positive.

Kimberly Bergalis, AZT Victim
After testing HIV positive, Bergalis was treated with AZT at the University of Miami. Suddenly she started a precipitous decline in health. In an angry letter, she partly ascribed her symptoms to the toxic drug: “I have lived through the torturous ache that infested my face and neck, brought on by AZT. I have endured trips twice a week to Miami for three months only to receive painful IV injections. I’ve had blood transfusions. I’ve had a bone marrow biopsy. I cried my heart out from the pain”. This was only the beginning. The yeast infection that led to her AIDS diagnosis worsened after AZT treatment and became uncontrollable; she lost more than thirty pounds, her hair gradually fell out, her blood cells died and had to be replaced with transfusions, and her muscles wasted away. Her fevers hit highs of 103 degrees, and by late 1990 her T-cell count had dropped from an average of 1,000 to a mere 43. She looked just like a chemotherapy patient — which she now was. She developed AIDS just two years after testing HIV positive, and died shortly thereafter (on 8 December 1991).

AIDS Activist, Artist Alison (‘Ali’) Gertz, 26, Dies
8 August 1992 — Alison Gertz, who was exposed to the AIDS virus during her first sexual experience at age 16, died Saturday at her parents’ home in Westhampton Beach, N.Y. Gertz went public with her disease, giving lectures, founding an AIDS-awareness group called Love Heals, and allowing the airing of a television movie based on her life. To keep her functioning normally, Ms. Gertz each day took AZT, Ganciclovir, and Bactrim.

Arthur Ashe: The Gentle Warrior, 1943-1993
6 February 1993 — Ashe was ranked the number-one tennis-player in the world in 1968. He contracted the AIDS virus from an unscreened blood transfusion during his second open-heart surgery in 1983. Later he organized the Arthur Ashe Foundation for the Defeat of AIDS. Arthur Ashe died at age 49 in New York Hospital as a result of AIDS-related pneumonia.
In his book, Black Lies, White Lies, journalist Tony Brown — a close friend of Ashe’s — reveals that in the last months of his life, Ashe concluded that the AZT therapy he took in response to testing HIV positive was at the root of his descent into illness.

Bruce Voeller, NGLTF Founder, Loses Battle with AIDS
13 February 1994 — In the 1970s, Bruce Voeller founded the National Gay Task Force (NGTF), which in 1986 changed its name to the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force (NGLTF). It was Voeller who had suggested the name AIDS, “Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome”, instead of GRID, “Gay-Related Immune Deficiency”, which he considered both stigmatizing and inaccurate. Voeller lost his own battle with the disease and died at his Topanga, CA, home, assisted by his life partner, Richard Lucik.

MTV Star Pedro Zamora Dies at 22
11 November 1994 — AIDS activist Pedro Zamora died of AIDS at age 22. Zamora said he became infected with HIV through unprotected sex when he was 17. He testified at a congressional hearing, appeared in a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention television commercial about AIDS, and was featured on MTV’s “The Real World”.

Elizabeth Glaser Dies at 47; Crusader for Pediatric AIDS
4 December 1994 — Elizabeth Glaser, who waged a tireless campaign to draw attention to pediatric AIDS, died yesterday at her home in Santa Monica, CA. She was 47. The cause was complications from AIDS, said Josh Baran, a spokesman for the family. Mrs. Glaser, the wife of Paul Michael Glaser, a director and actor who starred in the “Starsky and Hutch” television series, was one of several public figures to bring AIDS to the forefront of the 1992 Presidential campaign. She had contracted the virus through a blood transfusion in 1981. Thousands of delegates, dignitaries, and guests stood frozen in place at the Democratic National Convention in New York City as she told of the death of her 7-year-old daughter, Ariel, in 1988 from AIDS.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Glaser’s autobiography, In the Absence of Angels, reveals that prior to starting the AIDS drug treatment that she had delayed for many years, her T-cell count was in normal ranges and she was enjoying normal health.

II — During the HAART period

ACT UP DC Founder Steve Michael Dies at 42
Steve Michael, founder of ACT UP of Washington, DC, died of AIDS complications on 25 May 1998. Michael’s partner of seven years, Wayne Turner, gave the order to disconnect Michael from life support after his condition severely worsened. Michael had spent almost four weeks in the intensive care unit at Washington Hospital Center for treatment of AIDS-related pneumonia. He was 42 years old.

AIDS Activist Simon Nkoli Dies
30 November 1998 — Nkoli died on the eve of World Aids Day, and in news articles was described as “only 41 years young”. Nkoli was the first South African to declare openly that he had AIDS.

Singing Star Ofra Haza Dies at 42 of AIDS Complications
Ofra Haza, popular Israeli singer, died on 23 February 2000 at the age of 42. Although initial reports suggested that Haza was only suffering from pneumonia or an extended bout with the flu, The Jerusalem Post reports that she suffered from liver and kidney failure.

Kiyoshi Kuromiya, Leading HIV/AIDS Activist, Dies
Kiyoshi Kuromiya, one of the world’s leading AIDS activists, died on the night of 10 May 2000, owing to complications from AIDS. To the last, Kiyoshi remained an activist, insisting on and receiving the most aggressive treatment for cancer and the HIV that complicated its treatment. He participated fully in every treatment decision, making sure that he, his friends and fellow activists were involved with his treatment every step of the way.

Stephen Gendin, Activist and Writer, Dies of AIDS at 34
Stephen Gendin, who was at the center of AIDS activism for fifteen years and whose provocative writing in POZ magazine as a gay man struggling with HIV sparked community controversies, died on 19 July 2000 at New York City’s Roosevelt Hospital. He was 34. Gendin’s death was caused by cardiac arrest while undergoing chemotherapy for AIDS-related lymphoma.

Nkosi Johnson, Young AIDS Activist, Dies at Age 12
1 June 2001, South Africa — Nkosi Johnson, a boy who was born with HIV and became an outspoken champion of others infected with the AIDS virus, died Friday of the disease he battled for all of his 12 years. Nkosi had collapsed in December with brain damage and viral infections. His foster mother, Gail Johnson, said he died peacefully in his sleep. Nkosi is featured in the documentary film, Questioning AIDS in South Africa.

Frances ‘Dace’ Stone, AIDS Activist, Dies at 48
20 August 2001 — Longtime AIDS activist Frances “Dace” Stone, 48, died of undisclosed causes last Wednesday in Washington, DC. Stone had been involved with the Whitman-Walker Clinic for nearly 20 years as a volunteer, board member, and former president of the board of directors.

Gay Columnist Lance Loud Dies of AIDS
Lance Loud, the openly gay columnist probably best known for his role in An American Family and as a columnist for various magazines, including The Advocate, Details, Interview, and Creem, died at age 50. Lance entered a hospice suffering from AIDS and died on 22 December 2001.

AIDS Activist Belynda Dunn Dies
13 March 2002 — HIV-positive activist Belynda Dunn, whose crusade for a new liver pitted her against a big insurer and won the support of Boston’s mayor, died yesterday in a Pittsburgh hospital, four days after she received the second of two liver transplants. She was 51. Doctors at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center believe a blood clot clogged her lungs.

Project Inform Board Member Linda Grinberg Dies
27 May 2002 — One of AIDS activism’s greats, Linda Grinberg, died on Memorial Day of a heart attack, the result of AIDS-related pulmonary hypertension. She had just turned 51. Grinberg served on the board of treatment-advocacy-group Project Inform.

Barbara Garrison, AIDS Activist, Dead at 45 from AIDS Complications

28 May 2002 — Barbara Garrison, an AIDS activist and former blood technician, died from complications of AIDS at Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo. She was 45. She had been diagnosed as HIV-positive in December 1995 and became involved with the Michigan Persons Living with AIDS Task Force, and at the time of her death headed the group’s membership and management committee.

AIDS Activist Javier Contreras Dies at 33
March 2003 — Javier Contreras, a Chicago AIDS activist, died of AIDS complications at age 33. He had worked at a counselor and case manager and was also a member of the HIV Prevention Planning Group of Chicago.

AIDS Activist Evan Ruderman Dies at 44

Evan Ruderman, an AIDS activist, died on 18 November 2003 from complications of AIDS. She was 44. Ruderman helped create the Foundation for Integrated AIDS Research and worked to obtain equal access to treatment for HIV patients around the world.

AIDS Activist Carlton Hogan Dead at 42
Carlton H. Hogan, age 42, of Minneapolis, died at home on 18 November 2003 after a long fight with AIDS. He had worked for the Community Programs for Clinical Research on AIDS Statistical Center, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota.

ACT UP Legend Keith Cylar Dead at 45 of Heart Trouble
Keith Cylar, a 45-year-old ACT UP legend, died of heart trouble on 5 April 2004. Cylar and his partner, Charles King, founded the one-stop New York social-service-and-activist powerhouse, Housing Works.

Positively Aware’s Charles Clifton Dies at 45 of Heart Attack
Clifton died on 15 August 2004 of a heart attack at age 45. He was executive director  of Test Positive Aware Network and edited the influential publication Positively Aware.

Heart Attack Claims AIDS Activist Gigi Nicks
Gigi Nicks, the patient advocacy director at Chicago’s CORE Center, was well known for her pioneering activism on behalf of positive women and children. She died of a heart attack on 19 August 2004 at age 52.

Nelson Mandela Says AIDS Led to Death of His Son, Makgatho Mandela
Johannesburg, 6 January 2005 — Former South African president Nelson Mandela announced Thursday that his son, Makgatho Mandela, 54, had died that morning of an undisclosed illness related to AIDS. Makgatho had been receiving antiretroviral treatment for more than a year.

AIDS Activist, Speaker Debbie Runions Dies
Debbie Runions, a prominent AIDS activist and patient who called for governmental response to the spread of AIDS, died of AIDS-related complications on 16 October 2005 at age 55. Runions found out she was HIV positive in 1992 and spent the rest of her life promoting AIDS awareness and prevention.

Jerry ‘Grant’ Lewis, 19 December 1979 — 17 January 2006
Grant was born with hemophilia and at the age of 11 learned that he was infected with HIV. Grant was an experimental pediatric-HIV-drugs research patient at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda (MD) for 5 years, and he was the first adolescent in the world to introduce one of the new protease inhibitors into his body. Grant made several appearances on the Phil Donahue, Montel Williams, Jenny Jones, and Maury Povich shows, and along with Magic Johnson and Greg Louganis he was the subject of a feature story on an ESPN segment about sports and HIV. Grant died at age 26.

Jeff Getty, AIDS Activist, Passes Away
16 October 2006 — AIDS activist Jeff Getty passed away in California at age 49. Getty died of heart failure in Joshua Tree, CA, following a cancer treatment. He became famous after doctors at San Francisco General Hospital transplanted bone marrow from a baboon into him in 1995. The experiment was termed a failure, yet Getty regained his health and continued to offer himself as a guinea pig for several other experiments.

Pioneering Atlanta AIDS Activist John Granger Dies
John Granger, a local AIDS activist and community volunteer, died on 29 January 2007 at Tucker Nursing Center, of AIDS-related complications owing to multifocal leukoencephalopathy, according to Dr. Jesse Peel, his former partner of 10 years. Granger was 52.

Gay/AIDS Advocate Bob Hattoy Dies of Heart Attack
3 March 2007 — Bob Hattoy, 56, died in his sleep at his home in Sacramento, CA, apparently of a heart attack. The environmental-political-gay-AIDS activist became perhaps the most widely known openly gay member of the Clinton administration. He addressed the 1992 Democratic National Convention as a person living with AIDS. Hattoy was a long-term survivor of HIV.

John Campbell, Founder of People Living with HIV, Dead at 39
30 May 2007 — Britain lost a national hero yesterday when John Campbell succumbed to an HIV-related neurodegenerative disease. Campbell shot to prominence in the gay activist community when he and three peers founded the UK Coalition of People Living with HIV and AIDS in 1993. Campbell also founded Positive Nation, an HIV-focused magazine. A former male prostitute, Campbell was also a special government HIV advisor.

Brett Lykins, Celebrated AIDS Activist, Dies at 28

1 August 2007— To say that Brett Lykins was a familiar face would be an understatement. For nearly all his life, he was the young man at the head of the AIDS awareness movement in Georgia. He first made headlines in 1989 when he was in third grade, revealing to his Gwinnett County classmates during show-and-tell that he was HIV-positive. Brett took to his celebrity like a pro, leading marches and rallies and rubbing shoulders with big-name stars like Sir Elton John during the Atlanta AIDS Walk. On Wednesday night, at his mother’s home in Duluth, Brett Lykins finally succumbed to illness, surrounded by relatives and friends.

Presidential AIDS Advisor Dr. Scott Hitt Dies at 49
Dr. R. Scott Hitt, an AIDS specialist and the first openly gay person to head a presidential advisory board, died on 8 November 2007, at age 49, of colon cancer at his home in West Hollywood, according to John Duran, the city’s mayor and a longtime friend. Hitt was chairman of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV and AIDS during President Clinton’s administration in the 1990s.

Thomas Morgan, Journalist and Activist, Dies at 56
27 December 2007 — Thomas Morgan III, a former reporter and editor at the New York Times and a president of the National Association of Black Journalists, died on Monday in Southampton, MA, aged 56. The cause was complications of AIDS, his partner, Tom Ciano, said.

Dallas AIDS Activist Don Sneed Dies
Don Sneed, who will undoubtedly be remembered as the city’s most colorful and controversial AIDS activist ever, died on  4 January 2008, aged 54, after a brief hospitalization at the Veterans Hospital in Dallas. He reportedly was in a coma at the time of his death, which was owing apparently to an HIV-related illness.

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Saturday, 20 December 2008 at 9:18 pm

Another sad death of an HIV+ treatment advocate:

“Dan Dunable, longtime Atlanta AIDS activist and HIV treatment educator, died unexpectedly at home October 4th. He was 51.”
http://www.thebody.com/content/art38369.html

“The medical examiner says that Dan died from a stroke. . . . Dan’s T-cell count was good, he was adherent to his meds, he went to the doctor, and he exercised … so I don’t understand why he is dead. Did he die because of his HIV, because of the medications … or was it something else?”
http://www.thebody.com/content/art45171.html

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A correspondent alerted me to yet another sad death, at age 31, in this era of “life-saving HAART”; from the link sent me (http://kenyonfarrow.com/2009/03/03/rip-shelton-jackson/):

Shelton Jackson (1978 – 2009)…. passed away on Monday, March 2, 2009 at approximately 6:00 am. His death was due to complications due to AIDS. He was a patient at UMDNJ where he has been for the last month or so… AIDS has truly cut this young man down in the prime of his life. He was just 31-years-old, and has done as much activism as one person can do. Even to the end, he was working as a consultant for us for our upcoming social marketing project. Shelton Jackson will certainly be missed.

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