HIV/AIDS Skepticism

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

Archive for October, 2009

Premium Vaccines — Only for the Elite

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2009/10/19

Headline: Government officials receive a better tolerated vaccine than the general population

Complaint: Medicine for swine flu according to social class

The German Ministry of the Interior has confirmed a report in the news magazine, Der Spiegel, that 200,000 doses of swine-flu vaccine free of adjuvants have been ordered from Baxter International, for government officials. According to experts, the absence of adjuvants means fewer “side”-effects, albeit this vaccine has not been tested as much as the competing GlaxoSmithKline vaccine.
(Free translation from German source dated 18 October 2009)

An English story about this, dated 19 October, is on the Spiegel International site:
“Damage control is the name of the game in Berlin on Monday as politicians rush to deny that they are receiving a better, safer swine flu vaccine than ordinary Germans. . . . top government officials in Berlin will be injected with an alternative vaccine — one widely seen as safer . . . . Chancellor Angela Merkel, a number of her ministers and other government officials would receive a vaccine manufactured by the pharmaceutical company Baxter — the same vaccine that the German military opted for . . . . Baxter vaccine had been ordered for all ministries and other agencies as well as for the employees of the Paul Ehrlich Institute, the authority responsible for approving vaccines. . . . The Paul Ehrlich Institute has repeatedly defended its decision to provide the population with the GlaxoSmithKline version, known as Pandemrix. . . . The weekend scandal has drowned out a second debate which has been raging in recent weeks in the US and which has also found resonance here in Germany: whether such a massive vaccination program is necessary in the first place. Wolf-Dieter Ludwig, chairman of the Drug Commission of the German Medical Association, has called the planned vaccination campaign a “scandal.” “The health authorities have fallen for a campaign from the pharmaceutical companies, who simply want to earn money with an alleged threat,” he told SPIEGEL.”

Posted in experts, Legal aspects, vaccines | Tagged: , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

Compounding HIV/AIDS absurdities

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2009/10/11

HIV/AIDS theory and practice have covered much ground in nearly 3 decades, without reaching a coherent understanding of where “HIV” came from, how it destroys the immune system, or how the supposed benefits of antiretroviral drugs are achieved and how those purported benefits are supposed to outweigh the drugs’ toxicity.

Instead, a host of mutually contradictory tenets are held simultaneously. A recent instance to come to my attention concerns the ability of “elite controllers” to infect others despite an absence of “virus”:

“the viral loads of elite controllers range from a scant 50 down to levels so small that even the most sensitive tests can’t detect them. Doctors know these people have the virus only because separate tests have revealed the presence of antibodies to HIV in their systems. In other words, elite controllers aren’t HIV-free; they may still be able to pass the virus to others, to whom it may be deadly” (Charles Slack, “Researchers hope ‘elite’ group holds clues for others”, Washington Post, 7 July 2009, pp. E1, 4; a longer version is in PROTO Magazine, Winter 2009, pp. 22-7; PROTO is a quarterly biomedical magazine published by Massachusetts General Hospital ).

Thus the presence of antibodies has become, in the conventional wisdom, proof of the presence of virions, even when no virions are to be found.

That virions may be transmitted even in their absence also runs directly counter to another tenet of the conventional HIV/AIDS wisdom, namely, that the likelihood of transmitting “HIV” increases with the magnitude of the “viral load”, i.e. the purported number of virions:
“blood HIV load, which is higher during the postseroconversion period and during advanced disease, is the principal predictor of heterosexual transmission [5-8]” (Wawer et al., Journal of Infectious Diseases, 191 [2005] 1403-9).

Kissing was early declared not to be a risky behavior insofar as transmitting “HIV” was concerned, because of the (relative) absence of “HIV” in saliva. Nevertheless, transmission of “HIV” has been officially recognized as having occurred from mother to child through pre-chewing food [CHEW ON THIS, 7 February 2008] as well as from child to mother through biting [HIV: IT MUST HAVE BEEN TRANSMITTED BY BITE!, 24 April 2008].

Then there’s the universally accepted HIV/AIDS “fact” that “HIV” is responsible for the disappearance of CD4 cells, even as there is no correlation between amount of “HIV” — “viral load” — and the subsequent course of CD4 counts [Rodriguez et al., JAMA 296 (2006) 1498-1506].

There is also no explanation for how “HIV” might accomplish this disappearance of CD4 cells:
“It is not clear how much of the pathology of AIDS is directly due to the virus and how much is caused by the immune system itself. There are numerous models which have been suggested to explain how HIV causes immune deficiency: Direct Cell Killing . . .  Antigenic Diversity . . . . The Superantigen Theory . . . . T-cell Anergy . . . . Apotosis [sic] . . . . TH1-TH2 Switch . . . . Virus Load and Replication Kinetics . . . .” [MicrobiologyBytes: Virology: AIDS I — Updated 8 April 2009;  see also Henry et al., JAMA 296 (2006) 1523-5].

A currently faddish shibboleth is that “AIDS” results from “chronic immune activation”, a fine example of the sort of “explanation” that, in other circumstances, is laughed at for being a “hand-waving” evasion of specifics: Exactly what sort of “activation” is it that apparently can’t deal with the activating stimulus and instead accomplishes suicidal self-destruction? When the typical reaction of the immune system to a stimulus is the very opposite?

We are also treated continually to new discoveries of where and how “HIV” originated in humans, discoveries based on careful analysis of “HIV” genomes and their change over the decades and centuries — even as in other contexts it is emphasized that “HIV” mutates at so incredible a rate that
“Within a single . . . host, HIV-1 population represents a complex mixture, or swarm, of mutant virus variants . . . [whose] prevalence . . . is changing . . . on almost a daily basis (intrahost evolution). Moreover, infected individuals within a human population harbor distinct viruses (interhost or populationwide heterogeneity). Finally, the global HIV-1 pandemic is composed of many local epidemics, which generally differ in . . . virus genotypes in circulation (global variation)” [V. V. Lukashov, J. Goudsmit, & W. A. Paxton, “The genetic diversity of HIV-1 and its implications for vaccine development”, in AIDS Vaccine Research, ed. Flossie Wong-Staal and Robert C. Gallo. Chapter 3, 93-120, Marcel Dekker, 2002].
That’s why it’s so difficult to manufacture a vaccine: “This isn’t just one virus . . . . You’re talking about tens of thousands of different viruses” [Dennis Burton, immunologist at Scripps Research Institution, cited by Charles Slack, cited above].

So “HIV” is sufficiently stable that one can trace its ancestry over many decades, yet at the same time so unstable that one cannot manufacture a vaccine. Leave aside the extraordinary ability of this chameleon to mutate and mutate and mutate and remain deadly in each of its variants.

On the one hand, it’s extraordinarily rare that “HIV-positive” people don’t progress to AIDS and remain extraordinarily healthy; that’s why they are called “elite controllers”, a term that seems to have replaced the earlier “long-term non-progressors”. There are “no more than one in every 300 cases, or perhaps 5,000 of the more than 1 million infected Americans” (Slack, cited above).
On the other hand, about 1 million Americans have been “HIV-positive” in each year since the mid-1980s at least [specific sources for an estimate of 1 million for 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1993, 2003 are cited at pp. 1-2 & 108 in The Origin, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory]; and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continually urge universal testing because about one quarter (A) or perhaps one third (B) of all “HIV-positive” people don’t know that they are “HIV-positive”, in the United Kingdom (C) as well as in the United States.
[(A): “One of out of three people infected with HIV in the U.S. doesn’t know it, according to the CDC. Many of them are unknowingly spreading the disease to people they love” — Richard Sine, “Braving an HIV Test” (reviewed on 14 August 2006 by Charlotte Grayson Mathis, MD) ;
(B) MMWR 56 (2007) 1233-7;
(C) Michael Carter, “HIV testing in gay social venues is viewed as inappropriate”, 22 December 2007]

So ever since the mid-1980s there have been 250,000-333,000 “HIV-positive” Americans who didn’t know they were positive; and who therefore were also not known to the authorities to be positive. How many of those, one is allowed to wonder, are “elite controllers” who have never been tested and who have remained perfectly healthy, for as much as two decades or more?

Of course, the fact that the number of “HIV-positive” Americans has been steady at about 1 million throughout the AIDS era is in itself an obvious disproof of the notion of a spreading epidemic.

The latest estimate postulates an annual rate of about 55,000 new “HIV-positive” cases (Hall et al., JAMA 300 [2008] 520-9). There is no reason to imagine that the 1 million “HIV-positives” in 1985 generated fewer new cases than the 1 million “HIV-positives” in recent years, so 1 million have been augmented at an annual rate of 55,000 or so for more than two decades, without exceeding appreciably that steady total of about 1 million. That makes no sense.

Deaths from “AIDS” or “HIV disease” can’t be invoked as balancing out those extra 55,000 annually, because the officially reported numbers of deaths are much smaller, beginning with 430 in 1982, rising to 42,000 in 1994, and declining to 13,000-14,000 by 1996, remaining there ever since [Table 3 in HAART saves lives — but doesn’t prolong them!?, 17 September 2008].  Cumulatively through 2007, just over 583,000 “AIDS” deaths have been reported (Table 8 in HIV/AIDS Surveillance Report, 2007; vol. 19, 2009).
For more than 20 years, about 55,000 “HIV-positives” have been added to the initial 1 million, so by 2007 there should have been something like (1 + 0.055 x 20) million minus 583,000, in other words about 1.52 million living “HIV-positive” or with “AIDS”.
However, the CDC reports 264,000 “Living with HIV infection” and 469,000 “Living with AIDS” at the end of 2007 (Table 14 in cited report), a total of 733,000.
The difference between 1.52 million and 733,000, namely 787,000, represents plausibly the number of people who, at one time or another, were “HIV-positive” but have never been tested nor become ill from anything that would occasion an “HIV” test: in other words, “elite controllers”.
The number of elite controllers, then, is plausibly on the order of 800,000, comparable in magnitude to the number of those who have been diagnosed with “HIV” or “AIDS”. Half of all “HIV-positives” may well be “elite controllers”.

That last calculation illustrates not only how baseless is the asserted rarity of “long-term non-progression” or “elite controlling” but also that one can prove just about anything on the basis of official HIV/AIDS data.

Perhaps the most direct hard data on elite controllers and long-term non-progressors comes from the Armed Services, whose members are typically “HIV”-tested annually. TACC (Tri-Services AIDS Clinical Consortium) found 382 such individuals among 4574 who had been followed for up to 20 years, that is, 8.4% of all the “HIV-positives” [Okulicz J, Marconi V, Dolan M. 2008. “Characteristics of elite controllers, viremic controllers, and long-term nonprogressors in the US Military HIV cohort.” Keystone symposium on HIV pathogenesis, Banff (Alberta, Canada)].
This means that on average about 8% of “HIV-positive” people will derive only harmful “side”-effects and no benefit at all from antiretroviral treatment.


Scan the “HIV absurdities” category on this blog to relish further examples of the mutually contradicting, common-sense-insulting things that HIV/AIDS believers must stand firm on, like marriage as a risk factor for “HIV” but being a porn star as one of the surest ways to avoid “HIV”; more breast feeding producing less “transmission”; “HIV-disease” deaths not the same as “AIDS” deaths and mutually contradictory numbers from two different administrative units within CDC; prison as a hotbed of spreading “HIV” and yet no appreciable spread of “HIV” in prisons; black Americans both more affected by “HIV/AIDS” and yet surviving better; death rates from “HIV/AIDS” not varying much by age; and much, much more.

Okulicz J, Marconi V, Dolan M. Characteristics of elite controllers, viremic
controllers, and long-term nonprogressors in the US Military HIV cohort.
Keystone symposium HIV pathogenesis. Banff, Alberta, Canada; 2008.

Posted in HIV absurdities, HIV does not cause AIDS, HIV risk groups, HIV skepticism, HIV tests, HIV transmission, HIV/AIDS numbers, sexual transmission, uncritical media, vaccines | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 14 Comments »

How antiretroviral drugs are approved

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2009/10/09

* FDA document says Selzentry “well tolerated” (“Pfizer HIV drug seems safe for new use — FDA staff”; Susan Heavey, 6 October 2009)

“Through 48 weeks, fewer participants discontinued maraviroc [generic name of Selzentry] because of toxicity (4.2%” [in a comparison against efavirenz; NIH Treatment Guidelines, 3 November 2008, pp. 36-7].

In the world of HIV/AIDS,
a medication that brings toxic effects
within 48 weeks in more than 4% of patients
is said to be “well tolerated”.

Here’s the fuller context:

“Pfizer Inc’s . . . HIV drug Selzentry appears to be safe for wider use in certain patients with the disease who have not yet begun taking any medications, U.S. Food and Drug Administration staff said in a document released on Tuesday. The drug, also know by its generic name maraviroc, is already FDA-approved in combination with similar drugs for HIV patients who have tried other antiretroviral medications. Pfizer is seeking FDA permission to market Selzentry for HIV patients who have a certain variation of HIV-1 — one of two strains of the human immunodeficiency virus that causes AIDS — who have not yet tried any medications. It would be taken with other antiretroviral drugs. An FDA staff document said the drug appeared to be “well tolerated” in patients in a company-funded study [that in itself is cause for concern, of course]. A review of an FDA database also found no new reported safety concerns [apparently the 4.2% toxicity in less than a year is not a “NEW” safety concern] in HIV patients who have already been taking the drug. . . . The FDA released the document ahead of a public meeting on Thursday when the agency will ask its outside advisers for a recommendation on whether to approve the drug’s wider use. It usually follows their advice. [How can the conclusion “well tolerated” precede the advisory panel’s discussion?] Pfizer said its trial showed the drug is safe [to 95% of patients, provided they don’t take it for more than 48 weeks] and effective.”

NIH Treatment Guidelines, 3 November 2008, regarding Selzentry (generic is maraviroc, MVC)

Table 13 —
Hepatotoxicity (clinical hepatitis or asymptomatic serum transaminase elevation):
All NNRTIs; all PIs; most NRTIs; maraviroc

Appendix Table 6:
“Side” effects include — Abdominal pain, cough, dizziness, musculoskeletal symptoms, pyrexia, rash, upper respiratory tract infections, hepatotoxicity, orthostatic hypotension.

Pp. 36-7: Maraviroc-Based Regimen. The MERIT study compared the CCR5 antagonist maraviroc with efavirenz . . . . Only participants who had CCR5 virus and no evidence of resistance to any drugs used in the study were enrolled (n = 633). At 48 weeks, virologic suppression (defined as HIV RNA <400 copies/mL) was seen in 75.3% of maraviroc recipients and in 78.9% of efavirenz recipients, and HIV RNA <50 copies/mL was observed in 65.2% of maraviroc recipients and in 69.2% of efavirenz recipients. The HIV RNA <50 copies/mL results did not meet the criteria set by the investigators to demonstrate noninferiority for maraviroc in this study. CD4 counts increased by an average of 170 cells/mm3 in the maraviroc arm and by an average of 143 cells/mm3 in the efavirenz arm. Through 48 weeks, more participants discontinued maraviroc because of lack of efficacy (11.9% vs. 4.2%), whereas fewer participants discontinued maraviroc because of toxicity (4.2% vs. 13.6%).

Posted in antiretroviral drugs, clinical trials, experts, uncritical media | Tagged: , , , , , | 13 Comments »

HIV testing without specific informed consent

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2009/10/08

I didn’t know that
“Massachusetts is one of only eight states that still require separate written consent between patients and health care providers to authorize a HIV test. Unlike cholesterol counts or cancer screening, which fall under the ‘general consent’ form for all other blood tests, a doctor in Massachusetts cannot legally test for HIV without separate, specific written consent from a patient” [“Outdated laws block earlier detection, treatment of HIV”, by Patricia Jehlen and Calvin Cohen, 6 October 2009]

So in 42 states, the “informed” consent document we all have to sign when being admitted to hospital for anything at all, and which I suspect others sign without reading, as I do, exposes us to the clear and present danger of being “HIV”-tested.

“In 2006 the CDC recommended that HIV tests be made more common and routine, prompting 15 states to update their laws. . . . Studies by scientists at CDC and elsewhere have already shown that, when the hurdle of additional written consent for HIV testing is removed, more cases are identified earlier”.
Yes, of course. More testing –> more positive tests.

“Senate Bill 821, which was introduced earlier this year and comes up for a hearing on Beacon Hill today, will fully implement the CDC’s recommendation on HIV/AIDS testing and remove the outdated barriers that have discouraged patients from accessing the full host of health benefits available to them. The bill maintains the strong existing privacy protections around the disclosure of an individual’s health status. Anyone who tests positive for HIV would be guaranteed access to post-test counseling, as well as referrals to support services” [emphasis added].
That’s exactly what is to be feared, that “full host of health benefits”. See what Karri Stokely has to say about that from personal experience; or Audrey Serrano.

“The bill will not lead to people being tested against their will or without their knowledge, as a patient’s general consent for medical care is still required to conduct an HIV test.”
Has anyone tried to get the care they actually need in a hospital in the United States — colonoscopy, hernia operation, whatever —  WITHOUT signing such a form?

“Patricia Jehlen, lead sponsor of Senate Bill 821, represents the Second Middlesex District in the Massachusetts Senate. Dr. Calvin Cohen is clinical research director at the Community Research Initiative of New England and Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates.”

It’s always nice to get opinions and proposed legislation from people who know what they’re talking about and have no conflicts of interest.

Posted in experts, HIV risk groups, HIV skepticism, HIV tests, Legal aspects, uncritical media | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Why pregnant women tend to test “HIV-positive”

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2009/10/05

Sabine Kalitzkus drew to my attention this plausible explanation for the tendency of pregnant women to test “HIV-positive”:
1. Pregnancy brings a Th1→Th2 shift in the immune system.
2. “HIV-positive” is associated with a Th1→Th2 shift.


It is vital to bear in mind — always, not only in this connection! — that testing “HIV-positive” does not signify the presence of a specific agent, still less the presence of an human immunodeficiency virus. There are several lines of proof for that:
First: a great variety of conditions can bring about an “HIV-positive” test-result. For empirical proof, see Christine Johnson, “Factors known to cause false positive HIV antibody test results”, Continuum 4 #3, Sept/Oct 1996, or; or The Origin, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory; or a large number of posts on this blog in the category “HIV tests”. (Quite recently, a correspondent told me of testing “HIV-positive” after having abused steroids, which I have not seen mentioned elsewhere as inducing “HIV-positive”. After changing his lifestyle, he now tests negative again. Was Magic Johnson perhaps one of the many athletes who [ab]used steroids?)
Second: For a priori proof, note that the ELISA and Western Blot tests respond to many combinations and magnitudes of 2 or more among 10 separate proteins, none of which has been proven to be unique to the hypothesized “HIV” — virions of which have never been isolated directly from “HIV-positive” people or from AIDS patients, even though the latter are postulated to experience overwhelming viremia in the later stages of their illnesses [HIV tests: Danger to life and liberty, 16 November 2007].
Third: Again empirical and entirely consistent with and illustrative of the first two: Surveys of “HIV” “prevalence” show a continuum of rates of “HIV-positive” test-results among different groups. The progression from low to high rates appears to correlate with the likelihood that some sort of health challenge is present. Note in particular that pregnant women (pre-natal clinics) test positive at a higher rate than the general average of the population (National Health and Nutrition Survey), and quite significantly more often than women at family planning clinics:


Not only do surveys of “HIV” prevalence find it higher among pregnant women, a full-scale prospective clinical trial in Africa actually found a higher incidence of “HIV-positive” during pregnancy [Gray et al., “Increased risk of incident HIV during pregnancy in Rakai, Uganda: a prospective study”, Lancet 366 (2005) 1182-8].


Among the variety of circumstances that can stimulate an “HIV-positive” response is “AIDS”, and in AIDS, “A gradual shift from Th1- to Th2-dominance is observed. . . . This Th1-to-Th2 shift perfectly explains some of the major conundrums of the AIDS clinical syndrome. . . . Furthermore, elevated levels of antibodies, including autoantibodies, are characteristic of all AIDS patients — a finding consistent with a decrease in the Th1 subset coincident with an increase in the Th2 subset. . . . HIV is expressed primarily in Th0 and Th2 cells, and is scarcely to be found in the Th1 subset. 38-40 This is curious indeed, since it is the Th1 cells that decline, whereas the cells in which HIV prefers to reside do not decrease” [Culshaw, “Mathematical Modeling of AIDS Progression: Limitations, Expectations, and Future Directions”, Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons 11 (#4, Winter 2006) 101-5].

Notoriously, gay men are more likely than others to suffer an “AIDS” condition, and — independently — they are more likely to test “HIV-positive” without necessarily becoming ill: many “HIV-positive” gay men have remained healthy for upwards of two decades. As Tony Lance has pointed out, much evidence indicates that gut dysbiosis can induce gut leakage, testing “HIV-positive”, and in severe cases the most characteristic of the AIDS illnesses, namely, the fungal infections Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia and candidiasis; and gut dysbiosis is also associated with a shift in the Th1-Th2 balance:
“T-cell abnormalities — There appears to be a connection to be elucidated between gut dysbiosis, glutathione deficiency, and T-cell anomalies thought to be characteristic of HIV/AIDS. . . . A direct connection between the composition of gut microflora and the balance of Th-type cells has been reported by several authors: . . . ‘What typically happens in a person with gut dysbiosis is that two major arms of their immune system, Th1 and Th2, get out of balance with underactive Th1 and overactive Th2. . . ’ (35)” [emphases added; Tony Lance, “GRID = Gay Related Intestinal Dysbiosis?
Explaining HIV/AIDS Paradoxes in Terms of Intestinal Dysbiosis”, pdf at “What really caused AIDS: Slicing through the Gordian Knot”, 20 February 2008].

Testing “HIV-positive”, then, correlates with a Th1→Th2 shift, under some circumstances at least.
The immune system is of course much more complicated than just these two categories of cells. There are a variety of Th1 cells and of Th2 cells, so a shift in the overall balance might mask more specific differences; in other words, a given Th1/Th2 ratio in healthy gay men may bespeak functionally different circumstances than the same numerical ratio in AIDS patients, or in TB patients, or in pregnant women. The mere fact of a Th1→Th2 shift does not necessarily signify a dangerous health condition, any more than an “HIV-positive” test necessarily signifies a dangerous health condition or that an “HIV-positive” test always signifies the presence of the same combination of two or more of those ten proteins.

So: the fact that pregnant women are more likely to test “HIV-positive” does not necessarily signify a health challenge more serious than normal pregnancy.
As to a Th1→Th2 shift in pregnancy, Sabine Kalitzkus sent a link to impfreport, Zeitschrift für unabhängige Impfaufklärung, 56/57, July/August 2009 [vaccination report, magazine for independent vaccination education; editor, Hans U. P. Tolzin]. Pages 4-5 report information for doctors and pharmacists that was issued by the Paul Ehrlich Institute on 4 September 2009. What follows is free translation from German:


Vaccinating pregnant women during the swine-flu pandemic
The immune system has broadly speaking two arms. Cellular immunity is mediated largely by Th1 “killer” cells which attack “foreign” cells, i.e. those not recognized by their protein coating as belonging to the host. The other arm is mediated by Th2 cells which are responsible for generating antibodies to foreign proteins.
A fetus is at least partly “foreign” to the mother since its genes, and consequently the generated proteins, come partly from the father. To prevent aborting of the fetus, pregnancy causes a partial Th1→Th2 switch. [In other words, such a shift is perfectly normal in healthy pregnancies, but it will also tend to be associated with an “HIV-positive” test]
The [European] swine-flu vaccine contains adjuvants to stimulate the Th1 arm, which may increase the risk of spontaneous abortion. Indeed, it is known that spontaneous abortion is associated with a shift towards Th1.
The Paul Ehrlich Institute’s release minimizes this risk in bureaucratic weasel-word fashion:
Altogether, a harmful effect on pregnancy of adjuvant-containing vaccines seems rather unlikely. But since data from clinical trials are lacking, such an effect is not impossible.
[Insgesamt erscheint ein negativer Effekt von squalenhaltigen Influenzaimpfstoffen auf die Schwangerschaft eher unwahrscheinlich. Da jedoch umfangreiche Daten bei Schwangeren in klinischen Studien fehlen, kann ein Effekt auch nicht vollständig ausgeschlossen werden.]


To paraphrase this “conclusion”: We have no relevant data, hence no evidence. What we know about the immune system and pregnancy would incline one to be concerned. However, in our opinion the risk is negligible, though we can offer no evidentiary basis for that judgment.

That evidence is totally lacking for this Micawber-ish, Panglossian or Pollyanna-ish failure to be concerned is obvious, since pregnant women are (at least in developed countries) not eligible for enrolment in clinical trials — except, of course, in the case of HIV/AIDS and the attempt to find out how high a dose of antiretroviral drugs can be tolerated by “HIV-positive” pregnant women [Celia Farber, “Out of control: AIDS and the corruption of medical science”, HARPER’S MAGAZINE, March 2006, 37-52].

To recapitulate:
Empirical fact: Pregnant women test “HIV-positive” more frequently than others.
Empirical fact: In several groups, Th1→Th2 shift is associated with a tendency to test “HIV-positive”.
Empirical fact: Normal, healthy pregnancy induces a Th1→Th2 shift.

The higher frequency of “HIV-positive” tests among pregnant women
may be nothing more than a natural consequence of pregnancy

Posted in HIV as stress, HIV risk groups, HIV tests, vaccines | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 39 Comments »