HIV/AIDS Skepticism

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

Intestinal Dysbiosis theory confirmed

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2010/11/05

The thread on Questioning AIDS mentioned in the previous post is not only about oxidative stress and that HAART adds more such damage, it refers also to a number of articles that lend considerable support to Tony Lance’s hypothesis of intestinal dysbiosis:  damage to the intestinal microflora destroys safeguards — in particular against fungal infections — and allows leakage of certain substances from gut to blood which in turn leads to testing “HIV-positive”.
Mainstream work seems increasingly to be edging toward accepting this view. For example:
“the gastrointestinal tract plays a critical role in the pathogenesis of acute HIV-1 . . . infections”
— Mehandru et al., Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, 116 (2005) 419-22.
“The gastrointestinal pathology associated with HIV infection comprises significant enteropathy with increased levels of inflammation and decreased levels of mucosal repair and regeneration”
— Brenchley & Douek, Mucosal Immunology, 1 (2008) 23-30
“Why and how HIV makes people sick is highly debated. Recent evidence implicates heightened immune activation due to breakdown of the gastrointestinal barrier as a determining factor of lentiviral pathogenesis. . . . Translocation of microbial products from the gut, in turn, correlates with increased immune activation in chronic HIV infection and may further damage the immune system . . . . Maintaining a healthy GALT [gut-associated lymphoid tissue] may be the key to reducing the pathogenic potential of HIV”
— Hofer & Speck, Seminars in Immunopathology, 31 (2009) 257-66.
“Reducing the pathogenic potential of HIV” by maintaining a healthy GALT is quite like Montagnier’s assertion, captured in the House of Numbers film,     that a healthy immune system can stave off damage from “HIV” (some discussion here). In practical terms — no theorizing about causes — these mainstream statements mean and recommend  precisely the same as Lance does:
You have more chance of staying healthy, whether you are “HIV-positive” or “HIV”-negative, if you don’t do anything to harm your beneficial gut microflora. Be sensible in terms of lifestyle. Pay special attention to diet, and by all means use probiotics.

*                    *                    *                    *                    *                    *                    *                    *

The mainstream has been unable to identify specific mechanisms by which “HIV” is supposed to kill off the immune system. The currently favored idea seems to be that “HIV” somehow brings about chronic systemic immune activation:
“the increased CD4+ and CD8+ cell death and proliferation is a consequence of virus-induced immune activation, not virus-mediated killing”
— Douek, PRN Notebook, 10(#3) (2005) 9-12.
“Chronic activation of the immune system is a hallmark of progressive HIV infection and better predicts disease outcome than plasma viral load” [emphasis added]
— Brenchley et al., Nature Medicine, 12 (2006) 1365-71
“HIV infection is characterized by chronic immune system activation” (review article)
— Nixon & Landay, Current Opinion in HIV and AIDS, 5 (2010) 498-503.

But how does “HIV” produce that condition?
“circulating microbial products, probably derived from the gastrointestinal tract, are a cause of HIV-related systemic immune activation. . . . These data establish a mechanism for chronic immune activation in the context of a compromised gastrointestinal mucosal surface”
— Brenchley et al., Nature Medicine, 12 (2006) 1365-71
“Microbial translocation has been linked to systemic immune activation during human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) type 1 infection. Here, we show that an elevated level of microbial translocation . . . correlates with AIDS”
— Nowroozalizadeh et al., Journal of Infectious Diseases, 201 (2010) 1150-4.
So, again, precisely the Lance hypothesis: Damage to the gut’s protective functioning allows leakage into the blood of substances not normally there, producing chronic activation so long as the leakage persists. Eventually serious illness can result.

The salient difference between the Lance theory and the mainstream belief is this:
— If Lance is right, then damage to the gut microflora precedes whatever markers may be used to detect what is thought to be “HIV” or to diagnose what is considered “AIDS”.
— If the mainstream view is correct, then “HIV infection” causes the damage to the gut.

Now, according to Sankaran et al., Journal of Virology, 82 (2008) 538-45:
“HIV-induced pathogenesis in GALT [gut-associated lymphoid tissue] emerges at both the molecular and cellular levels prior to seroconversion in primary HIV infection, potentially setting the stage for disease progression by impairing the ability to control viral replication and repair and regenerate intestinal mucosal tissues. . . . deterioration of the intestinal mucosa may initiate rapidly following infection . . . . HIV-induced enteropathy is well established within the first few weeks of infection, potentially even prior to seroconversion” [emphases added].
The examined biopsy samples had been obtained “at 4 to 8 weeks following HIV infection”; 3 of the 4 patients were then HIV-negative, and the 4th seroconverted 2 days before the biopsy. “Four highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART)-naive patients in the primary stage of HIV infection (4 to 8 weeks postinfection)” were studied. However, it is not explained how these individuals happened to be enrolled in this study and to be under observation even before seroconversion. The only mentioned reason for assuming “HIV infection” were “flu-like” symptoms, and at that time they tested HIV-negative. Cited earlier studies by the same authors give no more specific information about these individuals; the only clue is that the work seems to be associated with the Center for AIDS Research, Education and Services in Sacramento (CA): so perhaps gay men enroll who are concerned that they might be exposed to “HIV” and might at some time seroconvert?
At any rate, it seems permissible to doubt that the date of “HIV infection” could have been accurately known. But in any case this is immaterial for the present purpose. What is clear is that at some time prior to testing “HIV-positive”, these four individuals had experienced damage to the mucosal lymphoid tissue of the sort seen in “HIV disease” or “AIDS”.
That is precisely what Lance’s intestinal dysbiosis theory predicts.
The mainstream belief is that “HIV infection” immediately — albeit it not always! — produces “flu-like” symptoms, but that antibodies do not appear for several weeks. It seems at least equally plausible that damage to the gut’s immune system brings gut leakage and immune activation that immediately causes “flu-like” symptoms. After all, those symptoms — fever in particular — are the direct result of activation of the immune system as it responds to foreign presences.

*                    *                    *                    *                    *                    *                    *                    *

When Tony had first told me of his theory, it came as the answer to what had been for me the most puzzling aspect of the HIV/AIDS story, from the viewpoint of one who had already seen that “HIV” is not what it’s said to be. The puzzle was, why gay men tested “HIV-positive” at such high rates; even though many of them remained seemingly healthy; and why testing positive seemed maximally probable at ages in the thirties or early forties. The intestinal dysbiosis theory explains those: A certain degree of dysbiosis can produce a positive “HIV” test without causing significant ill health; but continuing damage to the gut microflora over a decade or two could bring ill health as well as testing “HIV” positive.

At the Oakland Conference, Tony described how he came to his theory. The abstract, slides, audio, and video of his talk are available at the Conference website.
(The YouTube version of Part 2 seems  to stop before the end of Tony’s talk.)
Watching that video, one must surely be impressed by the strength of character this man has displayed. He disclaims expertise in science, but Tony Lance has demonstrated the single most important feature of doing science properly: an unwavering determination to look at all the evidence and then to seek explanations for it.

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26 Responses to “Intestinal Dysbiosis theory confirmed”

  1. Truevirax said

    The work of Tony Lance has changed my way of thinking about disease fundamentally (in a private sense, i’m neither a physician nor an immunologist). In particular, I was not fully aware of the strong impact the gastrointestinal tract exerts on the immune system.

    Likewise, it seems to me that two distinct scientific approaches – the established bloodcentric view (CD4 count, viral load) and the emerging integrated view (GI tract, redox balance) – are competing for attention within HIV/AIDS research. This scientific competition brings somehow bewildering results to pass, such as this:

    The effect of early intervention with cART/HAART has been measured exclusively in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) as well as in both – PBMC and rectosigmoid colonic (RSC) biopsies representing the GI tract. Comparing the two studies which are characteristic for the two different approaches, it becomes quite obvious that therapeutic success is much a matter of perspective. The headlines are very telling already (both are open access articles):

    * Profound depletion of HIV-1 transcription in patients initiating antiretroviral therapy during acute infection. (PLoS One. 2010 Oct 12;5(10):e13310.)
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20967271

    * Early initiation of highly active antiretroviral therapy fails to reverse immunovirological abnormalities in gut-associated lymphoid tissue induced by acute HIV infection. (Antivir Ther. 2009;14(3):321-30.)
    http://www.intmedpress.com/serveFile.cfm?sUID=c3b29289-684a-4e58-b839-759d0803291c

    It may not come as a surprise that only the latter study speculates: “Prevention of mucosal assault by means of alternative therapeutic strategies might represent the turning point in the treatment of acute HIV infection and optimize the use of HAART in this key phase of HIV disease.”

    • Henry Bauer said

      Truevirax:
      Your knowledged of the pertinent literature has been tremendously helpful, thank you!
      There seems to have been a lot of back-and-forth in the mainstream about whether early is better than later, and whether treatment “holidays” are good or bad, not to mention the continual revisions, sometimes more than annually, to the official treatment guidelines.
      I think a major problem is that the criteria of CD4 counts and viral load don’t accurately and always predict clinical outcome, and sooner or later clinical outcomes are noticed.
      Worst of all is that all “HIV/AIDS” patients are treated as though they all have the same fudnamental disease, HIV infection, whereas being designated “HIV+” can result from a multitude of different causes. Inevitably, then, there will be no uniformity in responses to the standard treatments.

  2. mo79uk said

    Lance’s theory also explains AIDS-related dementia being treated with B12 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8501420 If your gut is damaged you won’t be able to absorb it, so you’d need either injections or sublingual high dose tablets of which 1% is absorbed by an alternative pathway than the gut.

    • Henry Bauer said

      mo79uk:
      Thanks! The abstract at PubMed raises the question, why attribute anything about the dementia to “HIV”?

  3. Frank said

    There are three videos of Tony discussing intestinal dysbiosis at the RA2009 Conference Video Series page on the Rethinking AIDS site:

    RethinkingAIDS.com/Content/tabid/172/Default.aspx

  4. There is a second immune suppression mechanism that Yamamoto discovered when he found that HIV+ subjects tested as having high levels of Nagalase due to properties of the gp120 protein. Nagalase is produced at high levels by pregnancy, and certain bacteria, and human cells infected with certain viruses, and, I suspect, almost all cancers that produce noticeable symptoms.

    By some means, Nagalase prevents the creation of GcMAF, the macrophage activating factor. It is created by removing two sugars from the triple sugar O-linked to the most common version of Gc, the vitamin D binding protein. Inflammation may be the trigger for exposing enzymes on the cell membranes of B and T cells which each remove a single sugar from Gc (or VDBP).

    Low levels of Nagalase are normal since one form of it is used in lysosomes in virtually all our human cells, though of course nine out of ten of the cells in our bodies are not human. Fetuses must prevent attack by activated macrophages as soon as mother’s blood can get there. I suspect that cancers which don’t happen to activate that fetal or placental Nagalase to protect themselves are consumed by activated macrophages.

  5. Martin said

    Hi Dr. Bauer, How long do you think the heroes of AIDS dissidence will be recognized (instead of vilified) by mainstream science and medicine? 25 years? 50 years? 100 years? Maybe never.

    • Henry Bauer said

      Martin:
      It will happen, and the mainstream will forget all about its own resistance. The true story will have to be told, as usual, not by scientists but by historians.

      • Gorky said

        Agreed that the true story will have to be told as usual by historians, historians of science and social historians of science.

        However I am pessimistic as to the truth about the HIV/AIDS fiasco ever becoming common knowledge, even a century from now. I feel it will just slowly fade away (please God) only to be replaced by another big medical fiasco and a few “minor” ones and on and on, if there is no radical change in questioning the fundamental assumptions in modern medicine by a critical mass in society itself. And given numerous vested interests, social inertia, careerism and the like, I cannot imagine any radical change at the dead heart of modern medicine (which is bad to the bone) even being conceivable.

        Or to put it another way, I do not see a Copernican revolution in medicine being achievable in the way it was in astronomy. The hold of the Church of “Science” or knowledge cartels as Bauer calls them appears just too strong and it is all perpetuated from generation to generation through conditioning (by the media, med schools, schools and universities). The next generation of dissidents/heretics will likewise be banished to the wildnerness more or less, just by a new generation of inquisitors and witch-hunters.

        Of course it is impossible to know what the future holds, it is nothing but speculation and guesswork to offer any prediction on anything whatsoever. So who knows what the future holds in store? I do hope I’m wrong and that my pessimism proves unfounded but I just don’t see how the truth on HIV/AIDS will ever ‘out’ in a universal way.

        A lot of AIDS dissidents don’t realise that it is more than vested financial interests, profiteering that is, and careerism that stands in the way of the heretical truth; there are deep-seated cultural factors that contribute to the deep hold that the HIV/AIDS fiasco has in our society. If anything these factors or variables are an even bigger hurdle for us to overcome than BigPharma, beauracracies and the know-nothing media.

      • Henry Bauer said

        Gorky:
        Did you choose your pen-name with a bow to the supposed Russian penchant for tragic pessimism? 8)
        I believe that until the moment that such a major revolution occurs, it must seem impossibly unlikely to happen. My hope is that some influential social sector will find it to its advantage to question the orthodoxy.

      • Guy said

        To admit the truth about HIV/AIDS would require confronting the horror of the AZT holocaust.

      • Henry Bauer said

        Guy:
        In logic, yes. In practice, no. The mainstream has published quite a bit of stuff that shows they know about the AZT holocaust, but they find ways to deny it, like Kuritzkes’ statemnets that the doses used earlier were a bit too high and not too well tolerated…. Or Walnsky et al. who simlply don’t count any benefit from antiretroviral treatment in the pre-HAART era.

      • Edward Kamau said

        It will happen but it will be outside the US and it will be tied to US geopolitical fortunes.
        The ascendance of HIV/AIDS is tied to the ascendance of the US and its doctrines/ideologies around the world. But that dominance is weakening, alternative centers of power are arising, China, India etc. As the worldwide political influence of the US weakens the political structures that support the US based AIDS religion will weaken, they already are weakening. This blog post is proof of that.

        Within the US, the establishment may never admit that the HIV/AIDS dogma was wrong. After all the “Africa will die of over population” crowd of the 1960-1980s has never admitted they were wrong, but they are not really taken seriously anymore. Thats what will happen to the HIV/AIDS crowd IMHO. (by the way, back in the late 1980s to early 1990s in Kenya you could get the full “Africa will be destroyed by over population” and “Africa will be destroyed by HIV/AIDS depopulation” propaganda all at the same time. Of course the US was then in complete ascendancy and whatever was put out by well funded US factions was repeated as gospel in places like Kenya. That has changed a lot since.)

        The US has promoted the HIV/AIDS dogma around the world for its own political and cultural reasons and as the worldwide political and cultural influence of the US wanes so will that dogma.

        emk

      • Henry Bauer said

        Edward Kamau:
        I think the pre-eminence of the USA in scientific matters will persist much longer than its dominance on other aspects.
        But what’s wrong with medical science, or science generally, is rather international; and stupidity is not linked to nationality.

  6. Martin said

    Hi Dr. Bauer, The sad thing about our current state of affairs is that when Galileo made his astronomical observations, Science was weak and Religion was strong. In the Age of Enlightenment, Religion’s criticisms of scientific observations were recognized as religious criticisms not science. Now, the problem is much more complicated because the criticisms come from “scientific” sources. The average person and I usually count myself in that league especially with complex and abstruse subjects where I just don’t know enough (or maybe can’t know enough) to judge which opinion or declared “fact” is correct.

    Here’s a quote from Thomas Szazs’s The Second Sin (1973): “Formerly, when religion was strong and science weak, men mistook magic for medicine; now, when science is strong and religion weak, men mistake medicine for magic.”

    • Henry Bauer said

      Martin:
      Good points all. Historian John Burnham wrote “How superstition won and science lost”, meaning that science nowadays is accepted superstitiously, on faith.

  7. Francis said

    Henry, I think you give too much credence to the good faith or nature of the medical research establishment in eventually self-correcting. Lately the voodoo doctors of retrovirology have moved their aim to a new class of potentially lucrative patients.

    Recent research has found that Xenotropic Murine Retro Virus (XMRV) has been found, depending on the survey, in up to 60% of patients suffering from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Immune Dysfunction Syndrome and Prostate Cancer. Pharmaceutical trials have been conducted on various HIV drugs to see which may be of use in treating these conditions. And yes, they have found a single drug that has been shown to kill the virus (in vitro)………….AZT. Researchers are excited because AZT has already been approved for human use, thereby fastracking the upcoming human trials.

    So, 27 years later, a retrovirus is detected in approximately 2/3 of a population suffering a “Syndrome” and a known failed carcinogenic toxic drug is dusted off the shelf for recycling. The saddest thing is there are also blogs that are abuzz with this “breakthrough” and people are asking on-line doctors about taking this drug to alleviate their symptoms, no doubt soon there will be CFS treatment action groups formed to force the roll-out of this revolutionary treatment.

    http://www.nature.com/nrurol/journal/v7/n7/abs/nrurol.2010.77.html
    http://cfidsresearch.blogspot.com/2009/12/news-on-important-new-studies-underway.html
    http://www.virology.ws/2009/12/08/azt-inhibits-xmrv/

    Those that don’t remember(or ignore) the past are doomed to repeat it.

    And from this morning’s radio news the latest breakthough from medical science involves the recycling of Beta Blockers to prevent osteoporosis-induced fractures in the elderly. Apparently, due to the success of the Statin drugs in treating heart disease, Beta Blockers (a 40-year-old treatment) are rarely prescribed today. But lo and behold, a study has concluded that they can be used to reduce fractures by up to 50% in the elderly opening up a new treatment regime. And let’s not forget that Thalidomide that once had the reputation of DDT is back on the market, but then……so is DDT.

    I think I prefer Gorky’s mindset. Better to be a pessimist and be occasionally pleasantly surprised, rather than an optimist who is constantly disappointed.

    • Henry Bauer said

      Francis:
      Am I really being so nice to the medical Establishment in calling them ignorant and incompetent rather than wilfully corrupt? Long ago I was impressed by this insight in one fo the Murphy’s Law books:
      NEVER ATTRIBUTE TO MALICE
      WHAT CAN BE EXPLAINED BY INCOMPETENCE
      because incompetence really is so much more common than deliberate malice

  8. Francis said

    Point taken Henry. In law under mens rea, there is also a point between malice aforethought and negligence, it is reckless indifference.

  9. Tony Lance said

    If dysregulation of intestinal flora plays a role in gay men being reactive on the “HIV test” then evidence of it should be present prior to “infection”. Given the fact that gut flora are known to modulate inflammatory cytokines, the following quote I recently found from Robert Gallo becomes especially interesting:

    “But we have learned—this should be of interest to everybody that isn’t completely married to HIV—that the inflammatory cytokines are reportedly increased in gay men even without HIV infection. Inflammatory cytokines are usually promoted by immune activation, not by immune suppression. So here was a paradox…. So the inflammatory cytokines may be increased by HIV, but I wish I knew what else was increasing them before a gay man was ever infected with HIV.”

    He goes on to say: “”The inflammatory cytokines are IL1 [interleukin 1], TNF [tumor necrosis factor], and gamma interferon. In gay men, the inflammatory cytokines are increased before HIV infection.”

    http://www.virusmyth.com/aids/hiv/jlpoppers.htm

    • Henry Bauer said

      Tony Lance:
      So in 1994, Gallo was NOT “married to HIV”! — A clear implication from his statement.

      • Tony Lance said

        Peter Duesberg was in the audience according to the article. Maybe the comment was directed at him. Just a guess.

  10. mo79uk said

    This looks interesting.
    http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20827914.700-intestine-grown-from-stem-cells-for-the-first-time.html

  11. t.d said

    He goes on to say: “”The inflammatory cytokines are IL1 [interleukin 1], TNF [tumor necrosis factor], and gamma interferon. In gay men, the inflammatory cytokines are increased before HIV infection.”

    these increase in tuberculosis

    • Ironically, while someone unfamiliar with HIV/AIDS science might think that the inflammatory cytokines cause one to test HIV positive in the first place, by the orthodoxy this would likely be interpreted as evidence that one is infectious before one tests positive (the “window period”).

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