HIV/AIDS Skepticism

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

Posts Tagged ‘Matthias Rath’

Elsevier publishes another HIV-denialist article

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2010/01/13

“[T]here is extensive evidence that certain micronutrient deficiencies are associated with faster disease progression or increased mortality risk, and that dietary supplements . . . can prolong survival in HIV/AIDS. . . .
one aspect stands out in importance: the potential relationship to oxidative stress. . . . the antioxidant role of selenium in glutathione peroxidases . . . .
a daily supplement of 200 μg of selenium alone stopped progression of HIV-1 viral load increases, and lead [sic] to  improved  CD4  counts. . . . selenium status was reported to be 10 times  more  significant  than  CD4  cell  count  as  a  predictor  of   mortality. . . .
HIV infection is typically characterized by a dramatic decline in glutathione levels . . . [which] suggests an abnormal degree of biological oxidation, manifesting as elimination of cysteine sulfur as sulfate. A key feature of HIV disease is an apparent ‘antioxidant defect’ . . . [which] can be aggravated by co-factors such as malnutrition, co-infection with other microorganisms, and the use of various oxidant   drugs, such as nitrites. . . .
Intermediates of oxidative tryptophan metabolism have also been implicated in neurotoxicity, potentially contributing to AIDS dementia. . . .
oxidative   stress   can   induce niacin/NAD+ depletion. . . .
The oxidative stress-induced niacin sink (OSINS) model for HIV pathogenesis. . . . links oxidative stress and selenium to the observed tryptophan abnormalities and immunosuppression in HIV/AIDS. . . . [and] provides a mechanism whereby oxidative stress associated with HIV infection can contribute to immunosuppression via tryptophan deletion, as well as neurotoxicity via toxic tryptophan metabolites and ATP depletion. . . .
But whatever the source of oxidative stress, there would be a net effect towards niacin depletion and compensatory tryptophan oxidation. . . .
the need for certain nutrients in HIV infection may be largely secondary to an underlying defect that could be largely rectified by another nutrient, with antioxidants being the most fundamental to an effective regimen. . . .
whatever underlies or contributes to the antioxidant defect and increased oxidative stress . . . leads also to intracellular niacin depletion, and thereby to tryptophan depletion, with an end result of immunosuppression . . . and also T-cell loss” [emphases added].

It might seem natural to infer that this was written by the Perth Group, who have argued for upwards of two decades that “AIDS” results from oxidative stress, possibly with co-authorship by Rebecca Culshaw, who described the crucial role of glutathione, and by Harold Foster, who has long argued the central role of selenium, not to mention Matthias Rath, who has long spoken up for the value of micronutrients in treating AIDS patients.
But no. What’s more, none of those earlier publications are mentioned in this article by Ethan Will Taylor, “The oxidative stress-induced niacin sink (OSINS) model for HIV pathogenesis”, published on-line in Toxicology (Received 1 July 2009 — Received in revised form 10 October 2009 — Accepted 15 October 2009 — On-line at PubMed 24 October  [Epub ahead of print, PMID: 19857540, ).

(The review is described as “Hypothesis”, suggesting it might equally have been accepted by another Elsevier journal, Medical Hypotheses, were it not that the latter seems nowadays to bar anything that questions HIV/AIDS orthodoxy.)

At any rate, this article talks about “HIV-associated” oxidative stress and the benefits of nutritional supplements in “HIV-infected” people without demonstrating that “HIV” is actually involved. Essentially the same network of reactions and feedback applies in any situation of oxidative stress, as noted in the article: “whatever the source of oxidative stress . . . whatever underlies or contributes to the antioxidant defect and increased oxidative stress”. The only suggested involvement of HIV in the network of reactions is via a postulated stimulation of IDO (indoleamine-2,3-dioxygenase) by tat and nef proteins and an increased level of interferon γ ascribed to viral infection and immune activation.

If it could be shown that under generalized oxidative stress, substances are released that are capable of yielding an “HIV-positive” response, that would combine with this comprehensive review of the literature to make oxidative stress an entirely plausible cause of AIDS, a worthy alternative to the HIV/AIDS hypothesis.

In point of fact, it is already well and long known that “HIV-positive” is a condition that can be brought on by a large range of conditions and infections: hypergammaglobulinemia, tuberculosis, or vaccination against flu, and dozens more documented by Christine Johnson (“Whose antibodies are they anyway? Factors known to cause  false positive HIV antibody test results”, Continuum, #3, Sept./Oct. 1996, p.4, anti-tetanus shots (Saag et al., Nature Med 1996;2:625-9 and Gonnelli et al., Lancet 1991;337:731), and even pregnancy (Taha et al., AIDS 1998;12:197-203; Gray et al., Am J Obstet Gynecol 2001;185:1209-17; Gray et al., Lancet 2005;366:1182-8). Drug abusers very often test “HIV-positive”. That the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention included increasing numbers of conditions as “AIDS-defining” after “HIV-positive” became a criterion reflects the fact that many illnesses induce oxidative stress and the resulting “HIV-positive” status.

Here is a simple way of Rethinking AIDS:
There are two hypotheses.
1. AIDS is caused by a previously unknown retrovirus that first infected gay men simultaneously in several large metropolitan areas in the United States even though it had first crossed into humans in Africa. No vaccine or microbicide against it has been found after more than two decades of concentrated effort. Transmitted sexually, it is however very difficult to transmit, which is why it has remained within the original risk groups of promiscuous drug-abusing gay men and other drug abusers, except in Africa where 20-40% of the adult population has several sexual partners simultaneously and changes them frequently (James Chin, The AIDS Pandemic); however, the retrovirus has never actually been observed, in prospective studies, to be transmitted sexually. It kills T-cells by some unknown but certainly indirect as well as obscure mechanism. Though transmitted by breastfeeding, it is transmitted less, the greater the degree of exclusive breastfeeding. The presence of antibodies denotes active infection even when no actual virus can be detected. Some significant proportion of those infected remain healthy, even as no reason for this immunity has been discovered. One of the three original salient AIDS diseases supposedly caused by this retrovirus, Kaposi’s sarcoma, turns out not to be caused by it after all. Antibodies to the retrovirus appear after vaccination against flu, or after an anti-tetanus shot, and in a host of illnesses as well as natural conditions of some physiological stress like pregnancy. In an appreciable number of AIDS cases, no antibodies or retrovirus could be found, but this could be explained away as another new disease, idiopathic CD4-T-cell lymphopenia. Drugs that kill the virus do not correlate with restoration of the immune system nor with improved health. Indeed, purported restoration of the immune system with these drugs brings on another new ailment, “immune restoration syndrome”, a worsening of clinical condition with symptoms that mimic AIDS. The retrovirus mutates at unprecedented speed, so that infected individuals harbor not a single variant but a swarm of variants; and all variants and strains appear to be pathogenic to similar extents. Antiretroviral treatment is by toxic drugs whose side effects are so severe that non-compliance by patients has been observed or estimated at nearly 50%. Deaths from AIDS continue to occur in the same age-range as before, roughly mid-30s to late 40s. Although the retrovirus is latent for an average of a decade before causing illness, the age of first infection, of first AIDS diagnosis, and of death are all in that same age range.
2. AIDS is caused by oxidative stress. Proof: dietary supplements of antioxidants and essential minerals and vitamins restore health and extend life without dangerous side effects.

Posted in Alternative AIDS treatments, HIV absurdities, HIV as stress, HIV does not cause AIDS, HIV skepticism, HIV tests, HIV transmission, sexual transmission, vaccines | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 45 Comments »

Always blame HIV and the previous administration

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2009/09/09

When I was a dean, people enjoyed telling me unkind “dean” jokes. A good one was about the 3 envelopes that a retiring dean hands to the incoming dean, with instructions to open them in the designated order as crises occur. Comes the first crisis, and envelope 1 gives the excellent advice, “Blame the former dean”. Politicians do that too.

President Mbeki and his Health minister “Dr. Beetroot” had been fiercely attacked by HIV/AIDS vigilantes for withholding antiretroviral drugs and urging good nutrition, and they continue to be maligned retrospectively:

“South Africa has an estimated 5.5 million people living with the HIV virus, the highest total of any country. As the epidemic raged, then President Thabo Mbeki, who stepped down last year after nearly a decade in power, denied the link between HIV and AIDS, and his health minister Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, mistrusted conventional anti-AIDS drugs. . . . The Lancet said the policies of [Aaron] Motsoaledi’s predecessor, Tshabalala-Msimang, ‘not only led to the unnecessary deaths of over 300,000 South Africans (who were denied antiretroviral medicines), but also squandered much of South Africa’s hope for enlightened post-apartheid government. Motsoaledi has said of the previous government’s stance on AIDS: ‘It was wrong, and it set us back 10 years’” [“South Africa launches child vaccination campaign”].

One might expect that to be the prelude to an announcement of widespread distribution of antiretroviral drugs. Not so:

“The doctor praised for re-energizing South Africa’s Health Ministry launched a major campaign Monday to get vaccinations and immunity-boosting vitamins to 3 million children across the country over the next two weeks”.
One can only hope that the Health Ministry is not getting its vitamins from Dr. Matthias Rath, who has been advocating such supplements for many years, to the tune of vicious and continuing attacks from “AIDS activists”.

So what does President Mbeki or Health Minister Manto Tshabalala-Msimang or “HIV” or “AIDS” have to do with this vaccination-and-vitamins initiative?

Absolutely nothing, of course — unless, that is, one recognizes what the HIV Skeptics and AIDS Rethinkers do, that “AIDS” in Africa is a grab-bag of well known diseases and that the “epidemic” has been fueled by malnutrition; and that it serves the present administration’s purpose to blame the previous one for everything amiss in South Africa.


(Completion of dean joke:
Envelope 2 says, “Set up a committee”. Politicians do that too.
Envelope 3 says, “Prepare 3 envelopes”. Politicians unfortunately do not do that.)

Posted in Alternative AIDS treatments, antiretroviral drugs, HIV does not cause AIDS, HIV in children, HIV/AIDS numbers, uncritical media | Tagged: , , , , | 5 Comments »

Routine “HIV” tests; herbal magic; Canadian natives at risk

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2009/08/21

Veterans to routinely be offered HIV tests [posted 2009:08:19] — The Veterans Affairs Department has begun offering routine HIV tests to veterans who receive medical care. The new policy follows recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which advised that all patients should be offered HIV testing even if they are not considered at risk. The hope is that more veterans will get tested and, when necessary, receive medical treatment early.”
PREDICTION:  It will turn out that an alarmingly high proportion of veterans with no risk factors are “HIV-positive”, and of course didn’t know it.


“HerbalScience research demonstrates that HIV infection is inhibited by elderberry, cinnamon, and green tea extracts”
No, this is NOT being said by the much maligned South African former Health Minister “Dr. Beetroot”; it’s in Antiviral Chemistry & Chemotherapy, a peer-reviewed scientific journal. The work is joint between the University of Miami Leonard Miller School of Medicine and the commercial outfit HerbalScience (not connected in any way to much maligned Dr. Matthias Rath, who has long advocated the benefits of vitamins and natural remedies in connection with “HIV/AIDS”).
“Previous research by HerbalScience had demonstrated the ability of its proprietary elderberry extract to inhibit entry of the H1N1 influenza virus into target cells. For the HIV study, researchers used the same elderberry extract, and compared the antiviral activities to those of extracts obtained from green tea and cinnamon, two botanicals that are also known to be rich in flavonoids, plant nutrients that are beneficial to health. All the extracts were prepared using the company’s patented extraction technologies. . . . Furthermore, the study examined the inhibitory interactions between the elderberry extract and enfuvirtide (also termed Fuzeon), among the first of a new class of HIV antiviral drugs called entry inhibitors, or drugs that disrupt the fusion of virus and target cells. . . .  When enfuvirtide was combined with the elderberry extract, the inhibition of infection increased by nearly 6 orders of magnitude.”
A real panacea, apparently; and even without any mentioned ingredient of snake oil.

I’ve commented before on the unremarkable fact that when mainstream researchers find value in alternative remedies, that’s sound science; but when others report similar findings, it gets dismissed as pseudo-science [Mainstream pseudo-science good, alternative pseudo-science bad, 25 February 2009; UCLA’s AIDS (“Beetroot”) Institute discovers how HIV kills cells, 2 January 2009].


Canadian aboriginals behave like Estonians but are doomed to die like South Africans
Native Americans are far less likely to test “HIV-positive” than are people of African ancestry; Aboriginal Americans test “HIV-positive” very little more often than Caucasians and significantly less often than Hispanics (for example, pp. 50, 64-6 in The Origin, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory). Yet
“HIV could devastate Sask. First Nations” (2009:08:20)
This dire prediction comes from “Dr. Khami Chokani, the medical health officer for the Prince Albert Parkland Health Region. Chokani has worked in countries across southern Africa. ‘If you think decimating the African population was bad . . . HIV in this province will kill 15 to 30 per cent (of the aboriginal population). Not all at one time, but over a five- to 10-year period.’”
[The African population hasn’t been decimated, by the way. It‘s been growing at about 3% annually throughout the “AIDS epidemic”
Here’s the basis for concern in Canada: “There were a total of 174 cases of HIV in the province [Saskatchewan] in 2008, a threefold increase from 2004 . . . . Of those 174, more than 100 victims were aboriginal.”
“There are 141,890 First Nations people in Saskatchewan”.
That’s a truly alarming incidence, isn’t it: 100 in 140,000, or 1 in 1,400. Quite comparable to the alarming rate in Estonia [Estonian drug addicts don’t have much sex, 13 August 2009; “HIV/AIDS” in Estonia: Demographics and Shibboleths, 18 August 2009]. And curiously enough, just as in Estonia and Latvia and Lithuania and Russia and Eastern Europe generally, “intravenous-drug users sharing needles is the main way HIV is transmitted in the province. Young aboriginal women are of increasing concern. . . . primarily in the young females, pregnant women and newborn babies”.
AIDS Rethinkers and HIV Skeptics, unlike mainstream HIV/AIDS researchers, know that solid data show that drug abuse causes both ill health and testing “HIV-positive”; and that pregnancy and birth are both conditions that have a tendency to stimulate a positive “HIV”-test result.
PREDICTION:  There will be increased testing, increased prescribing of antiretroviral drugs, and an alarming increase in the death rate.

Posted in Alternative AIDS treatments, antiretroviral drugs, experts, HIV absurdities, HIV and race, HIV does not cause AIDS, HIV in children, HIV risk groups, HIV skepticism, HIV tests, HIV transmission, HIV/AIDS numbers | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

“HIV” and illness: Which comes first?

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2009/07/23

According to HIV/AIDS theory, “HIV” — whatever it is that is detected by “HIV” tests — precedes damage to the immune system and consequent illness.

Rethinkers and Skeptics, however, claim the opposite:
According to the Perth Group, “HIV-positive” is merely a symptom of oxidative stress.
According to Duesberg, the presence of “HIV” indicates a condition by which “HIV” is generated as a harmless “passenger” side-effect.
A comparison of “HIV-positive” frequency across population sub-groups indicates that the general state of health or fitness correlates with the tendency to test “HIV-positive”
(The Origin, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory, Figure 22, p. 83)

Specific observations that support the Rethinker view include:
Flu vaccination can lead to a positive “HIV” test
Anti-tetanus likewise
and more such instances in Christine Johnson’s classic enumeration.

A recent article not only adds further confirmation to the Rethinker case, it lends considerable specific support to Tony Lance’s hypothesis that intestinal dysbiosis can lead to testing “HIV-positive”, to dysfunction of the immune system, and to the fungal infections that were the first opportunistic infections described as “AIDS”:
Melinda Wenner, “A cultured response to HIV”, Nature Medicine, 15 (2009) 594-7.

A summary of that article is on-line at TheBody. Have a look at Liang’s comment: “I was very prone to diarrhea and gum infection before being hiv positive.”

In the Nature Medicine article, there’s something similar:
“’It’s almost like the gut is a magnet for the virus early on. [It] becomes compromised in weeks,’ says Bill Critchfield, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of California–Davis.”
A diagnosis of “HIV-positive” will typically follow some signs of illness that led to a doctor’s visit. However, there will rarely or never be any prior knowledge of the condition of the gut. According to the orthodoxy, “HIV” does its work very slowly, not “within weeks”. Ergo: this too is eminently consistent with the hypothesis that damage to the intestinal flora precedes testing “HIV-positive”.
The mainstream has increasingly acknowledged the relation between gut and “HIV”, without yet realizing that this supports the dysbiosis hypothesis and not the HIV/AIDS one.
It’s also worth noting that CD4 counts in the blood continue to be cited by mainstream researchers even as they begin to glimpse that it’s the gut where the action is. As Juliane Sacher (among others) has pointed out, immune-system cells move around the body according to where they’re needed, and the level in the blood cannot be taken as an indication of depletion or increase overall.

Note, too, that when Western sources advocate a natural — dare I say naturopathic? — treatment for “HIV”, in this case probiotic yogurt, it isn’t immediately greeted with cries of “pseudo-science”. That’s reserved for non-Westerners who make similar suggestions and for individuals like Matthias Rath, MD, one-time research colleague of Linus Pauling.

Posted in Alternative AIDS treatments, HIV as stress, HIV does not cause AIDS, HIV risk groups, HIV skepticism, HIV tests | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments »

Protease inhibitors cause oxidative stress

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2009/04/25

Mainstream propaganda harps continually on the life-saving virtues of HAART, treatment that often combines a couple of reverse-transcriptase inhibitors and a protease inhibitor (PI). Indeed, it was the introduction of PIs that marked the beginning of David Ho’s “hit hard, hit early” approach that has become known as Highly Active AntiRetroviral Treatment.

Rethinkers and Skeptics who point to the  seriously debilitating “side” effects of HAART are brushed aside, even as the NIH’s Treatment Guidelines acknowledge that the majority of adverse events experienced by HAART-treated “AIDS” patients are owing to HAART and not to “AIDS”:
“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 . . .  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, January 2008 version).

The research literature, too, reveals what publicly disseminated propaganda refuses to acknowledge, for example, that PIs interfere drastically with fat metabolism and mitochondrial function, which includes absolutely-essential-to-life energy processes:

Public release date: 25-Mar-2009
Contact: Dr. Krishna C. Agrawal
Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine
. . . HIV-1 protease inhibitors (PIs), such as nelfinavir included in highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) regimen for the treatment of HIV-1 patients, induce deleterious effects on insulin secretion mediated through the oxidative stress pathway. . . . A significant decrease in ATP production was also observed . . . . This study appears in the April 2009 issue of Experimental Biology and Medicine. Although insulin resistance has been clinically observed in HIV-1 patients receiving HAART regimen, the molecular mechanisms of this metabolic abnormality have not been delineated.
. . . . Since the hypoglycemic effects of Nigella sativa oil have been investigated in the past, the investigators postulated that nelfinavir induced oxidative stress may be ameliorated by the administration of the active ingredient of this oil, thymoquinone. Furthermore, it was envisioned that since thymoquinone shares a structural homology with ubiquinone [commonly known as Coenzyme Q10] (mitochondrial component) it is likely that it may act as a mitochondrial antioxidant. . . . these findings clearly suggest a potential role for the use of black seed oil or thymoquione [sic] as a protective agent against HIV-1 protease inhibitor induced deleterious effects on pancreatic beta-cells”.

Reports like these are no doubt acceptable because they don’t stress the deleterious “side” effects of HAART but rather emphasize the “positive” approach of guarding against those “side” effects. Nevertheless, this is a back-door acknowledgement of how serious those “side” effects are.

Note too that when a traditional remedy is touted by mainstream researchers — here “Nigella sativa oil” or “black seed oil” — this is scientifically acceptable, whereas suggesting the benefits of traditional remedies is laughed out of court if proposed by the South African Minister of Health or by Dr. Matthias Rath (UCLA’s AIDS (“Beetroot”) Institute discovers how HIV kills cells, 2 January 2009; Mainstream pseudo-science good, alternative pseudo-science bad, 25 February 2009).

“Oxidative stress”, too, becomes scientifically acceptable when discussed in this context, but not when the Perth Group points to its explanatory power in relation to AIDS; nor does it bear mentioning that the oft-maligned Matthias Rath worked with Linus Pauling, who is arguably responsible for the wide recognition of the value of nutritional antioxidants like vitamin C.

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