November 2013


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Jim West <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Science for the People Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 11 Nov 2013 09:09:50 -0500
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I will recapitulate.  I asked Sam for the toxicology of AIDS and he had me rephrase my question.  He also brought related discussion, which I delayed getting into premature to my initial topic. 

Thanks to Sam for answering my question:  Sam is unaware of AIDS toxicology, and that concurs with my experience.  

Here is my continuance in the context of Sam's related discussion.

I will draw a simple parallel, since HIV/AIDS science and politics can be confusing.

A research biochemist can corrupt his laboratory in two ways:  1) Poison his specimens.  2) Avoid the toxicological status of his specimens.

If either option is selected, then his laboratory findings are moot.  The characteristics of any virus studied in such conditions are moot.  All subsequent research and literature based on the findings of that laboratory are in doubt.

Option #2 represents the history of AIDS research.


Dear Jim:

I have been following with interest your conversation with Sam. I am not a physical/life scientist. But I worked as part of an epidemiological research team at SUNY-HSCB for about a dozen years as statistician/scientific programmer.  

I understand that you are looking for toxicological studies of AIDS. That is fine. But that is not a response to the evidence Sam and Michael marshall in support of HIV as the main agent for AIDS.  It does seem to me that you are not engaging them directly. 

Now, there is no logical reason that a toxicology causation cannot be found in addition to the HIV.  But barring no toxicology evidence as you yourself concede then why do you try to discount the HIV theory of AIDS. It has ample scientific evidence in favor of it.

Also, although you do not state it and I may be wrong to read you this way: it does seem to me that you tend to think that there is some behind-the-scene reason for a lack of adequate toxicology studies of AIDS (again, there may be ample studies done--I based myself on your statement alone). I do not think such attitude--if I read you correctly-is warranted. Like Sam says and I observed closely by working and observing AIDS researchers from 1985-1995, they were hardworking sincere people who wanted to help their patients and improve medical science.  



On Sun, Nov 10, 2013 at 12:15 PM, Jim West <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

Granted, you are not a toxicologist.  Neither are you an epidemiologist, nor are you a virologist.  Yet, you have very strong opinions in favor of HIV causation, despite the missing toxicology.

I'm looking for the toxicological studies for AIDS causation.  They should be rigorous, not conjecture, and they should be at the cell, animal, human, and epidemiological level, and they should substantially fail, if they are to support the HIV theory of causation.  These studies should have occurred during the discovery era of the AIDS epidemics.  I doubt any such studies are to be found.


I am not a toxicologist, so I am trying to understand exactly what you are getting at.  I am also pointing out that the evidence suggests that toxicological explanations would not fit the epidemiologic data.  The only attempts I know of to make toxicological arguments had to do with early thinking that drug use overload (heroin, cocaine, maybe some club drugs of 70s) might explain AIDS.  These did not work out, as I partially explained below.

Do you know of any other efforts on this? And do you have any reason to think that the network-based data that strongly imply person to person transmission are inadequate?


-----Original Message-----
From: Jim West <[log in to unmask]>
To: SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE <[log in to unmask]>; Sam Friedman <[log in to unmask]>
Cc: Jim West <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Sun, Nov 10, 2013 1:48 pm
Subject: Re: HIV AIDS and toxicology

Sam, You are speculating from non-toxicological studies.  Apparently you are
unaware of any such toxicology studies.

If by that you mean where is the evidence that exposures to chemicals or
whatever are not important causes, the Auerbach et al (1984??) study that showed
the sexual networks connecting AIDS cases was pretty good evidence that personal
contact was involved.  The evidence that only injecting drug use was involved in
the early AIDS cases among drug users suggested pretty strongly that drug
toxicity was not a critical factor, as has the wide variety of different
injection drugs in different countries that have been associated with AIDS risk.

And, again, if it is toxic exposures, then medicines that target a specific
virus should not have been so effective at reducing both AIDS incidence and AIDS

-----Original Message-----
From: Jim West <[log in to unmask]>
To: SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE <[log in to unmask]>; Sam Friedman
<[log in to unmask]>
Cc: Jim West <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Sun, Nov 10, 2013 8:58 am
Subject: HIV AIDS and toxicology

Sam, Thanks for your reply.

Rephrasing my question:

Where is the toxicology of AIDS?  Toxicology should be a primary area of study
for an emerging disease.  Otherwise, characterizations of a causal virus could
be severely biased.