The appropriate "vaccine" for cervical cancer is enhancement of the immune system and removal of chemical toxins from our environment and our food. Cervical cancer (and cancer in general, with a few rare exceptions) is a recent historical artifact, created by the degradation of our environment. Given the nature of our environment and our food today, to prevent cancer from arising and spreading people need to take fairly extensive quantities of immune-enhancing nutrients (so that when the immune system discovers the errant cell it has the strength and ability to isolate and destroy it) and natural protease inhibitors (to stop any errant cells from replicating and spreading).

If you want to find out the reason for promotion of the cervical cancer vaccine, follow the money. Vaccines are an enormous profit center for the pharmaceutical industry. If there were no money in it, they wouldn't promote it. Look at the battery of vaccines now administered to children, for diseases that are completely curable with either antibiotics or natural immune enhancing supplements, or for a disease to which they will never be exposed at least until they are adults (hep B), and you can see that the cash register rings a few billion times a year. Or the so-called "flu vaccine" which is proven useless (or worse), year after year, because by the time it is administered the flu has mutated. To say nothing of pregnant women having their fetuses exposed to mercury, an extreme neurotoxin, during the most critical period of brain development in the fetus.

  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Michael Balter 
  To: [log in to unmask] 
  Sent: Saturday, February 17, 2007 3:13 AM
  Subject: Re: The Hidden Face of HIV -- Part 1

  I would be interested in hearing list members' views on the cervical cancer vaccine controversy. Is this a pharmaceutical industry plot to make piles of profits, a vital protection for young women, or both? How do progressive science-oriented folks deal with controversies like this? 

  Just asking.


  On 2/17/07, Mitchel Cohen <[log in to unmask]> wrote: 
    The Hidden Face of HIV -- Part 1

    "Knowing is Beautiful"

    By Liam Scheff
    Published: Monday January 3rd, 2005

    As a journalist who writes about AIDS, I am endlessly amazed by the 
    difference between the public and the private face of HIV; between
    what the public is told and what's explained in the medical
    literature. The public face of HIV is well-known: HIV is a sexually
    transmitted virus that particularly preys on gay men, African 
    Americans, drug users, and just about all of Africa, although we're
    all at risk. We're encouraged to be tested, because, as the MTV ads
    say, "knowing is beautiful." We also know that AIDS drugs are all 
    that's stopping the entire African continent from falling into the sea.

    The medical literature spells it out differently -- quite
    differently. The journals that review HIV tests, drugs and patients,
    as well as the instructional material from medical schools, the 
    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and HIV test manufacturers will
    agree with the public perception in the large print. But when you get
    past the titles, they'll tell you, unabashedly, that HIV tests are
    not standardized; that they're arbitrarily interpreted; that HIV is 
    not required for AIDS; and finally, that the term HIV does not
    describe a single entity, but instead describes a collection of
    non-specific, cross-reactive cellular material.

    That's quite a difference. 

    The popular view of AIDS is held up by concerned people desperate to
    help the millions of Africans stricken with AIDS, the same disease
    that first afflicted young gay American men in the 1980s. The medical
    literature differs on this point. It says that that AIDS in Africa
    has always been diagnosed differently than AIDS in the U.S.

    In 1985, the World Health Organization called a meeting in Bangui,
    the capital of the Central African Republic, to define African AIDS. 
    The meeting was presided over by CDC official Joseph McCormick. He
    wrote about in his book "Level 4 Virus hunters of the CDC," saying,
    "If I could get everyone at the WHO meeting in Bangui to agree on a 
    single, simple definition of what an AIDS case was in Africa, then,
    imperfect as the definition might be, we could actually start
    counting the cases. . . " The results -- African AIDS would be
    defined by physical symptoms: fever, diarrhea, weight loss and 
    coughing or itching. ("AIDS in Africa: an epidemiological paradigm."
    Science, 1986)

    In Sub-Saharan African about 60 percent of the population lives and
    dies without safe drinking water, adequate food or basic sanitation. 
    A September, 2003 report in the Ugandan Daily "New Vision" outlined
    the situation in Kampala, a city of approximately 1.3 million
    inhabitants, which, like most tropical countries, experiences
    seasonal flooding. The report describes "heaps of unclaimed garbage" 
    among the crowded houses in the flood zones and "countless pools of
    water [that] provide a breeding ground for mosquitoes and create a
    dirty environment that favors cholera."

    "[L]atrines are built above water streams. During rains the area 
    residents usually open a hole to release feces from the latrines. The
    rain then washes away the feces to streams, from where the [area
    residents] fetch water. However, not many people have access to
    toilet facilities. Some defecate in polythene bags, which they throw 
    into the stream." They call these, "flying toilets.''

    The state-run Ugandan National Water and Sewerage Corporation states
    that currently 55% of Kampala is provided with treated water, and
    only 8% with sewage reclamation.

    Most rural villages are without any sanitary water source. People
    wash clothes, bathe and dump untreated waste up and downstream from
    where water is drawn. Watering holes are shared with animal 
    populations, which drink, bathe, urinate and defecate at the water
    source. Unmanaged human waste pollutes water with infectious and
    often deadly bacteria. Stagnant water breeds mosquitoes, which bring
    malaria. Infectious diarrhea, dysentery, cholera, TB, malaria and 
    famine are the top killers in Africa. But in 1985, they became AIDS.

    The public service announcements that run on VH1 and MTV, informing
    us of the millions of infected, always fail to mention this. I don't 
    know what we're supposed to do with the information that 40 million
    people are dying and nothing can be done. I wonder why we wouldn't be
    interested in building wells and providing clean water and sewage 
    systems for Africans. Given our great concern, it would seem foolish
    not to immediately begin the "clean water for Africa" campaign. But
    I've never heard such a thing mentioned.

    The UN recommendations for Africa actually demand the opposite 
    --"billions of dollars" taken out of "social funds, education and
    health projects, infrastructure [and] rural development" and
    "redirected" into sex education (UNAIDS, 1999). No clean water, but 
    plenty of condoms.

    I have, however, felt the push to get AIDS drugs to Africans. Drugs
    like AZT and Nevirapine, which are supposed to stop the spread of
    HIV, especially in pregnant women. AZT and Nevirapine also terminate 
    life. The medical literature and warning labels list the side
    effects: blood cell destruction, birth defects, bone-marrow death,
    spontaneous abortion, organ failure, and fatal skin rot. The package
    inserts also state that the drugs don't "stop HIV or prevent AIDS illnesses." 

    The companies that make these drugs take advantage of the public
    perception that HIV is measured in individual African AIDS patients,
    and that African AIDS -- water-borne illness and poverty -- can be
    cured by AZT and Nevirapine. That's good capitalism, but it's bad medicine. 

    Currently MTV, Black Entertainment Television and VH1 are running
    advertisements of handsome young couples, black and white, touching,
    caressing, sensually, warming up to love-making. The camera moves
    over their bodies, hands, necks, mouth, back, legs and arms -- and we 
    see a small butterfly bandage over their inner elbow, where they've
    given blood for an HIV test. The announcer says, "Knowing is
    beautiful." Get tested.

    A September, 2004 San Francisco Chronicle article considered the 
    "beauty" of testing. It told the story of 59 year-old veteran Jim
    Malone, who'd been told in 1996 that he was HIV positive. His health
    was diagnosed as "very poor." He was classified as, "permanently 
    disabled and unable to work or participate in any stressful situation
    whatsoever." Malone said, "When I wasn't able to eat, when I was
    sick, my in-home health care nurse would say, 'Well, Jim, it goes 
    with your condition.' That's the way I thought," he said.

    In 2004, his doctor sent him a note to tell him he was actually
    negative. He had tested positive at one hospital, and negative at
    another. Nobody asked why the second test was more accurate than the 
    first (that was the protocol at the Veteran's Hospital). Having been
    falsely diagnosed and spending nearly a decade waiting, expecting to
    die, Malone said, "I would tell people to get not just one HIV test, 
    but multiple tests. I would say test, test and retest."

    In the article, AIDS experts assured the public that the story was
    "extraordinarily rare." But the medical literature differs significantly. 

    In 1985, at the beginning of HIV testing, it was known that "68% to
    89% of all repeatedly reactive ELISA (HIV antibody) tests [were]
    likely to represent false positive results." (NEJM -- New England 
    Journal of Medicine. 312; 1985).

    In 1992, the Lancet reported that for 66 true positives, there were
    30,000 false positives. And in pregnant women, "there were 8,000
    false positives for 6 confirmations." (Lancet 339; 1992) 

    In September 2000, the Archives of Family Medicine stated that the
    more women we test, the greater "the proportion of false-positive and
    ambiguous (indeterminate) test results." (Archives of Family 
    Medicine. Sept/Oct. 2000).

    The tests described above are standard HIV tests, the kind promoted
    in the ads. Their technical name is ELISA or EIA (Enzyme-linked
    Immunosorbant Assay). They are antibody tests. The tests contain 
    proteins that react with antibodies in your blood.

    In the U.S., you're tested with an ELISA first. If your blood reacts,
    you'll be tested again, with another ELISA. Why is the second more
    accurate than the first? That's just the protocol. If you have a 
    reaction on the second ELISA, you'll be confirmed with a third
    antibody test, called the Western Blot. But that's here in America.
    In some countries, one ELISA is all you get.

    It is precisely because HIV tests are antibody tests, that they 
    produce so many false-positive results. All antibodies tend to
    cross-react. We produce antibodies all the time, in response to
    stress, malnutrition, illness, drug use, vaccination, foods we eat, a
    cut, a cold, even pregnancy. These antibodies are known to make HIV 
    tests come up as positive.

    The medical literature lists dozens of reasons for positive HIV test
    results: "transfusions, transplantation, or pregnancy, autoimmune
    disorders, malignancies, alcoholic liver disease, or for reasons that 
    are unclear. . . "(Archives of Family Medicine, Sept/Oct. 2000).

    "[H]uman or technical errors, other viruses and vaccines" (Infectious
    Disease Clinician of North America 7; 1993)

    "[L]iver diseases, parenteral substance abuse, hemodialysis, or 
    vaccinations for hepatitis B, rabies, or influenza. . . " (Archives
    of Internal Medicine August, 2000).

    "[U]npasteurized cows' milk. . . Bovine exposure, or cross-reactivity
    with other human retroviruses" (Transfusion,1988) 

    Even geography can do it:

    "Inhabitants of certain regions may have cross-reactive antibodies to
    local prevalent non-HIV retroviruses" (Medicine International 56; 1988).

    The same is true for the confirmatory test -- the Western Blot. 

    Causes of indeterminate Western Blots include: "lymphoma, multiple
    sclerosis, injection drug use, liver disease, or autoimmune
    disorders. Also, there appear to be healthy individuals with
    antibodies that cross-react. . . ." (Archives of Internal Medicine, 
    August 2000).

    "The Western Blot is not used as a screening tool because. . . it
    yields an unacceptably high percentage of indeterminate results."
    (Archives of Family Medicine, Sept/Oct 2000)

    Pregnancy is consistently listed as a cause of positive test results,
    even by the test manufacturers. "[False positives can be caused by]
    prior pregnancy, blood transfusions. . . and other potential
    nonspecific reactions." (Vironostika HIV Test, 2003). 

    This is significant in Africa, because HIV estimates for African
    nations are drawn almost exclusively from testing done on groups of
    pregnant women.

    In Zimbabwe this year, the rate of HIV infection among young women 
    decreased remarkably, from 32.5 to 6 percent. A drop of 81% --
    overnight. UNICEF's Swaziland representative, Dr. Alan Brody, told
    the press "The problems is that all the sero-surveillance data came
    from pregnant women, and estimates for other demographics was based 
    on that." (PLUS News, August, 2004)

    When these pregnant young women are tested, they're often tested for
    other illnesses, like syphilis, at the same time. There's no concern
    for cross-reactivity or false-positives in this group, and no repeat 
    testing. One ELISA on one girl, and 32.5% of the population is
    suddenly HIV positive.

    The June 20, 2004 Boston Globe reported that "the current estimate of
    40 million people living with the AIDS virus worldwide is inflated by 
    25 percent to 50 percent."

    They pointed out that HIV estimates for entire countries have, for
    over a decade, been taken from "blood samples from pregnant women at
    prenatal clinics."

    But it's not just HIV estimates that are created from testing
    pregnant women, it's "AIDS deaths, AIDS orphans, numbers of people
    needing antiretroviral treatment, and the average life expectancy,"
    all from that one test.

    I've certainly never seen this in VH1 ad.

    At present there are about six dozen reasons given in the literature
    why the tests come up positive. In fact, the medical literature
    states that there is simply no way of knowing if any HIV test is
    truly positive or negative:

    "[F]alse-positive reactions have been observed with every single
    HIV-1 protein, recombinant or authentic." (Clinical Chemistry. 37; 
    1991). "Thus, it may be impossible to relate an antibody response
    specifically to HIV-1 infection." (Medicine International, 1988)

    And even if you believe the reaction is not a false positive, "the 
    test does not indicate whether the person currently harbors the
    virus." (Science, November, 1999).

    The test manufacturers state that after the antibody reaction occurs,
    the tests have to be "interpreted." There is no strict or clear 
    definition of HIV positive or negative. There's just the antibody
    reaction. The reaction is colored by an enzyme, and read by a machine
    called a spectrophotometer.

    The machine grades the reactions according to their strength (but not 
    specificity), above and below a cut-off. If you test above the
    cut-off, you're positive; if you test below it, you're negative.

    So what determines the all-important cut-off? From The CDC's
    instructional material: "Establishing the cutoff value to define a 
    positive test result from a negative one is somewhat arbitrary."
    (CDC-EIS, "Screening For HIV," 2003 )

    The University of Vermont Medical School agrees: "Where a cutoff is
    drawn to determine a diagnostic test result may be somewhat 
    arbitrary. . . .Where would the director of the Blood Bank who is
    screening donated blood for HIV antibody want to put the
    cut-off?...Where would an investigator enrolling high-risk patients
    in a clinical trial for an experimental, potentially toxic 
    antiretroviral draw the cutoff?" (University of Vermont School of
    Medicine teaching module: Diagnostic Testing for HIV Infection)

    A 1995 study comparing four major brands of HIV tests found that they
    all had different cut-off points, and as a result, gave different
    test results for the same sample: "[C]ut-off ratios do not correlate
    for any of the investigated ELISA pairs," and one test's cut-off
    point had "no predictive value" for any other. (INCQS-DSH, Brazil 1995).

    I've never heard of a person being asked where they would "want to
    put the cut-off" for determining their HIV test result, or if they 
    felt that testing positive was a "somewhat arbitrary" experience.

    In the UK, if you get through two ELISA tests, you're positive. In
    America, you get a third and final test to confirm the first two. The 
    test is called the Western Blot. It uses the same proteins, laid out
    differently. Same proteins, same nonspecific reactions. But this time
    it's read as lines on a page, not a color change. Which lines are HIV 
    positive? That depends on where you are, what lab you're in and what
    kit they're using.

    The Mayo Clinic reported that "the Western blot method lacks
    standardization, is cumbersome, and is subjective in interpretation 
    of banding patterns." (Mayo Clinic Procedural, 1988)

    A 1988 study in the Journal of the American Medical Association
    reported that 19 different labs, testing one blood sample, got 19
    different Western Blot results. (JAMA, 260, 1988) 

    A 1993 review in Bio/Technology reported that the FDA, the
    CDC/Department of Defense and the Red Cross all interpret WB's
    differently, and further noted, "All the other major USA laboratories
    for HIV testing have their own criteria." (Bio/Technology, June 1993) 

    In the early 1990s, perhaps in response to growing discontent in the
    medical community with the lack of precision of the tests, Roche
    Laboratories introduced a new genetic test, called Viral Load, based
    on a technology called PCR. How good is the new genetic marvel? 

    An early review of the technology in the 1991 Journal of AIDS
    reported that "a true positive PCR test cannot be distinguished from
    a false positive." (J.AIDS, 1991)

    A 1992 study "identified a disturbingly high rate of nonspecific 
    positivity," saying 18% antibody-negative (under the cut-off)
    patients tested Viral Load positive. (J. AIDS, 1992)

    A 2001 study showed that the tests gave wildly different results from
    a single blood sample, as well as different results with different 
    test brands. (CDC MMWR, November 16, 2001)

    A 2002 African study showed that Viral Load was high in patients who
    had intestinal worms, but went down when they were treated for the
    problem. The title of the article really said it all. "Treatment of 
    Intestinal Worms Is Associated With Decreased HIV Plasma Viral Load."
    (J.AIDS, September, 2002)

    Roche laboratories, the company that manufactures the PCR tests, puts
    this warning on the label:

    "The AMPLICOR HIV-1 MONITOR Test. . . .is not intended to be used as
    a screening test for HIV or as a diagnostic test to confirm the
    presence of HIV infection."

    But that's exactly how it is used -- to convince pregnant mothers to 
    take AZT and Nevirapine and to urge patients to start the drugs.

    The medical literature adds something truly astounding to all of
    this. It says that reason HIV tests are so non-specific and need to
    be interpreted is because there is "no virologic gold standard" for HIV tests. 

    The meaning of this statement, from both the medical and social
    perspective, is profound. The "virologic gold standard" is the
    isolated virus that the doctors claim to be identifying, indirectly,
    with the test.

    Antibody tests always have some cross-reaction, because antibodies
    aren't specific. The way to validate a test is to go find the virus
    in the patient's blood.

    You take the blood, spin it in a centrifuge, and you end up with 
    millions of little virus particles, which you can easily photograph
    under a microscope. You can disassemble the virus, measure the weight
    of its proteins, and map its genetic structure. That's the virologic
    gold standard. And for some reason, HIV tests have none.

    In 1986, JAMA reported that: "no established standard exists for
    identifying HTLV-III [HIV] infection in asymptomatic people." (JAMA.
    July 18, 1986) 

    In 1987, the New England Journal of Medicine stated that "The meaning
    of positive tests will depend on the joint [ELISA/WB] false positive
    rate. Because we lack a gold standard, we do not know what that rate 
    is now. We cannot know what it will be in a large-scale screening
    program." ( Screening for HIV: can we afford the false positive
    rate?. NEJM. 1987)

    Skip ahead to 1996; JAMA again reported: "the diagnosis of HIV 
    infection in infants is particularly difficult because there is no
    reference or 'gold standard' test that determines unequivocally the
    true infection status of the patient. (JAMA. May, 1996)

    In 1997, Abbott laboratories, the world leader in HIV test production 
    stated: "At present there is no recognized standard for establishing
    the presence or absence of HIV antibody in human blood." (Abbot
    Laboratories HIV Elisa Test 1997)

    In 2000 the Journal AIDS reported that " 2.9% to 12.3%" of women in a
    study tested positive, "depending on the test used," but "since there
    is no established gold standard test, it is unclear which of these
    two proportions is the best estimate of the real prevalence rate. . . 
    " (AIDS, 14; 2000).

    If we had a virologic gold standard, HIV testing would be easy and
    accurate. You could spin the patient's blood in a centrifuge and find
    the particle. They don't do this, and they're saying privately, in 
    the medical journals, that they can't.

    That's why tests are determined through algorithms -- above or below
    sliding cut-offs; estimated from pregnant girls, then projected and
    redacted overnight.

    By repeating, again and again in the medical literature that there's
    no virologic gold standard, the world's top AIDS researchers are
    saying that what we're calling HIV isn't a single entity, but a 
    collection of cross-reactive proteins and unidentified genetic material.

    And we're suddenly a very long way from the public face of HIV.

    But the fact is, you don't need to test HIV positive to be an AIDS 
    patient. You don't even have to be sick.

    In 1993, the CDC added "Idiopathic CD4 Lymphocytopenia" to the AIDS
    category. What does it mean? Non-HIV AIDS.

    In 1993, the CDC also made "no-illness AIDS" a category. If you 
    tested positive, but weren't sick, you could be given an AIDS
    diagnosis. By 1997, the healthy AIDS group accounted for 2/3rds of
    all U.S. AIDS patients. (That's also the last year they reported
    those numbers, CDC Year End Addition, 1997). 

    In Africa, HIV status is irrelevant. Even if you test negative, you
    can be called an AIDS patient:

    From a study in Ghana: "Our attention is now focused on the
    considerably large number (59%) of the seronegative (HIV-negative) 
    group who were clinically diagnosed as having AIDS. All the patients
    had three major signs: weight loss, prolonged diarrhea, and chronic
    fever." (Lancet. October,1992)

    And from across Africa: "2215 out of 4383 ( 50.0%) African AIDS
    patients from Abidjan, Ivory Coast, Lusaka, Zambia, and Kinshasa,
    Zaire, were HIV-antibody negative." (British Medical Journal, 1991)

    Non-HIV AIDS, HIV-negative AIDS, No Virologic Gold standard -- terms 
    never seen in an HIV ad.

    But even if you do test "repeatedly" positive, the manufacturers say
    that "the risk of an asymptomatic [not sick] person developing AIDS
    or an AIDS-related condition is not known." (Abbott Laboratories HIV 
    Test, 1997)

    If commerce laws were applied equally, the "knowing is beautiful" ads
    for HIV testing would have to bear a disclaimer, just like cigarettes:

    "Warning: This test will not tell you if you're infected with a 
    virus. It may confirm that you are pregnant or have used drugs or
    alcohol, or that you've been vaccinated; that you have a cold, liver
    disease, arthritis, or are stressed, poor, hungry or tired. Or that
    you're African. It will not tell you if you're going to live or die; 
    in fact, we really don't know what testing positive, or negative,
    means at all."

    GNN contributor Liam Scheff is an investigative journalist and health 
    advocate who's been published in the New York Press, LA Citybeat and
    Boston's Weekly Dig. His reporting on cell-killing drugs like
    Nevirapine was recently featured in a BBC documentary.


  Michael Balter
  Contributing Correspondent, Science
  [log in to unmask]