How The Science Gets ‘Settled’

If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a thousand times: The science is settled! If you disagree, you are branded ‘anti-science’ or ‘conspiracy theorist’.

You, too, might have the impression that the science on vaccines (or other drugs) is ‘settled’, and that’s not by accident. Here’s how the drug industry achieves that impression…

Clinical Trials

Almost 75% of U.S. clinical trials in medicine are now funded by the pharmaceutical industry [1].

Naturally, the industry has a huge financial stake in the outcome of these clinical trials – a phase III clinical trial may enrol 1000 – 5000 people over many years, and cost hundreds of millions of dollars to complete. Average cost per trial participant is around $36,000 [2]. That’s a lot of incentive to make it worth your while!

Analysis shows that trials funded by the industry are 5x more likely to recommend the experimental drug as treatment of choice, regardless of whether the results justify it, or not [3].

Clinical trials proceed in phases:

Phase I: Usually small numbers of healthy volunteers 20-100, to ascertain safety and dosage.

Phase II: Usually involves up to several hundred people with the disease/condition, or fits the user profile, to ascertain efficacy and side-effects.

Phase III: Involves several hundred to several thousand volunteers with the disease/condition, to monitor efficacy and adverse reactions.

There a number of ways clinical trials can be manipulated to give the results you want – or the appearance of the results you want…

First, you choose the people who are most likely to give the results you want. If you are looking at the safety of a vaccine, you enrol those who are least likely to have adverse reactions, and exclude those with a history of seizures, recent fevers or illness, or any blood clotting disorder [4]. (In the real world, these very people people are often urged to get the vaccine.)

Other methods used to increase the legitimacy of your product include [5]:

i) Seeding trials: Where a drug company induces a doctor to prescribe a certain drug to their patients, in order to gain feedback on the product. These are usually scientifically meaningless, have no clear end-points, but they are large-scale so represent considerable sales for the company. The doctor usually gets paid to enter patients in the trial.

ii) Switching trials: This is a variant of the seeding trial. Doctors are recruited to switch their patients from their usual treatment, to a new treatment. Again, the drug companies know that this will often lead to long-term customers.

iii) post-marketing surveillance: This is yet another variant of the seeding and switching trials, although with more scientific justification, as they are often published, and can provide important data on adverse effects. Again, doctors are paid substantial sums, and the patients may believe they are getting new and ‘better’ treatments.

iv) Dosage: The dose can be manipulated in order to give the desired results. For example, a competitor drug may be given at less-than-optimal dosage, to make the studied drug look more effective. Or the competitor drug may be given at higher-than-optimal dosages, to make the studied drug look safer.

v) Economic evaluations: These can be easy to manipulate, because they are too complex for the average journal editor or reader to fully understand.

Medical Journals

Now, when you get the favourable ‘results’, you have to let the world know all about it! A major randomised trial with favourable results, published in a prestigious journal, is a major win for a drug company, and an essential step in creating a ‘blockbuster’ drug [6-7].

A 2010 review of six major medical journals found that studies funded by industry are cited more often than those funded by other sources – more than twice as often in some journals [8].

So, if the industry-funded studies are more likely to recommend the drug in question (regardless of actual results), and then those same studies are used as a foundation for other research, being cited far more often than independent studies…can you see how the drug industry is able to build up an impression of their products being ‘rigorously tested’ and ‘highly effective’?

 The industry has figured out another way to keep their products in the editorial pages – it’s called ‘ghost-writing’. The drug company pays a writer to create an article containing ‘key marketing messages’, which is then sent to a doctor, who agrees to have his/her name attributed to the work in exchange for payment, before it is submitted to medical publications. Studies suggest that anywhere from 8% to 75% of journal articles may be ghost-written [9].

Clearly, this might appeal to some doctors who want the prestige of being a published author, quite apart from the financial incentive. The pharmaceutical company has final control over the paper, and if a doctor is not compliant enough, they simply get no further projects [10-11].

In many cases, if not all, the ghost-writer and the honorary author have not even viewed the raw data, they have merely been supplied with a summary from the sponsor company [12]. The honorary author is usually chosen because of their credentials, and their ability to influence other prescribers [13].

Of course, the desired effect of all this published data is threefold: a) it gives the appearance that the drug is thoroughly researched and widely accepted, b) which boosts doctor and patient confidence, c) while simultaneously providing an edge over rival products.

But…peer review!

At the heart of the scientific process is the concept known as peer review – where an author’s work is subjected to the scrutiny of other experts in the same field, before being published. The public perception is that the peer review process acts like a stop-gap that upholds the integrity of the scientific process, and filters out errors or fraud, but does it really?

The British Medical Journal decided to test for themselves how reliable the peer-review process is, by inserting major errors into papers before sending to reviewers. Some reviewers didn’t pick up any of the errors, while most picked up only about a quarter. Nobody picked up all the errors [14 -15].

So far, the evidence suggests that the peer review process is ‘slow, expensive, ineffective, something of a lottery, prone to bias and abuse, and hopeless at spotting errors and fraud [16] – but of course, the average internet troll doesn’t know that, yet!

The New England Journal of Medicine has long been ‘the journal to beat’ [17], yet two former editors-in-chief left their role in the top job, and went on to publish books exposing the excessive influence of the drug industry [18-19].

Meta-Analysis

A meta-analysis looks at data from multiple studies, and is used as part of systematic review. Naturally, these are useful and important in the interpretation of data.

A systematic review of vaccine meta-analyses, found that the methodological quality of all 121 meta-analyses included in the review (100%), were unsatisfactory. “The most frequent limitations include non-comprehensive bibliographic research; bias in the selection of the studies; lack of quality assessment of individual studies; absence of evaluation of heterogeneity among studies and publication bias” [20].

So, 100% of the vaccine meta-analysis cherry-picked the studies they wanted to include, in order for the ‘systematic review’ to show the results they wanted…These are the same meta-analyses that are used to guide government policies and legislation, WHO guidelines, doctors opinion…

The Role of Media

In order to further spread the good news of your product, you also need to make some news headlines, via press releases. The media are usually fairly compliant – they want a catchy headline, and…after all, drug companies do help to fund their jobs, via billions of dollars in advertising revenue [21].

A review of health news and current affair items on free-to-air TV in Sydney, Australia, estimated that up to 42% may have ‘been triggered by press releases and other forms of publicity [22].

Advertising and press releases are not the only way the pharmaceutical industry can influence the media. Another avenue is through a situation known as an interlocking directorate. This occurs when the director of one company sits on the board of directors of another company.

Many of the major news corporations have directors who also sit on director boards for pharmaceutical companies – and these cosy relationships have been shown to effect how health news is portrayed [23].

According to research, ‘the media can play an important role in influencing both the demand and supply of medical treatments, regardless of evidence of effectiveness [24].

Media coverage can increase uptake of the seasonal influenza vaccine, especially if reported in a headline, that includes words such as ‘vaccine shortage’ [25]. (Creates a sense of urgency.)

The so-called ‘swine flu pandemic’, which turned out to be more panic than pandemic, featured experts and academics making media appearances, promoting the use of retroviral drugs. It was later found that those who promoted retroviral drugs, were 8 times more likely to have links to industry – via research grants, honorarium payments, advisory roles, employment, board membership, speaker’s fees, etc – than those who did not comment on their use [26].

Getting Your Product Approved

Of course, all your journal articles and press releases are kind of pointless if you can’t get your drug through the regulatory process. In the US, UK, Australia and Canada, the regulatory agencies are all funded by industry (user-pays system), rather than by government [27-30].

Congressional investigations and reports have made damning conclusions on both the CDC and FDA: The Committee’s investigation has determined that conflict of interest rules employed by the FDA and CDC have been weak, enforcement has been lax, and committee members with substantial ties to the pharmaceutical companies have been given waivers to participate in committee meetings” [31].

If that’s not enough, you also have the ‘revolving door’ between government and industry – former employees now hired by drug companies to liaise with their former work-mates in the regulatory system. Studies suggest that more than half of former assessors at the FDA move on to positions within the pharmaceutical industry [32] – obviously their ‘inside knowledge’ is extremely valuable to the drug companies.

Occasionally, the door swings in the opposite direction – pharma employees moving into government jobs. The current secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Alex Azar was formerly a pharmaceutical lobbyist, and president of the US division of pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly and Co [33]. In case you are not American, like myself, the HHS department guides the nation’s healthcare programs and policies, so…fairly influential.

Regulatory agents are not only funded by industry, as we have already noted, but they also rely on industry to conduct the trials, provide the safety data, and notify them of any issues that may arise post-licensure. The agencies themselves do not conduct clinical trials [34-37].

The Fate of Failed Clinical Trials

Now, what happens if, despite your best efforts, the clinical trials still didn’t give the results you wanted? You can still salvage your reputation by:

a) Just cut the trial short – to save money [38-40], or

b) Simply decide not to publish unfavourable trial results, even though doing so is considered to be scientific malpractice [41-42].

Research shows that less than half of government-funded clinical trial results are published in peer-reviewed medical journals within 30 months of trial completion [43].

One pharmaceutical company managed to suppress trial results for seven years, when they revealed that the drug in question was no more effective than cheaper generic formulations [44].

That, my friends, is a tiny glimpse into how science gets ‘settled’.

Any questions?

References

[1] Bodenheimer, T. 2000. Uneasy alliance: Clinical investigators and the pharmaceutical industry. New England Journal of Medicine 342:1539-1544.

[2] pHRma: Biopharmaceutical industry-sponsored clinical trials: impact on state economies, http://phrma-docs.phrma.org/sites/default/files/pdf/biopharmaceutical-industry-sponsored-clinical-trials-impact-on-state-economies.pdf. Accessed September, 2017.

[3] Als-Nielsen B, Chen W, Gluud C, Kjaergard LL. Association of Funding and Conclusions in Randomized Drug Trials A Reflection of Treatment Effect or Adverse Events?. JAMA. 2003;290(7):921–928.

[4] US National Library of Medicine: ClinicalTrials.gov. Hepatitis A vaccine, Inactivated and Measles, Mumps, Rubella and Varicella Virus Vaccine Live Safety Study, https://www.clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT00326183?term=vaccine&recrs=e&cond=varicella&age=0&phase=3&fund=2&rank=4. Accessed October, 2017.

[5] Smith R. Medical journals and pharmaceutical companies: uneasy bedfellows. BMJ : British Medical Journal. 2003;326(7400):1202-1205.

[6] Guyatt GH, Naylor D, Richardson WS, et al. What is the best evidence for making clinical decisions? JAMA. 2000 Dec 27; 284(24):3127-8.

[7] Smith R. Medical journals are an extension of the marketing arm of pharmaceutical companies. PLoS Med. 2005 May; 2(5):e138.

[8] Lundh A, Barbateskovic M, Hrobjartsson A, Gotzche pC. Conflicts of interest at medical journals: The influence of industry-supported randomised trials on journal impact factors and revenue-cohort study, pLOS One, 2010, 7(10): e1000354.

[9] Hill M. Ghosts in the Medical Machine, Philadelphia Inquirer, 20th September 2009.

[10] Petersen M. Madison Ave. Plays Growing Role in Drug Research. New York Times. 2002 November 22. Available at: www.nytimes.com/2002/11/22/business/22DRUG.html?pagewanted=5, Accessed January, 2019.] [Ngai S, Gold J. L, Gill

[11] Rochon P.A. Haunted Manuscripts: Ghost Authorship in the Medical Literature. Accountability in Research. 2005;12:p103–114.

[12] McHenry L. Of Sophists and Spin-Doctors: Industry-Sponsored Ghostwriting and the Crisis of Academic Medicine. Mens Sana Monographs. 2010;8(1):129-145.]

[13] Ibid.

[14] Godlee F, Gale CR, Martyn CN. Effect on the quality of peer review of blinding reviewers and asking them to sign their reports: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA. 1998 Jul 15; 280(3):237-40.

[15] Schroter S, Black N, Evans S, et al.Effects of training on quality of peer review: randomised controlled trial.BMJ. 2004 Mar 20; 328(7441):673.

[16] Smith R. The trouble with medical journals. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine. 2006;99(3):115-119.

[17] Smith R. Lapses at the New England Journal of Medicine. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine. 2006;99(8):380-382.

[18] Angell M. The Truth About Drug Companies: How They Deceive Us and What To Do About It. New York: Random House, 2005.

[19] Kassirer JP. On The Take: How Medicine’s Complicity With Big Business Can Endanger Your Health. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004.

[20] De Vito C, Manzoli L, Marzuillo C, et al. A systematic review evaluating the potential for bias and the methodological quality of meta-analyses in vaccinology, Vaccine, 2007, 25(52):8794-806.

[21] CBS News, Drug Ads: $5.2 billion annually – and rising, https://www.cbsnews.com/news/drug-ads-5-2-billion-annually-and-rising/. Accessed September, 2017.

[22] Chapman S, Holding SJ, Ellerm J, et al. The content and structure of Australian television reportage on health and medicine, 2005–2009: Parameters to guide health workers. Med J Aust, 2009, 191(11) 620–624.].

[23] Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting: Single-payer and interlocking directorates, The corporate ties between insurers and media companies, http://fair.org/extra/single-payer-and-interlocking-directorates/. Accessed February, 2017.

[24] Benelli E (2003) The role of media in steering public opinion on healthcare issues. Health Policy 63: 179–186.

[25] Yoo B-K, Holland ML, Bhattacharya J, Phelps CE, Szilagyi PG. Effects of Mass Media Coverage on Timing and Annual Receipt of Influenza Vaccination among Medicare Elderly. Health Services Research. 2010;45(5 Pt 1):1287-1309.

[26] Wise Jacqui. Academics who spoke out on swine flu risks were more likely to have industry links, study finds BMJ, 2013; 347 :f6758.

[27] Frontline. How independent is the FDA? http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/prescription/hazard/independent.html. Accessed October, 2017.

[28] House of Commons Health Committee. The Influence of the pharmaceutical industry: Fourth Report of Session 2004-2005.Published on 5 April 2005 by authority of the House of Commons London: The Stationery Office Limited.

[29] Government of Canada. Funding and Fees, https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/drugs-health-products/funding-fees.html. Accessed October, 2017.

[30] Productivity Commission. Submission To The Productivity Commission, re: Federal Government Cost Recovery, https://www.pc.gov.au/inquiries/completed/cost-recovery/submissions/medical_industry_association_of_australia_/sub012.pdf. Accessed October, 2017.

[31] FACA: Conflicts of Interest and Vaccine Development: Preserving the Integrity of the Process, Before the Government Reform Committee of the House of Representatives, 106th Congress, June 15, 2000.

[32] Bien, J., & Prasad, V. (2016). Future jobs of FDA’s haematology-oncology reviewers. BMJ (Online), 354, i5055.

[33] Brennan Z. Revolving Door Between Industry and FDA Continues to Spin, Regulatory Affairs Professionals Society, 6th September, 2018.

[34] US Food and Drug Administration. Clinical Trials: What patients need to know, https://www.fda.gov/forpatients/clinicaltrials/. Accessed October, 2017.

[35] Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency. Medicines and Medical Devices Regulation: What you need to know, http://www.mhra.gov.uk/home/groups/comms-ic/documents/websiteresources/con2031677.pdf. Accessed October, 2017.

[36] Government of Canada. Clinical trials and drug safety, https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/healthy-living/your-health/medical-information/clinical-trials-drug-safety.html. Accessed October, 2017.

[37] Therapeutic Goods Administration. TGA regulatory framework, https://www.tga.gov.au/tga-regulatory-framework. Accessed October, 2017.

[38] Psaty BM, Rennie D. Stopping medical research to save money. A broken pact with researchers and patients.  JAMA2003;289:2128-2131.

[39] Canadian Association of University Teachers: The Olivieri Report, https://www.caut.ca/docs/af-reports-indepedent-committees-of-inquiry/the-olivieri-report.pdf?sfvrsn=0. Accessed September, 2017.

[40] Lievre M, Menard J, Bruckert E.  et al.  Premature discontinuation of clinical trial for reasons not related to efficacy, safety, or feasibility.  BMJ.2001;322:603-605.

[41] Bodenheimer, T. 2000. Uneasy alliance: Clinical investigators and the pharmaceutical industry. New England Journal of Medicine 342:1539-1544.

[42] Chalmers I. Underreporting research is scientific misconduct.  JAMA.1990;263:1405-1408.

[43] Ross Joseph S, Tse Tony, Zarin Deborah A, Xu Hui, Zhou Lei, Krumholz Harlan M et al. Publication of NIH funded trials registered in ClinicalTrials.gov: cross sectional analysis BMJ 2012; 344 :d7292.

[44] Vogel G. Long-suppressed study finally sees light of day.  Science.1997;276:525-526. p

Shaken Babies, Vaccine Victims?

On December 4, 1998, Lorraine Harris took her 4-month-old son Patrick to have his vaccines. In the early hours of the following morning, she found him lifeless in his bed, and called an ambulance. He was rushed to hospital and placed on life-support, but sadly passed away a day later.

The post-mortem found marked brain swelling, some post-dural haemorrhaging and extensive retinal haemorrhaging (bleeding behind the eyes). The death was recorded as cerebral hypoxia – where the oxygen supply to the brain is cut off due to excessive swelling and intracranial haemorrhaging.

‘Shaken Baby Syndrome’, they decided…

Lorraine was charged with manslaughter and taken into custody. Her baby son was buried without her.

Despite being described as a caring, loving mother, no evidence of bruising or gripping, no history of fractures, Lorraine was convicted on September 7, 2000, and sentenced to three years imprisonment, on the basis of ‘expert evidence’. 

While on bail, awaiting her trial, Lorraine had become pregnant again and as she was starting to serve her sentence, gave birth to another baby boy. He was removed from her at one day old, given up for adoption and she was never allowed to see him again. Her partner left her, while serving her sentence [1].

One of the experts whose report helped to convict Lorraine Harris was Dr. Waney Squier, one of only two consultant paediatric neuropathologists in England, with more than three decades of experience.

After Lorraine’s conviction however, Dr. Squier began to have a change of heart, due to research by Dr. Jennien Geddes, another neuropathologist. Dr Geddes had become troubled by the number of cases where there was no sign of physical damage to the child’s body [2 – 3].

Dr. Squier then “began to conduct her own investigations and concluded that shaking as a cause of death in babies could ‘virtually be excluded’ unless there was also evidence of body trauma, such as serious damage to the neck” [4].

Dr. Squier later appeared as expert witness at Lorraine Harris’ appeal – but this time for the defence.

Lorraine’s conviction was overturned, and her name restored, but her life would never be the same again. Despite the clear miscarriage of justice, her application for compensation was denied. She was also denied access to the baby boy who was adopted out.

The story doesn’t end there for Dr. Waney Squier…

In 2010, after acting as expert witness in several successful appeals, Dr. Squier was reported to the General Medical Council, by police, for ‘deliberately misleading’ the courts on Shaken Baby Syndrome. After a long inquiry, she was struck off the medical register. She successfully appealed through the High Court and was reinstated, but was banned from giving evidence in SBS cases for three years [5].

She says “We need a public inquiry into how this syndrome is still being used to condemn people in the family and criminal courts. They are being accused on the basis of it, yet it is only an hypothesis with no scientific evidence to support it” [6].

Sadly, there are more heart-breaking stories like this one…

In 1999, Sally Clark, a solicitor, was sentenced to life imprisonment for killing her two baby sons [7].

First, her 12-week-old son Christopher in 1996. His death was originally thought to be caused by a ‘lung infection’, but then…

In 1998, she found her 8-week-old son, Harry, dead. He had received vaccines just five hours earlier [8]. The second death raised the suspicion of authorities.

She was charged, and convicted, for their murders, based on ‘expert’ witnesses, one of which claimed that the chances of two babies dying from the one family were ‘1 in 73 million’. He also assured the jury that the vaccine would not be the cause of death [9].

After serving three years of her sentence, during which time she was assaulted and detested by fellow inmates as a ‘baby killer’, her conviction was overturned based on the discovery of medical evidence showing staph infection in baby Harry’s spinal fluid, that was hidden during her trial.

Although she was released, she never did recover from the trauma, and in 2007, she was found dead in her home, aged 42 years [10].

An estimated 250 cases of ‘Shaken Baby Syndrome’ come before the family and criminal courts every year, in Great Britain alone [11].

In the US, there are an estimated 1000 – 3000 cases of ‘shaken baby syndrome’ each year, with approximately one-quarter of those babies dying, and survivors often have life-long conditions and brain injury [12].

How many of these cases are violent monsters…and how many are loving parents, simply following guidelines to vaccinate their children? While-ever authorities continue to ignore vaccine damage, we will never know.

The diagnosis of Shaken Baby Syndrome is based on the following triad of symptoms: subdural haemorrhage (bleeding on the brain), retinal bleeding (bleeding behind the eyes), and hypoxaemic encephalopathy (lack of oxygen to the brain). One would logically assume that neck injuries would be the first sign of violent shaking – after all, we are rightfully warned that an infant’s neck is very weak and needs to be supported at all times.

Research shows that cases of ‘SBS’ peak at around 6-8 weeks of age…when babies apparently cry the most (also when most babies receive up to eight vaccines, all at once) [13].

Some authorities have called for the consideration of homicide in any case of sudden death in a child [14].

And yet, a systematic review published in 2017 concluded that nearly all studies in the area of SBS were of very low quality, with a high risk of bias, and that, therefore, “there is insufficient scientific evidence on which to assess the diagnostic accuracy of the triad in identifying traumatic shaking” [15].

More than 50 years ago, an Australian doctor, Dr. Archie Kalokerinos discovered that the symptoms of ‘Shaken Baby Syndrome’ are perfectly identical to scurvy, or Vitamin C deficiency. He was able to halt the epidemic of SIDS and ‘Shaken Baby’ deaths in the Aboriginal community he worked in, via the use of intravenous Vitamin C [16].

In his book “Shaken Baby Syndrome: An Abusive Diagnosis”, he writes “Crucially for babies, the innate immune system is dependent on Vitamin C, for without that, the neutrophils, lymphocytes, and phagocytes which process toxins in the body come to a halt“.

And “While the Vitamin C recommended daily allowance might be sufficient to avoid a pre-morbid state called “scurvy’, it bears no relationship to the amounts required for the body to effectively manage essential biochemical processes brought into play after vaccines, toxin exposure, malnutrition, illness or stress [17].

He also details how Vitamin C deficiency, or a malfunction in ascorbate transporters can lead to spontaneous fractures in the bones of small children, and healing deposits – which appear to be old fractures that have healed over. (Another sign that is held up as ‘proof’ of abuse.)

Parental smoking is accepted as a strong risk factor for sudden death in infants. Smoking depletes the body of Vitamin C [18]. If the mother smoked during pregnancy or breastfeeding, the child is likely to be depleted of this vitamin, so essential for growth and cellular function.

Also, if a child is raised in a home where she is subjected to second-hand smoke, even in small amounts, she is at increased risk of Vitamin C deficiency [19].  

Vitamin C – or ascorbic acid – also has a protective effect against heavy metals [20].  

Could it be that Vitamin C-deficient infants are simply overwhelmed by the aluminium, and other ingredients, found in vaccines? Or perhaps overwhelmed by the body’s histamine response, in the absence of sufficient ascorbic acid to counteract it [21]?

More than 70yrs ago, it was shown that injections are three times more likely to cause death, if the recipient had been on a Vitamin C-deficient diet for 15 days beforehand [22].

References:

[1] The Justice Gap. Shaken Baby Syndrome and the fight for justice, http://thejusticegap.com/2012/08/shaken-baby-syndrome-and-the-fight-for-justice/. Accessed October, 2017.

[2] Reid S. The Shaken Baby Martyr: Top brain doctor who was struck off for controversial claims speaks out on how jailed parents could be innocent, The Daily Mail, December 10, 2016.

[3] Dyer O. Brain haemorrhage in babies may not indicate violent abuse. BMJ : British Medical Journal. 2003;326(7390):616.

[4] Reid S. The Shaken Baby Martyr: Top brain doctor who was struck off for controversial claims speaks out on how jailed parents could be innocent, The Daily Mail, December 10, 2016.

[5] Ibid

[6] Ibid

[7] Innocent.org. The Tragedy of Sally Clark 1965-2007, https://innocent.org.uk/2016/04/30/the-tragedy-of-sally-clark-1965-2007/. Accessed October, 2017.

[8] Author Unknown. Was Sally Clark’s child killed by a vaccine? The Spectator Archive, 19 May, 2007, pp 20

[9] Innocent.org. The Tragedy of Sally Clark 1965-2007, https://innocent.org.uk/2016/04/30/the-tragedy-of-sally-clark-1965-2007/. Accessed October, 2017.

[10] Ibid

[11] Reid S. The Shaken Baby Martyr: Top brain doctor who was struck off for controversial claims speaks out on how jailed parents could be innocent, The Daily Mail, December 10, 2016.

[12] [New York State, Department of Health, Shaken Baby Syndrome – Facts and Figures, https://www.health.ny.gov/prevention/injury_prevention/shaken_baby_syndrome/sbs_fact_sheet.htm, Accessed January, 2019.

[13] Joyce T, Huecker MR. Pediatric Abusive Head Trauma (Shaken Baby Syndrome). In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island, Florida, StatPearls Publishing; 2018.

[14] Green MA. A practical approach to suspicious death in infancy–a personal view. J Clin Pathol. 1998 Aug; 51(8):561-3.

[15] Lynøe N, Elinder G, Hallberg B, Rosén M, Sundgren P, Eriksson A. Insufficient evidence for ‘shaken baby syndrome’ – a systematic review, Acta Paediatr. 2017, 106(7):1021-1027.

[16] Kalokerinos A. SBS: An Abusive Diagnosis, 2008, available at https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/bb7e/8347403638ac98691c58f32f40ea3f4ba678.pdf. Accessed January, 2019.

[17] Ibid

[18] Schectman G, Byrd JC, Gruchow HW. The influence of smoking on vitamin C status in adults. American Journal of Public Health. 1989;79(2):158-162.

[19] Preston AM, Rodriguez C, Rivera CE, Sahai H. Influence of environmental tobacco smoke on Vitamin C status in children, Am J Clin Nutrition, 2003, 77 1):167-172.

[20] Yousef MI, El-Morsy AMA, Hassan MS. Aluminum-induced deterioration in reproductive performance and seminal plasma biochemistry of male rabbits: protective role of ascorbic acid, Toxicology, 2005, 215 1-2):97-107.

[21] Clemetson CAB. Vaccinations, innoculations and ascorbic acid, J Orthomol Med, 1999, Vol 14, 3rd Quarter.

[22] Parrot JL, Richet G: Accroissement de la sensabilité a histamine chez le cobaye soumís a un Régime scorbutogène. CR Soc Biol, 1945;

15 Reasons Why Millions of People Once Died From ‘Infectious’ Disease

1. OVERCROWDING

During the 19th century, the population of London swelled by more than six-fold, from 1 million to more than 6 million inhabitants, to become the largest city in the world [1].

All across the western world, as the Industrial Revolution took hold, vast numbers of rural folk moved into towns and cities. For example, in 1750, only 15% of the population lived in towns, but by 1880, a massive 80% of the population were urban dwellers [2]. The Industrial revolution, and city living, promised a better life but, for many, it became an unimaginable nightmare.

With housing in short supply, unscrupulous landlords turned buildings into tenements, and leased every spare inch to desperate families – dingy damp cellars, fire-trap attics and under-stair storage rooms, many without any ventilation or light. Just imagine the damp, mouldy air that these people were constantly breathing – it’s hardly a wonder that tuberculosis and pneumonia were the biggest killers, accounting for one-fifth of all deaths [3].

Disease and death were distressingly close in these crowded quarters: “…the report of a health officer for Darlington in the 1850’s found six children, aged between 2 and 17, suffering from smallpox in a one-roomed dwelling shared with their parents, and elder brother and an uncle. They all slept together on rags on the floor, with no bed. Millions of similar cases could be cited, with conditions getting even worse as disease victims died and their corpses remained rotting among families in single-roomed accommodations for days, as the family scraped together pennies to bury them” [5].

2. LACK OF PLUMBING

Entire streets had to share one outdoor toilet, which was usually in foul condition – cleaning supplies were expensive, and flies hung around in droves (and then made their way through open windows to nearby kitchens etc), and of course, diarrhoea was ever-present!

Sewerage drained into waterways via open channels in the streets and lanes, or simply lay stagnant in stinking cesspools of filth.

Henry Mayhew was an investigative journalist who, in 1849, described a London street with a ditch running down it, that contained the only drinking water available to residents. He said it was ‘the colour of strong green tea’, and ‘more like watery mud than muddy water’.

‘As we gazed in horror at it, we saw drains and sewers emptying their filthy contents into it; we saw a whole tier of doorless privies (toilets) in the open road, common to men and women built over it; we heard bucket after bucket of filth splash into it’ [6].

3. CONTAMINATED DRINKING WATER

With no environmental laws in place, raw sewage poured into drinking water supplies, as did run-off and toxic waste from factories and animal slaughterhouses.

 “The spill-off from the slaughter-houses and the glue factories, the chemicals of the commercial manufacturers, and all of Chicago’s raw sewage had begun to contaminate the drinking water” [7].

In London, the River Thames, which was the source of drinking water for many Londoners, became a stinking flow of excrement and filth, as human, animal and industrial waste was dumped into it. “In the heatwave of 1858, the stagnating open sewer outside Westminster’s windows fermented and boiled under the scorching sun” [8].

During a cholera epidemic in London, in 1854, Dr John Snow realized that the only people who seemed to be completely unaffected were the workers at a local brewery – they were drinking beer instead of water [9]! The discovery that disease could be spread via water was revolutionary, and paved the way for massive sanitary reforms

4. CONTAMINATED FOOD SUPPLY

With slow, unreliable transport, and no refrigeration, food was often past its use-by date. Diseased and rotting meat was made into sausages and ham. ‘Pigs are largely fed upon diseased meat which is too far gone, even for the sausage maker, and this is saying a great deal; and as a universal rule, diseased pigs are pickled and cured for ham, bacon etc’ [10].

Milking cows were often fed on ‘whisky slops’ and other rotting, cheap food, and therefore became diseased. ‘New York’s milk supply was also largely a by-product of the local distilleries, and the milk dealers were charged with the serious offense of murdering annually eight thousand children’ [11].

Before pasteurization, milk was treated with formaldehyde to prevent souring [12].

‘Fresh’ produce, when it was available, was not so fresh after all – often slimy, putrid and unfit for human consumption [13].

5. ABSENT MOTHERS

During the 19th century, countless mothers died during, or soon after, childbirth.

There were a number of reasons for this:

a) Rickets, and malnutrition in general, was rife,

b) Doctors, who had impinged into the female-only world of childbirth, took offense at the idea they had dirty hands, and refused to wash them [14],

c) chloroform and forceps were used unnecessarily, even in uncomplicated labours [15]

If the baby survived past infancy, they could generally look forward to a life of malnutrition, hard labor and improper care, often performed by older siblings.

During the Industrial Revolution, many mothers worked long hours in factories, leaving their young children in the care of hired ‘nurse-girls’, who were little more than children themselves, between 8-12yrs of age [16].

Many children ended up living on the streets, driven to stealing and pilfering in order to survive. ‘In 1848 Lord Ashley referred to more than thirty thousand ‘naked, filthy, roaming lawless and deserted children, in and around the metropolis‘ [17].

6. CHILD LABOUR & HARD LABOUR

With the Industrial Revolution in full swing, and labour in short supply, children as young as three and four years old were put to work in sweatshops and factories. Many of the jobs involved long hours, working in dangerous conditions, such as around heavy machinery or working near furnaces [18].

Children were forced to do back-breaking work in the most appalling conditions: ‘Children began their life in the coal-mines at five, six or seven years of age. Girls and women worked like boys; they were less than half-clothed, and worked alongside men who were stark naked. There were from twelve to fourteen working hours in the twenty-four, and these were often at night…A common form of labour consisted of drawing on hands and knees over the inequalities of a passageway not more than two feet, or twenty-eight inches high a car or tub filled with three or four hundred weight of coal, attached by a chain, and hooked to a leather band around the waist’ [19].

Children were sometimes crushed or ground to death, or had limbs severed, in some of the more dangerous industries, such as underground mining [20]

Basically, millions of children had no childhood, but a monotonous, depressing existence.

‘Children had not a moment free, save to snatch a hasty meal, or sleep as best they could. From earliest youth they worked to a point of extreme exhaustion, without open air exercise, or any enjoyment whatever, but grew up, if they survived at all, weak, bloodless, miserable, and in many cases deformed cripples, and victims of almost every disease’ [18].

And to make matters worse, many children were constantly exposed to poisons, such as arsenic, lead and mercury, which were being widely used in industries, such as silk and cotton spinning [21].

Adulthood didn’t bring much change – hard labour, often for 12-16 hours per day. The terrible conditions and over-work, along with poor diet, aged people quickly: “…from the 1830’s photographs show working people looking old by their thirties and forties, as poor nutrition, illness, bad living conditions and gross overwork took their toll’ [22].

7. POLLUTED AIR

Factories spewed soot and waste into the air, unchecked and unregulated. Cities were covered in a layer of grease and grime [23].

It’s no surprise that lung and chest complaints were rife. And then there was the ever-present stench of open sewage, rubbish, animal dung etc.

Refuse, including the rotting corpses of dogs and horses, littered city streets. In 1858, the stench from sewage and other rot was so putrid that the British House of Commons was forced to suspend its sessions’ [23].

That episode became known as ‘The Great Stink’, and in 1952, atmospheric conditions coupled with coal-fire burning, led to the event now known as ‘The Great Smog” – which killed thousands within the space of weeks [24].

Even today, an estimated 9000 people die prematurely each year in London alone, due to air pollution [25]. Yet the levels of pollution in Victorian times were up to 50x worse than they are today [26] – how many lives must have been cut short because of the foul air poisoning their lungs?

8. LACK OF BREASTFEEDING

Infant formula was first patented and marketed in 1865, consisting of cow’s milk, wheat and malt flour, and potassium bicarbonate – and regarded as ‘perfect infant food’ [27].

Over the next 100 years, breastfeeding rates dropped to just 25% [28], as social attitudes disdained the practice as being only for the uneducated, and those who could not afford infant formula [29].

Not only did millions of babies miss out on the nurturing of their mother’s breast, but their formula was poor quality, and often made with contaminated water in unsterile bottles, and milk quickly spoiled during warm weather without refrigeration.

It’s hardly a wonder that so many babies succumbed to diarrheal infections, such as typhoid fever.

9. IMPROPER GARBAGE DISPOSAL

Without a proper disposal system in place, alleys, courtyards, and streets became littered with rubbish and waste – sometimes knee-high, which was not only offensive-smelling, but a great attraction for all kinds of scavengers – rats, pigs, dogs, cockroaches and swarms of flies [30].

10. ANIMALS

Because horses and donkeys were used to transport goods, they also had to be housed in overcrowded cities, often in close quarters to humans, since space was at a premium. Rotting carcases were left to decompose where they lay.

By late 19th century, 300,000 horses were being used in London, creating 1000 tonnes of dung per day [31].

Pigs roamed freely in the streets, ferreting amongst the rubbish – some towns recorded more resident pigs than people.

Animal slaughterhouses were located amongst high-density tenement housing – animals were constantly slaughtered in full view of the surrounding residents, and the sounds and smell of death were constantly in the air [32].

11. LACK OF SUNLIGHT

Due to the burning of coal, and wood fires, cities were blanketed in a thick, black smog that covered everything in grime.

The murk was so dense that countless accidents occurred, including horses and carts running into shop-fronts, or over pedestrians, or into each other [33].

Vitamin D deficiency was widespread, and in the late 1800’s, studies concluded that up to 90% of children were suffering from rickets [34]. In young girls, this often led to deformed hips, and later on, problems in childbirth.

12. MALNUTRITION

Millions of families subsisted on the cheapest food possible, and many lived on the brink of starvation. Malnutrition was rife, with so little fresh fruits and vegetables in the diet.

Scurvy (Vitamin C deficiency) claimed an estimated 10,000 men during the California Gold Rush in the mid-1800’s [35]. Even in those who did not have overt signs of scurvy, a state of mild deficiency must have been prevalent, leading to weakened immunity to disease and infection.

13. BAD MEDICINE

If you thought blood-letting and leeches were bad, how about an injection of arsenic – proudly brought to you by Merck and Co [36]? Or a gargle with mercury – where’s the harm [37]?

And if you have smallpox, we’ll dab your sores with corrosives [38].

Treatment for syphilis included mercury rubs, bismuth injections, and arsenic injections – some patients endured more than 100 such injections [36].

It’s highly possible that the medical ‘treatments’ killed more people than the diseases they were intended to treat.

Hospitals were known to be breeding-grounds of disease, and over-run by rats, that were so numerous and hungry, they ate patients [39].

14. LACK OF BASIC CLEANLINESS

With less than 2% of the urban population with running water to their homes [40], and soap/detergents viewed as luxuries, washing of hands, clothes, plates and utensils had to be done with dirty, contaminated water – or not at all.

Note that items such as nappies and sanitary ‘rags’ also had to be washed – no ‘disposables’ in those days!

15. MENTAL AND EMOTIONAL STRESS

We now know that stress and fear take a huge toll on the body, resulting in immune system malfunction [41]. Can you imagine the mental anguish of being surrounded by abject poverty, and seeing no way of escape for yourself or your children? Or the panic of watching everybody you love succumb to a dreaded disease, and not having the knowledge or means to protect yourself?

Fear and hysteria ran high during disease outbreaks – during a cholera epidemic in the US in 1849 “thousands fled panic-stricken before the scourge…The streets were empty, except for the doctors rushing from victim to victim, and the coffin makers and undertakers following closely on their heels” [42].

Not to mention the stress of toiling for long hours in monotonous or dangerous work, with hardly a piece of dry bread to fill your hungry stomach?

Given the poor living conditions that millions suffered, it was hardly a wonder that average life expectancy was, tragically, just 15 or 16 years among the working class [43].

References:

[1] GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, London GovOf through time | Population Statistics | Total Population, A Vision of Britain through Time.

[2] [Porter R. The Greatest Benefit to Mankind, Harper Collins, New York, 1997]

[3] Publications of the American Statistical Association, Volume 9, Nos 65-72, 1904-1905, pp 260-261.

[4] Chesney K. The Victorian Underworld, Penguin Books, 1972.

[5] Porter D, Health, Civilization and the State – A History of Public Health From Ancient to Modern Times, Routledge, Oxfordshire, England, 1999.

[6] Mayhew H. A Visit To The Cholera Districts of Bermondsey, The Morning Chronicle, 24th September, 1849.]

[7] Byrne J, My Chicago, Northwestern University Press, Evanston, Illinois, 1992.

[8] Mann E, Story of Cities #14: London’s Great Stink heralds a wonder of the modern world, The Guardian, 4th April, 2016, https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2016/apr/04/story-cities-14-london-great-stink-river-thames-joseph-bazalgette-sewage-system. Accessed January, 2019.

[9] Radeska T, The 1854 cholera outbreak of Broad Street, Everyone got sick except those who drank beer instead of water, Vintage News, 26th September, 2016, https://www.thevintagenews.com/2016/09/26/1854-cholera-outbreak-broad-street-everyone-got-sick-except-drank-beer-instead-water, Accessed January, 2019.

[10] The British and Foreign Medico-Chirurgical Review, Quarterly Journal of Practical Medicine and Surgery, Volume XXXV, John Churchill and Sons, London, Jan-Apr 1865, pp 32-33.

[11] Cole AC, The Irrepressible Conflict 1850-1865: A History of American Life, Volume VII, Macmillan, New York, 1934, p 81.

[12] Formaldehyde and Milk, JAMA. 1900; XXXIV(23):1496.

[13] Report of the Council of Hygiene and Public Health of the Citizen’s Association of New York, 1865, p 59.

[14] Wertz RW, Wertz DC, Lying In: A History of Childbirth in America, Yale University Press, 1989, p 122.

[15] Loudon I, Maternal Mortality in the Past and its Relevance to Developing Countries Today, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2000, 72:241S-246S.

[16] Newman G, Infant Mortality: A Continuing Social Problem, Methueun and Co, London, 1906, p 95.

[17] Horn P. The Victorian Town Child, New York University Press, 1997.

[18] Willoughby WF, de Graffenried C, Child Labor, American Economic Association, Guggenheimer, Weil and Co, Baltimore, 1890, p 16.

[19] Cheyney EP. An Introduction to the Industrial and Social History of England, Macmillan, New York, 1920, pp 243-244.

[20] Lovejoy OR, Child Labor in the Coal Mines, Child Labor – A Menace to Industry, Education and Good Citizenship, Academy of Political and Social Science, 1906, p 38.

[21] The American Journal of Nursing, 1903, 3(8):664.

[22] Mearns A, Preston WC. The Bitter Cry of Outcast London: An Inquiry Into the Condition of the Abject Poor, James Clarke and Co, London, 1883.

[23] Noble TFX, Straus B, Osheim DJ, Neuschel KB, Accampo AE, Roberts DD, Choen WB. Western Civikization: Beyond Boundaries, Volume II, 6th Edition, Wadsworth, Boston, Massachesetts.

[24] Carrington D, The truth about London’s air pollution, The Guardian, 5th February, 2016, https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/feb/05/the-truth-about-londons-air-pollution. Accessed January, 2019.

[25] Vaughan A, Nearly 9500 die every year in London because of air pollution, The Guardian, 15th July, 2015, https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/jul/15/nearly-9500-people-die-each-year-in-london-because-of-air-pollution-study. Accessed January, 2019.

[26] UK Air, What are the main trends in particulate matter in the UK? Chapter 7, https://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&ved=2ahUKEwiJo6G8r9ffAhXJP3AKHf4dCesQFjAAegQICxAC&url=https%3A%2F%2Fuk-air.defra.gov.uk%2Fassets%2Fdocuments%2Freports%2Faqeg%2Fch7.pdf&usg=AOvVaw3Qd9bOWTstyEmCOpcmeLA6, Accessed January, 2019.

[27] Stevens EE, Patrick TE, Pickler R. A history of infant feeding. J Perinat Educ. 2009;18(2):32-9.

[28] Hirschman C, Butler M. Trends and differentials in breast feeding: an update, Demography, 1981, 18:39-54.

[29] Riordan J; Countryman BA. “Basics of breastfeeding. Part I: Infant feeding patterns past and present.”, JOGN Nurs 1980., 9 (4): 207–210.

[30] Oatman-Stanford H, A Filthy History: When New-Yorkers Lived Knee Deep in Trash, Collector’s Weekly, https://www.collectorsweekly.com/articles/when-new-yorkers-lived-knee-deep-in-trash/. Accessed Januray, 2019.

[31] Jackson L. Dirty Old London: The Victorian Fight Against Filth, Yale University Press, 2014.

[32] Annual Report of the Metropolitan Board of Health, 1866, Westcott and Co’s Printing House, New York, 1987.

[33] Heggie V, Over 200yrs of deadly London air: smogs, fogs and pea soupers, The Guardian, 9th December, 2016, https://www.theguardian.com/science/the-h-word/2016/dec/09/pollution-air-london-smogs-fogs-pea-soupers. Accessed January, 2019.

[34] Holick MF. Resurrection of vitamin D deficiency and rickets. J Clin Invest. 2006;116(8):2062-72.

[35] Lorenz AJ, Scurvy in the Gold Rush.” Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences, 1957, 12(4):473–510.

[36] Cormia FE, Tryparsamide in the treatment of Syphilis of the central nervous system, British Journal of Venereal Diseases, 1934, 10:99-116.

[37] Swediaur F, Practical observations on the more obstinate and inveterate venereal complaints, J Johnson and C Elliott, London, 1784.

[38] Blumgarten AS. A Text Book of Medicine – For Students in Schools of Nursing, 1937.

[39] Vincent’s Semi-Annual United States Register, 1860, p346.

[40] Greene VW, Personal Hygiene and Life Expectancy Improvements Since 1850: Historic and Epidemiologic Associations, American Journal of Infection Control, August 2001, p 205.

[41] Rosen J, The Effects of Chronic Fear on a Person’s Health, Neuroscience Education Institute (NEI), 2017 Conference, https://www.ajmc.com/conferences/nei-2017/the-effects-of-chronic-fear-on-a-persons-health, Accessed January, 2019.

[42] Cole AC, The Irrepressible Conflict 1850-1865: A History of American Life, Volume VII, Macmillan, New York, 1934, p 81.

[43] Greene VW, Personal Hygiene and Life Expectancy Improvements Since 1850: Historic and Epidemiologic Associations, American Journal of Infection Control, August 2001, p 205.

200+ Future Vaccines: Here’s A Glimpse of What to Expect

In 2013, the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) proudly announced that American biopharmaceutical companies had 271 new vaccines in development [1].

“The 271 vaccines in development span a wide array of diseases, and employ exciting new scientific strategies and technologies. These potential vaccines – all in human clinical trials or under review by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) – include 137 for infectious diseases, 99 for cancer, 15 for allergies and 10 for neurological disorders”

Here’s a brief glimpse at what we can expect:

  1. A genetically-engineered nasal vaccine for obesity [2].
  2. A vaccine for malaria, using genetically-engineered parasites [3].
  3. A vaccine made from mouse cancer cells, for use in patients with colorectal cancer [4].
  4. A chimeric virus (two viruses genetically engineered/combined into one virus) vaccine for Japanese encephalitis [5].
  5. A genetically-engineered vaccine for Pseudomonas aeruginosa – apparently it is a major cause of hospital-acquired infections [6]. Note that they tested it on ventilated patients in an intensive care unit – as if they didn’t already have enough to deal with! In addition, vaccination made no difference whatsoever to rates of infection…but that didn’t stop them recommending further testing.
  6. A vaccine for Vigoo enterovirus 71…never heard of it, nevertheless, I’m sure they’ll be able to create a market for it [7].
  7. Plant-based oral vaccines for Type-1 diabetes [8].
  8. A vaccine made from genetically-engineered Listeria, for early-stage pancreatic cancer [9].
  9. Genetically-engineered papaya with an inbuilt vaccine for Taenia solium or T. crassiceps – a type of tapeworm found in pigs and humans [10].
  10. A vaccine for stress [11].

References:

[1] Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), Medicines in development: Vaccines, http://phrma.org/press-release/medicines-in-development-vaccines. Accessed February, 2017.

[2] Azegami T, Yuki Y, Sawada S, et al. Nano-gel based nasal ghrelin vaccine prevents obesity, Mucosal Immunol, 2017, epub ahead of print.

[3] Kublin JG, Mikolajczak SA, Sack BK, et al. Complete attenuation of genetically engineered plasmodium falciparum sporozoites in human subjects, Sci Transl Med, 2017, 9(371).

[4] Seledtsova GV, Shishkov GV, Kaschenko EA, Seledtsov VI. Xenogeneic cell-based vaccine therapy for colorectal cancer: safety, association of clinical effects with vaccine-induced immune responses, Biomed Pharmac, 2016, 83: 1247-1252.

[5] Kosalaraksa P, Watanaveeradej V, Pancharoen C, et al. Long-term immunogenicity of a single dose of japanese encephalitis chimeric virus vaccine in toddlers and booster response 5 years after primary immunization, Pediatry Infect Dis J, 2016, epub ahead of print.

[6] Rello J, Krenn CG, Locker G, et al. A randomized, placebo-controlled phase II study of a pseudomonas vaccine in ventilated ICU patients, Crit Care, 2017, 21(1): 22.

[7] Wei M, Meng F, Wang S, et al. 2-year efficacy, immunogenicity, and safety of Vigoo enterovirus 71 vaccine in healthy chinese children: a randomized, open-label study, J Infect Dis, 2017, 215(1): 56-63.

[8] Posgai AL, Wasserfall CH, Kwon KC, et al. Plant-based vaccines for oral delivery of type-1 diabetes-related auto-antigens: evaluating oral tolerance mechanisms and disease prevention in NOD mice, Sci Rep, 2017, 7: 42372.

[9] Keenan BP, Saenger Y, Kafrouni MI, et al. A listeria vaccine and depletion of T-regulatory cells activate immunity against early stage pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasms and prolong survival of mice, Gastroenterology, 2014, 146(7): 1784-1794.

[10] Fragoso C, Hernandez M, Cervantes-Torres J, et al. Transgenic papaya: a useful platform for oral vaccines, Planta, 2017, epub ahead of print.

[11] Elliot D. Preventing Mental Illness with a Stress Vaccine, The Atlantic, Nov 26, 2016.

7 Reasons Why Antibodies Can’t Possibly Provide Immunity

There is a massive vaccine industry that rakes in billions in profits, based on the belief that if you have antibodies, you are ‘protected’. Here’s 7 reasons why that belief needs a re-think…

ONE.

There are numerous cases in the scientific literature, of people succumbing to illness, even though they had high antibody counts [1-3]. In fact, some of those had antibody titres 100x higher than what is considered sufficient to provide ‘immunity’. On the other hand, there are people with little to no antibody counts (and supposedly susceptible) passing through disease outbreaks completely untouched [4].

Actually, the discovery that antibodies are not responsible for immunity was made more than 80 years ago, by immunologist Dr. Merrill Chase, and his discovery was largely ignored by mainstream medicine, despite a long and illustrious career, and publishing more than 150 research papers [5].

TWO.

According to vaccine logic, the more antibodies you have, the better, but in a NORMALLY functioning immune system, antibody production is tightly restricted (for good reason – more on that later). It’s now common knowledge that Vitamin D is necessary for a healthy immune system…but did you know Vitamin D LIMITS antibody production [6]? It begs the question why, if antibodies really are as vital as we have been led to believe…

 THREE.

The presence of prior antibodies has been found to ENHANCE some diseases. It’s called ‘antibody-dependant enhancement’ and, so far, it has been demonstrated to enhance dengue fever, zika virus, HIV, Ebola, and others [7-12].

FOUR

Antibodies are created in the body as a last resort. It only occurs AFTER the cells have become infected. Remember the selling point of vaccines – about having a ‘primed’ immune system, so that antibodies could respond faster? Well, technically that’s true, but they neglected to mention that, even in a ‘primed’ immune system, antibodies are STILL not called into action, until after infection occurs [13]. Therefore, it’s a biological impossibility for antibodies to prevent infection, even in a ‘primed’ immune system.

FIVE.

By now, you may be wondering why the human body is designed to limit, restrict or delay antibody production. There’s a good reason for this – because antibodies are highly inflammatory and uncomfortable. Those unpleasant symptoms that you experience when ‘sick’ are not symptoms of disease, they are the result of antibodies. Antibodies place a large burden on the body’s excretory systems and, if not excreted in a timely manner, they conglomerate and form ‘antibody complexes’, which are rather large and tend to get stuck in the soft tissues and joints, causing inflammation and tissue damage [14]. If you get ‘arthritis’ after a vaccine or illness, now you know why! Antibodies!

SIX.

True immunity requires a robust innate immune system (also known as Th1 immunity). This is the very first line of defence. As already mentioned, vaccines target antibody production, which is part of the humoral immune system (also known as Th2 immunity) – and the last function called into play by the immune system.

We can look upon these two arms of the immune system (innate and humoral) as being antagonistic – when one is dominant, the other is suppressed. So, a dominant antibody response (caused/exacerbated by repeat vaccinations), means that the innate immune system (first line of defence) is suppressed, leaving you more vulnerable to infection [15].

It should be noted here, that the disease known as ‘AIDS’ is characterised by this very same thing – high antibody counts, and poor function of the innate immune system [16]

Also of note – studies have shown that cancer and autism patients have this particular immune imbalance – high antibody counts and suppressed innate immunity [17-20].

SEVEN.

Antibodies are extracellular, meaning that they are active outside the cells, but cannot actually enter cells…although scientists are trying to genetically engineer antibodies that will do just that [21].

Now, this is quite a conundrum, because antibodies are not called into action until after a pathogen has entered the cells, and antibodies can only bind to antigens on the surface of the cell (NOT inside the cell).

Now you have to rely on T-cells to orchestrate the killing of infected cells, in order to stop the spread of infection – this is the realm of the innate immune system (the one that is suppressed by repeated vaccinations, remember?). Such is the natural sequence of events when a th1-type response is generated, such as seen in natural infection [22].

The natural Th-1 type response is to eliminate infection via externalising it – this is the classic disease symptoms we know so well, such as rash, fever, cough, mucus, swelling etc [23]. Th2 dominance inhibits this natural response, which inevitably must lead to either:

  • altered disease manifestation, so for example, the vaccinated person who has whooping cough, may have a cough, but without the tell-tale ‘whoop’ sound [24].
  • chronic underlying infection, inflammation or auto-immune disease [25-26].

Let’s just re-emphasize that last point, because it’s really important, and once understood, you’ll never again look at vaccines the same way again…

First: Vaccines are designed to stimulate antibody production (Th2 immune system).

Second: Antibodies cannot stop infection, nor can they enter cells that are infected.

Third: Due to immune imbalance caused by vaccination, infected cells harbour infection chronically, causing inflammation and auto-immune conditions.

Fourth: person shows only mild or no signs of acute illness, but becomes progressively burdened down by chronic health issues.

So, what actually happens is that the vaccine has not prevented infection, it has simply prevented the body from expelling the infection.

It goes without saying, that such a state of affairs does wonders for the vaccine ‘efficacy’ statistics, since the vaccinated are less likely to show overt signs of acute disease, and therefore, less likely to be diagnosed, or even tested – meanwhile, chronic ‘non-communicable’ diseases continue to spiral out of control…

Now you know why.

References:

[1] Crone NE, Reder AT. Severe tetanus in immunized patients with high anti-tetanus titers, Neurology, 1992, 42(4): 761-764.

[2] Maselle SY, Matre R, Mbise R, Hofstad T. Neonatal tetanus despite protective serum antitoxin concentration, FEMS Microbiol Immunol, 1991, 3(3): 171-175.

[3] Pitisuttithum P, Gilbert P, Gurwith M, et al. Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled efficacy trial of a bivalent recombinant glycoprotein 120 HIV-1 vaccine among injection drug users in Bangkok, Thailand. J Infect Dis, 2006, 194(12):1661-1761.

[4] Brodie M, Park W. Active Immunization Against Poliomyelitis, Am J Pub Health, 1936, 26:119–125.

[5] O’Connor A, Merrill W Chase, 98, Scientist Who Advanced Immunology, New York Times, Jan 22, 2004. https://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/22/nyregion/merrill-w-chase-98-scientist-who-advanced-immunology.html. Accessed October, 2018.

[6] Røsjø, E., Lossius, A., Abdelmagid, N., Lindstrøm, J. C., Kampman, M. T., Jørgensen, L., … Holmøy, T. (2017). Effect of high-dose vitamin D3 supplementation on antibody responses against Epstein–Barr virus in relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis. Multiple Sclerosis Journal, 23(3), 395–402.

[7] Halstead SB, O’Rourke EJ. Antibody-enhanced dengue virus infection in primate leukocytes, Nature, 1977, 265(5596):739-741.

[8] ] Dejnirattisai W, Jumnainsong A, Onsirisakul N, et al. Cross-reacting antibodies enhance dengue virus infection in humans, Science, 2010, 328(5979):745-748.

[9] Dejnirattisai W, Supasa P, Wongwiwat W, et al. Dengue virus sero-cross-reactivity drives antibody-dependent  enhancement of infection with zika virus, Nat Immunol, 2016, 17(9):1102-1108.

[10] Homsy J, Meyer M, Tateno M, et al. The fc and not CD4 receptor mediates antibody enhancement of HIV infection in human cells, Science, 1989, 244(4910):1357+.

[11] Furuyama W, Marzi A, Carmody AB, et al. Fcy-receptor Ila-mediated Src signaling pathway is essential for the antibody-dependent enhancement of ebola virus infection, PLoS Pathogen, 2016, 12(12):e1006139.

[12] Biryukov S, Angov E, Landmesser ME, et al. Complement and antibody-mediated enhancement of red blood cell invasion and growth of malaria parasites, EBioMedicine, 2016, 9:207-216.

[13] Janeway CA Jr, Travers P, Walport M, et al. Immunobiology: The Immune System in Health and Disease. 5th edition. New York: Garland Science; 2001

[14] Cochrane CG, Dixon FJ. Cell and tissue damage through antigen-antibody complexes. Calif Med. 1969;111(2):99-112.

[15] Brad Spellberg, John E. Edwards; Type 1/Type 2 Immunity in Infectious Diseases, Clinical Infectious Diseases, Volume 32, Issue 1, 1 January 2001, Pages 76–102.

[16] Kaur R, Dhakad MS, Goyal R, Bhalla P, Dewan R (2016) Study of TH1/TH2 Cytokine Profiles in HIV/AIDS Patients in a Tertiary Care Hospital in India. J Med Microb Diagn 5:214

[17] Sato M, Goto S, Kaneko R, et al. Impaired production of Th1 cytokines and increased frequency of Th2 subsets in pBMC from advanced cancer patients. Anticancer Res, 1998, 18:3951-3955.

[18] Huang M, Wang J, Lee p, et al. Human non-small cell lung cancer cells express a type 2 cytokine pattern. Cancer Res, 1995, 55:3847-3853.

[19] Filella X, Alcover J, Zarco MA, et al. Analysis of type T1 and T2 cytokines in patients with prostate cancer, prostate, 2000, 44:271-274.

[20] Gupta, S., Aggarwal, S., Rashanravan, B., Lee, T., TH1 and TH2-like cytokines in CD4+ and CD8+ T cells in autism, J of Neuroimmunol, 1998; 85:106-109.

[21] Coghlan A. Super-antibodies break the cell barrier, New Scientist, https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn4881-super-antibodies-break-the-cell-barrier/. Accessed December 2018.

[22] Kim EJ, Cho D, Kim TS. Efficient induction of T helper type 1-mediated immune responses in antigen-primed mice by anti-CD3 single-chain Fv/interleukin-18 fusion DNA, Immunology, 2004, 111(1): 27–34.

[23] Abbas AK, Murphy KM, Sher A. Functional diversity of helper T lymphocytes, Nature, 1996, 383(6603):787-93.

[24] Nelson KE, Williams C. Infectious Disease Epidemiology: Theory and practice 2007), Jones and Bartlett Learning, pp 131.

[25] Hayflick, L. Slow Viruses, Executive Health Report, Feb. 1981, pp 4.

[26] Talai, N., “Autoimmunity,” in Fudenberg, Basic Clinical Immunology, 3rd Ed., Lange, 1980, p. 222.

10 Reasons Why The Flu Shot is Worse Than Useless

  1. The number of “flu deaths” each year, used to scare people into getting vaccinated, is grossly inaccurate. There are several reasons for this, the main one being that so-called “flu deaths” are lumped in with deaths from pneumonia and ‘influenza-like illnesses’, and ‘respiratory and circulatory causes’ [1]. Out of all those deaths, the CDC ‘estimates’ how many were caused by influenza. Given that a) states are not even required to report flu cases or deaths in adults, and b) the ‘CDC feels it is important to convey the full burden of seasonal flu to the public’ (their words, not mine), one can just imagine how inflated their ‘guesstimates’ are!
  2. Seasonal flu vaccine makes you more susceptible to other respiratory infections [2].
  3. Influenza-related deaths have actually increased, as vaccination rates have increased [3].
  4. Numerous reviews have found that there is evidence of widespread manipulation of data in flu vaccine studies, and what’s more, no measurable benefits in vaccinating healthcare workers, young children, healthy adults, pregnant women or the elderly [4-8]. Actually, let’s just say that there are no measurable benefits for anybody [9].
  5. Flu vaccine induces auto-antibodies against gangliosides in the brain [10]. Gangliosides are found throughout the body, especially the central nervous system and play an important role in many cell functions.
  6. Flu vaccine makes people more susceptible to pandemic influenza strains [11].
  7. After three consecutive years, people who receive the annual flu vaccine, are more likely to get influenza [12].
  8. The prestigious Cochrane Review found that 71 people would need to be vaccinated in order to prevent one case of influenza…while at the same time concluding that only 10% of the studies included in their review had good methodological quality. Therefore, even this unimpressive finding is likely to be vastly over-inflated [4].
  9. Vaccines only target A and B strains of influenza, which account for approximately 10% of known circulating strains. Remembering that “efficacy” is based on ability to produce antibodies, which does not equal immunity anyway [4].
  10. Multidose flu vaccines (such as trivalent and quadrivalent vaccines) contain thimerosal, which is 50% ethylmercury by weight. Ethylmercury is highly toxic, converts to inorganic mercury, persists in the brain for many years. Oh, and it also suppresses the immune system… [13].

References:

[1] CDC. Influenza (Flu): Estimating seasonal influenza-associated deaths in the United States, https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/disease/us_flu-related_deaths.htm. Accessed December, 2018.

[2] Cowling BJ, Fang VJ, Nishiura H, et al. Increased risk of non-influenza respiratory virus infections associated with receipt of inactivated influenza vaccine, Clin Infect Dis, 2012, 54(12):1778-1783.

[3] Simonson L, Reichert TA, Blackwelder WC, Miller MA, Benefits of influenza vaccination on influenza-related mortality among elderly in the US: an unexpected finding, Intern Cong Series, 2004, 1263: 163-167.

[4] Jefferson T, Di Pietrantoni C, Rivetti A, et al. Vaccines for preventing influenza in healthy adults, Cochrane Database Syst Rev, 2010, 7(7): CD001269.

[5] Thomas RE, Jefferson T, Lasserson TJ. Influenza vaccination for healthcare workers who work with the elderly, Cochrane Database Syst Rev, 2010, 17(2): CD005187.

[6] Szilagyi PG, Faibrother G, Griffin MR, et al. Influenza vaccine effectiveness among children 6-59 months of age during 2 influenza seasons: a case-cohort study, Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med, 2008, 162(10): 943-951.

[7] France EK, Smith-Ray R, McClure D, et al. Impact of maternal influenza vaccination during pregnancy on the incidence of acute respiratory illness visits among infants, Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med, 2006, 160(12): 1277-1283.

[8] Osterholm MT, Kelley NS, Sommer A, Belongia EA. Efficacy and effectiveness of influenza: a systematic review and meta-analysis, Lancet Infect Dis, 2012, 12(1)36-44.

[9] Simonsen L, Reichert TA, Viboud C, et al. Impact of influenza vaccination on seasonal mortality in the US elderly population, Arch Intern Med, 2005, 165(3): 265-272.

[10] Nachamkin I, Shadomy SV, Moran AP, et al. Anti-ganglioside antibody induction by swine and other influenza vaccines: insights into vaccine-associated Guillain-Barre syndrome, J Infect Dis, 2008, 198(2): 226-233.

[11] Bodewes R, Kreigtz JH, Baas C, et al. Vaccination against human influenza A/H3N2 virus prevents the induction of heterosubtypic immunity against lethal infection with avian influenza A/H5N1 virus, PLoS One, 2009, 4(5): e5538.

[12] Skowronski D, Chambers C, Sabaiduc S, et al. A perfect storm: impact of genomic variation and serial vaccination on low influenza vaccination effectiveness during 2014-2015 season, Clin Infect Dis, 2016, 63(1): 21-32.

[13] Loison E, Poirier-Beaudouin B, Seffer V, et al. Suppression by thimerosal of ex-vivo CD4+ T-cell response to influenza vaccine and induction of apoptosis in primary memory T cells, PLoS One, 2014, 9(4): e92705

Vaccines: A Real Pain In The…BACK?

Vaccines cause back pain
My son told me recently that the nurses had been to his high school to administer HPV vaccines. He didn’t get one, but all his classmates did. He said many complained of having sore arms, and one boy was crying in class, because of severe pain in his back.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m 100% convinced that vaccines are nasty, and cause all kinds of problems, but really! Back pain, too?!
I mulled over it for a week or so, and the more I thought about it, the more it all began to make sense.
Back pain is one of the major symptoms of KIDNEY STRESS or DIS-EASE. This is fairly common knowledge in the world of medicine [1-3].
There are numerous reports and case studies in the scientific literature, of kidney problems and diseases following vaccination [4-6]. Dr. Suzanne Humphries was a nephrologist (kidney specialist) who began to question vaccines when she saw first-hand the damage they caused in her patients [7].
It seems fairly straightforward.
1)      The kidneys contain millions of microscopic little filters (known as glomerulus/glomeruli), which filter 140 – 180 litres of blood per day.
2)      Vaccines contain toxins, which end up in the bloodstream.
3)      The kidneys have to filter those toxins from the bloodstream.
But actually, that’s only part of the story.
The whole point of vaccines is to induce antibody production. The more the merrier! Those antibodies produced by the body (over the course of days/weeks/months following vaccination or infection) bind together with the antigen in vaccines, which then form antigen-antibody complexes. These are rather large (in the scheme of things), and tend to get stuck in small areas – like the blood vessels, the joints…and the tiny little filters in your hard-working kidneys. This causes inflammation and tissue damage in the kidneys [8].
This process is called Type III Hypersensitivity reaction, and can occur hours, days or even years after exposure to the original antigen [8].
But wait, there’s more!

The aluminium, contained in many vaccines, also form complexes with the antigen found in vaccines. Antigen-aluminium complexes are a higher molecular weight (24 – 83 kDa) than the molecular weight cut-off of the glomeruli (~18 kDa) [9]. So, then you end up with aluminium lodged in your kidneys, too, causing chronic inflammation.

With billions of vaccines being administered worldwide, maybe this partly explains why back pain is the leading cause of disability in the world [10]?

Or why more than $50 billion is spent every year, on back pain treatment, in the US alone [10]?

Or why 6 million people are dealing with chronic back pain in the US alone [10]?

And, why my son’s classmate was crying in agony following the HPV vaccination?

PS. Since the kidneys also regulate blood pressure, is it possible that vaccines are indirectly contributing to the epidemic of high blood pressure? Ah, that’s a whole other can of worms…

 

[1] Healthline: The Most Common Symptoms of Kidney Cancer, https://www.healthline.com/health/kidney-cancer-symptoms#takeaway. Accessed October, 2018.

 

[2] National Kidney Foundation: 3 Early Warning Signs of Kidney Disease, https://www.kidney.org/blog/kidney-cars/3-early-warning-signs-kidney-disease. Accessed October, 2018.

 

[3] MedicineNet: Kidney Pain (Location, Symptoms, Relief) https://www.medicinenet.com/kidney_pain/article.htm. Accessed October, 2018.

 

[4] Tan SY, Cumming AD. Vaccine related glomerulonephritis. BMJ : British Medical Journal. 1993;306(6872):248.

 

[5] NOVATI R, NEBIOLO PE, GALOTTO C, MASTAGLIA M, MANES M. Acute renal failure after influenza vaccination: a case report. Journal of Preventive Medicine and Hygiene. 2014;55(1):31-32.

 

[6] Debiec, H. et al., 2011, Early Childhood Membranous Nephropathy Due to Cationic Bovine Serum Albumin,” NEJM. Jun 2;364(22):2101-10.

 

[7] Humphries S, Bystrianyk R. Dissolving Illusions: Disease, Vaccines and the Forgotten History, CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2013.

 

[8] Eggleton P. Hypersensitivity: Immune Complex Mediated (Type III). In eLS. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester, 2013.

 

[9] Exley C. Aluminium and Medicine. In Molecular and Supramolecular Bioinorganic Chemistry: Applications in Medical Sciences. Merce ALR, Felcman J, Recio MAL, Nova Biomedical Books: New York, 2009, pp 45 – 68.

 

[10] Pain Doctor: Chronic Pain Statistics, https://paindoctor.com/resources/chronic-pain-statistics. Accessed October, 2018.