The bare essentials of the Eleopulos and colleagues paper are:
1. No researcher has yet presented evidence for the isolation of any
particle, retroviral-like or otherwise, proven to be a retrovirus by virtue
of demonstrating its ability to produce exact copies of itself when placed
in an "uninfected" cell culture. Although the method for retroviral
isolation was thoroughly discussed at and published by the Pasteur Institute
in 1973 no HIV researcher has yet presented evidence for HIV isolation
by this method.
2. It is invalid to speak of HIV particles, HIV proteins, HIV RNA or
HIV DNA (cDNA) or even entertain the notion of HIV antigens or molecular
or viral cloning without such proof.
3. The detection in culture fluids of reverse transcription of the primer-template
A(n).dT15 is not specific proof for the presence of a retrovirus.
4. The "HIV proteins" are defined as the subset of proteins
(approximately 20%) of the proteins present in cultures/co-cultures of
tissues from AIDS patients which react with some antibodies present in
some AIDS patient sera. However, it is not possible to declare any protein
a component of a unique, exogenously acquired retrovirus by means of an
5. There is no proof that any of the "HIV proteins" are coded
by the "HIV genome". And, for example, in a computer-assisted
analysis of the amino acid sequences of the envelope protein complexes
derived from the nucleotide sequences of seven AIDS virus isolates, it
was reported that gp41 protein, which should have a molecular weight of
41,000, had a calculated weight of 52,000 to 54,000.
6. There is disagreement as to which are the "specific" HIV
proteins and thus which proteins are significant in defining HIV infection
on the basis of the HIV Western blot antibody test. Presently, worldwide
there are at least ten major sets of criteria for defining a positive HIV
Western blot and hence HIV infection. Thus positivity and infection in
some institutions or countries is not positivity or infection in others.
7. The "HIV RNA" and "HIV DNA" are defined on the
basis of length (approximately 10,000 nucleotides) and chemical composition
(adenine rich) of all the RNA present in cultures of tissues of AIDS patients,
NOT on the basis of RNA extracted from a particle first isolated and then
proven to be a retrovirus.
8. In 1990 the HIV genome was said to consist of ten genes. This year
Montagnier reported that HIV possesses eight genes and according to Barr‚-Sinoussi,
HIV has nine genes. Neither is there constancy of the number of nucleotides
in the "HIV genome". Also, to date, only 11 full length "HIV
genomes" have been sequenced and accordingly, HIV genotype consignments
are derived from sequence analysis of subgenomes measuring 2% to 30% of
the total. The data is that such "genomes" vary between 3-40%.
(If 30% of the HIV genome varies as much as 40%, how much does 100% of
the HIV genome vary? In the HIV Western blot, how can an HIV producing
one set of proteins detect antibodies that are produced in response to
the set of all other disparate "HIV genomes"? When does "HIV"
become some other entity?). Thus, not only are there no two HIV genomes
of the same length or nucleotide composition, there is no single genetic
entity "HIV DNA" to describe the myriads of "HIV genomes".
It is also estimated that patients contain between one and one hundred
million distinct HIV DNAs at the one time. Neither is it correct to encompass
such DNAs under the umbrella of a quasispecies of "closely related
9. Even if there were proof for the isolation of a unique, exogenously
acquired retrovirus with a unique stretch of RNA (cDNA), there is no evidence
for the cloning of HIV.
10. There are many mechanisms, all well known to retrovirologists and
which have nothing to do with the acquisition of an exogenous retrovirus,
that may explain all the "HIV phenomena", that is, the generation
of particles, proteins and nucleic acids in AIDS patients or in cultures/co-cultures
of tissues from AIDS patients. For example, the types of cells used to
"culture HIV" may exhibit such phenomena independently of being
"infected with HIV".
11. Neither the HIV antibody tests nor the HIV genomic tests have been
appraised by reference to the only scientifically valid gold standard,
HIV isolation. Notwithstanding, in one study, the concordance between HIV
serology and "HIV DNA" varied between 40- 100% and in another
study only 74% of patients were positive for plasma "HIV RNA".
In "Seven French laboratories with extensive experience in PCR detection
of HIV DNA", the data revealed that of 138 samples shown to contain
"HIV DNA", 34 (25%) did not contain "HIV antibodies"
while of 262 specimens that did not contain "HIV DNA", 17 (6%)
did contain "HIV antibodies".
12. Regardless of the above, for retrovirologists, proof of the existence
and pathogenicity of a given retrovirus is contingent upon demonstration
of specific antibodies to retroviral proteins. The significance of this
fact is demonstrated by the example of HL23V, the "first" human
retrovirus discovered by Gallo in the mid 1970s, By 1980, the demonstration
that antibodies to HL23V were non-specific led to its precipitous demise,
so much so that Gallo now never mentions his "first" virus and
regards HTLV-I as the "first" human retrovirus. In addition to
the evidence presented in the Eleopulos et al 1993 Bio/Technology paper,
further data is presented that the 88% of AIDS patients infected with one
or more fungal (including Pneumocystis carinni) or mycobacterial species
contain antibodies to such organisms which may cross react with "HIV
proteins" found in the HIV Western blot. Thus it is impossible to
claim that such diseases are caused by HIV on the basis of an antibody
test or that "HIV seropositivity" in such patients is caused
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