THEY LEFT THEIR HIV IN SAN FRANCISCO
A Report On The Sixth International Conference On AIDS
By John Lauritsen
New York Native 24 June 1990
The "No-News Conference" was the way media people privately
referred to the Sixth International Conference On AIDS, held 20-24 June
1990 in San Francisco. This was not entirely true. There were a
number of important developments -- but they mostly took place
offstage, like acts of violence in a Greek tragedy. Discourse in the
official conference consisted largely of stale propaganda and
trivialities. Most of the "findings" were not new, or if new, were not
Outside the official conference, Luc Montagnier, the discoverer of
HIV (the so-called "AIDS virus"), admitted that HIV was not sufficient
to cause AIDS, and perhaps not even necessary. S-C Lo presented
evidence that a mycoplasma he had isolated from AIDS patients was
sufficient to cause fatal illness. Peter Duesberg spoke out against
the HIV-AIDS hypothesis. Kenneth Alonso presented a preliminary report
on the use of total body hyperthermia (heating) as a treatment for
Kaposi's sarcoma (KS). AIDS superstar Robert Gallo, under
Congressional investigation for fraud and smarting from an unflattering
article in Spy Magazine, stayed away from the conference, explaining
that he would be busy in Moscow, teaching the Soviet health authorities
what they needed to know about AIDS, and he hoped his absence would not
The character of the conference was strongly influenced by protest
demonstrations, which were held every day in the streets as well as
inside the official conference sites, the Moscone Convention Center and
the Marriott Hotel. Many of the delegates and speakers wore red arm
bands, in solidarity with protests against a United States policy
barring HIV-infected people from entering the country. Conference
rhetoric was often highly emotional, perhaps reflecting the lack of any
effective treatment for "AIDS" and increasing uncertainty as to what
exactly the syndrome is or what causes it. Suffice one example, an
"Editor's Note" which preceded an Associated Press dispatch:
The thousand of voices in the halls and the streets around
the Sixth International Conference on AIDS resonated with
passionate humanity, human compassion and intense dedication,
love, anger and grief. The conference ends on Sunday, but the
sound of those voices -- a few of which are recalled here --
linger in the memories of those who listened. ("AIDS-Voices",
Associated Press, 23 June 1990)
Before describing these events in more detail, a word needs to be
said about the size of the conference, and its implications for
The conference was attended by 12,000 delegates and 2,000 media
people. When I walked into the main room at the Moscone Center, where
the opening ceremony was held, I realized that I had never seen so many
people together in one room. The effect was overwhelming, and I soon
retreated to the media area, where it was possible to watch the
proceedings over closed-circuit television, and where printed copies of
the speeches were available. According to the media information staff,
the Moscone room holds at least 12,000 people -- equal to the
population of a good-sized town in many parts of the country. Now, an
audience of 12,000 may be suitable for purposes of mass indoctrination,
but it is obviously incompatible with scientific dialogue, with the
critical examination of ideas.
In all, over 5,000 abstracts were submitted to the conference
committee, of which half, or 2512, were accepted. According to the
conference organizers, at least two and as many as eight scientists
reviewed each and every abstract, no small task. If someone spent only
one minute reading each of the 2512 abstracts that were accepted,
published by the conference in three volumes, it would take him 41.9
hours. Of these abstracts, 383 were presented orally and 2129 were
presented in poster form.
On each of three days, Thursday through Saturday, poster sessions
were held. People who presented posters stood by them so that anyone
interested in their work could talk to them. Each poster measured 8
feet long by 4 feet high. So, if all of the 2129 posters had been put
end to end, the total length would have been 17,032 feet (= 3.23
miles). Allowing for aisles and gaps, the total length someone would
have had to walk to see all of the posters would probably be over four
My point is two-fold: given information overload of this extent,
the critical faculties of delegates and reporters were taxed to the
limit; and in the context of 2512 abstracts, the evidentiary weight of
any one abstract is virtually nil. Nevertheless, in the past,
advocates of the HIV-AIDS hypothesis or of the benefits of AZT therapy
have based their arguments on abstracts presented at AIDS conferences.
In terms of content, most of the abstracts fell into a few,
familiar categories: projections of various kinds, drug trials,
descriptions of AIDS services, in vitro studies of all sorts,
psychological studies, or studies of correlations between HIV infection
and something else.
Curiously, eleven of the posters (#664-674) were seroprevalence
studies of HTLV-1 or HTLV-2 infection. HTLV-1 is a retrovirus that was
"discovered" by Robert Gallo, who believes, probably wrongly, that it
is the cause of leukemia.(1) Prior to Gallo's "co-discovery" of HIV in
1984, he believed that HTLV-1 was also the cause of AIDS, a hypothesis
which was never tenable. It is difficult to imagine why abstracts on
HTLV-1 or HTLV-2 infection were considered relevant to a conference on
All of the abstracts I was able to glance at -- perhaps over 1000
-- had one thing in common: They were politically correct. That is to
say, none of them disputed the HIV-AIDS hypothesis or the benefits of
the AIDS Establishment's favored drug, AZT (also known as Retrovir or
zidovudine). The question then arises, what about the 2500 abstracts
that were rejected? Were they simply not good enough? Or, were some
of them rejected for violating AIDS orthodoxy? AIDS activists in San
Francisco have demanded that the conference organizers release copies
of the rejected abstracts, so we may soon have answers to these
In a widely published letter written before the conference, Larry
Kramer called upon the gay community and AIDS activists of San
Francisco to riot, adding almost as an afterthought that he himself
would stay home in New York. With expectations thus engendered, I
imagined myself in the role of a war correspondent on the front lines,
and pondered what camera and film to bring. I decided upon a tiny
Rollei 35TE, so I could run fast, loaded with T-Max rated at ASA 3200,
to photograph automobiles burning at night. Neither opportunity
presented itself, though there were plenty of demonstrations and a few
On the day before the conference (Tuesday, 19 June 1990), over a
thousand demonstrators converged on the U.S. Immigration and
Naturalization Service (INS) offices, in protest over a policy barring
people with HIV antibodies from entering the country. (A 1987
amendment by Sen. Jesse Helms, R-N.C., required the Public Health
Service to classify infection by HIV as a contagious disease that may
bar foreigners from entering the United States.) A smoke bomb was set
off, a flag was burned, and eight arrests were made.
The restriction has been condemned by AIDS organizations around
the world, as well as by the World Health Organization and the European
Parliament. A temporary waiver announced by the INS in April, whereby
a 10-day visa would let people enter the country for professional or
scientific conferences without saying if they are infected with the
AIDS virus, was considered by AIDS activists to be inadequate and
insulting. Conference co-chair Paul Volberding warned that no more
AIDS conferences would be held on U.S. soil until the 1987 law is
abolished -- the next one scheduled being Boston in 1992.
Later on Tuesday, ACT UP members blocked an entrance to the
Marriott Hotel, demanding that more free conference passes be given to
people with AIDS (PWAs). The conference organizers were willing to
meet this demand, and on Wednesday they and ACT UP held a joint press
conference to announce that 150 free passes would be given to PWAs, in
addition to the 350 that had already been issued.
ACT UP made a strong presence, and for most of a week their T-
shirts, badges, posters, leaflets, and press packets were ubiquitous in
San Francisco. New York ACT UP member Peter Staley spoke at the
opening ceremonies on Wednesday, replacing Vito Russo, who was unable
to attend. Since the conference was boycotted by many domestic and
most foreign AIDS organizations, ACT UP appeared by default to be the
sole representative of AIDS activism. This may have been unfortunate,
as European AIDS activists tend to be more skeptical regarding such
verities of the U.S. AIDS Establishment as the HIV-AIDS hypothesis and
AZT therapy. (Although in all fairness I must admit that ACT UP is
rapidly becoming more critical of AZT.)
On Sunday (24 June 1990) Health and Human Services Secretary Louis
W. Sullivan attempted to speak at the closing ceremonies, but his words
were drowned out by hundreds of demonstrators, whose shouts and chants
were augmented by whistles and air horns. Some of the demonstrators
had gotten into the Moscone Center on free passes, some had been given
badges by delegates, and some were delegates and media people who were
angered by the policies of the U.S. Public Health Service. Although
Sullivan's speech was long, and he persisted in reading all of it, not
a word could be heard. This was no great loss, as the speech consisted
almost entirely of empty rhetoric and treacly sentiment, as suffice the
We must find the compassion and humanity to transcend
misunderstanding, and, yes, even transcend hatred and violence.
The truth of the matter is that we need each other. That will
always be so. Until we can completely unravel the mysteries of
the disease, we must find the ways and means to work together....
We must learn to listen to each other, to learn from each other
and to work together. Our frustration must never drive us to
close our ears or our hearts.
The Crumbling HIV-AIDS Hypothesis
Behind the scenes the AIDS construct is beginning to fall apart.
It is now established that Kaposi's sarcoma (KS), one of the two
hallmark diseases of "AIDS", can occur in people who test negative for
past and present infection with HIV, even using the most sensitive
techniques. Since "AIDS" is defined tautologically as any of over two
dozen old diseases in the presence of HIV antibodies, some of the more
prescient "AIDS experts" are now saying that KS may not really be
"AIDS" after all.
In addition, the critique of the HIV hypothesis by Peter Duesberg,
Professor of Molecular Biology at Berkeley, is beginning to sink in.(2)
The trumpet has sounded, and although the walls of Jericho have not yet
fallen, they are cracked and getting pretty shaky.
On top of that, Luc Montagnier, the French scientist who
discovered HIV in 1983, has admitted that HIV by itself cannot cause
AIDS; and Robert Gallo, the American AIDS superstar who "co-discovered"
HIV a year after Montagnier, is currently under investigation for
Montagnier, Lo and Weyer
The most important event of the conference was a hastily organized
panel on "Possible Infectious Co-Factors In AIDS: Importance Of
Mycoplasmas", held at Le Meridien Hotel on Wednesday (20 June 1990),
sponsored by the American Medical Association. The speakers were Luc
Montagnier of the Pasteur Institute in Paris; S-C Lo of the Armed
Forces Institute of Pathology in Washington, DC; and J. Weyer of the
University of Cologne. All three talks were highly technical, and I
doubt if even one person in the audience completely understood them.
Nevertheless, the 300-400 people in the room listened attentively.
Montagnier's talk was on "Mycoplasmas as possible co-factors in
AIDS". His main point, which caused widespread consternation at the
conference, was that HIV by itself cannot cause AIDS. Something else
is needed. He was not sure what that something else might be, but he
listed possibilities: autoimmunity, viruses, or bacteria. It is odd
that Montagnier did not even consider toxins (including environmental
toxins and medical or recreational drugs) as possible co-factors.
One possibility, according to Montagnier, is that the retrovirus
HIV only becomes lethal in the presence of a mycoplasma, a super-tiny
bacterium-like organism. When one such mycoplasma was added to a
laboratory dish containing an HIV culture, the retrovirus grew faster.
And when an antibiotic which killed the mycoplasma was added to the
dish, HIV again became quiescent. Montagnier showed a slide entitled,
"HIV, Mycoplasma & AIDS: A Pathogenic Model" -- which indicated that
HIV left to itself remained completely inactive and benign, but the
addition of the mycoplasma transformed the Sleeping Beauty into a
Montagnier further disconcerted his listeners by affirming some of
the ideas that have been formulated and popularized by Peter Duesberg:
Retroviruses are the most harmless and benign of all microbes -- it is
not in their nature to cause lethal illness. Montagnier said it was
puzzling that HIV could cause death, since almost immeasurably small
quantities of the virus were ever found in PWAs, and since HIV is a
retrovirus, a class of viruses which normally coexist with the host,
"reproducing slowly without killing". "It is not in the philosophy of
retroviruses to kill all the cells of the host", stated Montagnier.
Lo's talk was on "Mycoplasmas as pathogenic agents in AIDS
patients". His main point was that a mycoplasma or "virus-like
infectious agent" (VLIA), which he had isolated from AIDS patients,
could cause fatal illness all by itself. Lo reported on a study of
previously healthy, non-AIDS patients (that is, who tested negative for
HIV antibodies), who were fatally infected with the VLIA. He showed
color slides of these patients dying and dead, and organs of their
bodies removed during autopsy. Severe and widespread systemic damage
had taken place.
Then Lo discussed a patient who did not have "AIDS" (according to
the CDC surveillance definition, which requires the presence of HIV
antibodies), but was nevertheless mortally sick. Following treatment
with the antibiotic doxycycline, the patient achieved a remarkable
recovery. Lo emphasized that a relapse was always possible -- however,
six months after treatment, the patient had gained forty pounds and
appeared to have recovered fully.
Lo's VLIA has fulfilled the animal model for pathogenesis. When
injected into infra-human primates, the animals become sick and die.
This is in sharp contrast to HIV, which has never caused illness in an
animal. Chimpanzees can be infected with HIV, as their bodies produce
HIV antibodies, but they nevertheless remain perfectly healthy over six
years after infection with HIV.
J. Weyer, a mathematician from the University of Cologne, spoke on
"The structure of the epidemic spread of AIDS: Mathematical evidence of
an infectious co-factor". The salient point of his talk was that the
epidemiology of "AIDS" contradicts the hypothesis that HIV is the sole
cause of the syndrome. He then proceeded to present a mathematical
model, which attempted to show that HIV infection, coupled with
infection by another kind of infectious agent, might be consistent with
the epidemiology of AIDS. There are diseases, like acute pneumonia,
that are caused by the joint infection of a bacterium plus a virus.
All in all, the panel dealt a heavy blow to the HIV-AIDS
hypothesis. Montagnier stated that the "AIDS virus" was not sufficient
to cause "AIDS". Lo demonstrated that an AIDS-like illness and death
could result from infection with a mycoplasma, in the total absence of
HIV. And the mathematician Weyer demonstrated that AIDS epidemiology
refutes the hypothesis that HIV is the sole cause of "AIDS".
Press coverage of the panel reflected the type of censorship that
obtains whenever AIDS orthodoxy is threatened. Stories in the New York
Times (22 June 1990) and the Washington Post (22 June 1990) discussed
Montagnier's talk at length, but didn't even mention Lo or Weyer.
Peter Duesberg spoke on "Dissociation of the Epidemiologies of HIV
& AIDS" at the Advanced Immune Discoveries Symposium (about which more
later) at Le Meridien Hotel. He argued that the epidemiology of AIDS
is not consistent with the prevailing paradigm: of a single disease
entity caused by a single infectious agent. AIDS has not spread, the
way an infectious disease would, but has remained tightly
compartmentalized, confined almost entirely to two main risk groups:
intravenous drug users and a certain subset of gay men. The thesis
that AIDS is concentrated in risk-groups owing to sexual transmission
is unlikely, since the percentage of HIV-antibody positives among more
than a million sexually active 17- to 19-year-old Army recruits has
remained constant at 0.03% since 1985. Ever since AIDS was defined in
1981, more than 90% of AIDS cases are males. Different risk groups get
different AIDS diseases. Typical AIDS-diseases are currently observed
in the absence of HIV, but in the same risk groups in which HIV-
positive counterparts occur -- for example, KS in gay men.
Duesberg pointed out that he is no longer alone, as a number of
prominent scientists have questioned the HIV-AIDS hypothesis, including
Nobel-Prize-winner Walter Gilbert at Harvard; the eminent virologist
Beverly Griffin in England; Luc Montagnier in Paris; and Harry Rubin,
the dean of retrovirology and Professor of Molecular Biology at
Duesberg said a few words about AZT -- that the drug was designed
to kill lymphocytes -- that it must kill 500 normal cells in order to
kill one HIV-infected cell, and even then, there is no reason to
believe that the one infected cell contributed in any way to "AIDS".
AZT is now being administered to more people than have died from AIDS
so far -- people who will now die from the AZT.
He concluded by giving a brief description of his "Risk-AIDS"
hypothesis, the gist of which is that different risk groups and
different individuals may be getting sick in different ways and for
different reasons. What we should do is to examine the risks that
impinge on them. In a way, the "Risk-AIDS" hypothesis is more like a
pre-hypothesis, inasmuch as its main thrust is a call for
investigation. We need to find out the characteristics of PWAs within
each of the risk groups -- the risks that have affected them. To date
such research either has not been done at all, or has been done
Following Duesberg's half hour talk, a video was shown of a
documentary recently shown on Channel Four Television in Great Britain,
entitled "AIDS, The Unheard Voices". I am probably prejudiced, as I
was featured in the documentary myself, but I thought it was superbly
done. It is heartening to see that we AIDS Dissidents can also produce
first-rate propaganda, which is all the more effective because we have
facts and logic on our side.
The Alternate Conference
An alternate conference, Advanced Immune Discoveries Symposium,
was held in Le Meridien Hotel, in the immediate vicinity of the Moscone
Center and the Marriott Hotel. Its main organizer was Laurence
Badgley, Director of the Foundation for Research of Natural Therapies
(FRONT). Aside from Duesberg, described above, talks were given on a
wide variety of topics, all of which lay outside the boundaries of AIDS
orthodoxy. These included such treatments as Peptide T, mushrooms,
ozone, vitamins and micronutrients, aloe vera/fatty acids, ascorbate,
compound Q, thymic hormones, passive immune therapy, viscum album,
herbs, typhoid vaccine, and oral acemannan.
Unfortunately, the turnout of several hundred attendees was not
enough to pay expenses, and Badgley was forced to cancel the Sunday
session. One might question whether there were a sound scientific
basis for some of the alternate treatments, but the same point could be
made more strongly with regard to some of the treatments featured in
the main conference. At least the alternate therapies were non-toxic,
as contrasted to the ultimately lethal drug, AZT.
Aside from Duesberg, the most interest at the alternate conference
was aroused by the presentation of Kenneth Alonso, "Hyperthermia for
AIDS". The hyperthermia technique involves taking blood outside the
body of the patient, passing it through a heat exchanger (a sort of
loop), and returning it to the body. Through this process the entire
body is gradually raised to a temperature of 42 degrees centigrade (or
108 degrees Fahrenheit), where it is held for two hours. The procedure
must be performed under general anesthesia, because the patient could
not tolerate it otherwise, and because anesthesia permits the heart
beat and respiration rate to be regulated.
Alonso's first case was a 33 year-old white man diagnosed with
lymphadenopathy and KS in the rectum and skin. The patient's CD4 count
was only 5, and he had become progressively sicker despite (probably
because of) AZT therapy, which was discontinued. After hyperthermia
treatment the KS regressed, and he became HIV culture negative. The
CD4 count rose to 105 at 24 hours, 350 at one month, and 720 at three
months. The KS lesions flattened and lost color, and some disappeared.
The second case had had an episode of pneumocystis carinii
pneumonia (PCP), and had KS in the tonsils, lungs, and skin. His CD4
count was 5. The patient was very sick, with a short life expectancy.
Following hyperthermia treatment: after 72 hours there were no
bronchial lesions, and the lymphocyte count rose from 100 to 900.
Alonso cautiously, even defensively, avoided making claims for
hyperthermia as a treatment for KS, emphasizing that more research
needs to be done. He said that the two patients had been carefully
selected on the basis of laboratory criteria. Every cancer treatment,
according to Alonso, is unpredictable: a treatment which would cause
tumors to go into remission in one patient might make tumors grow
faster in another patient. Hyperthermia is no exception.
In the question period, Alonso was asked about risks or side
effects of the treatment. Yes, he replied, there are always risks,
especially in older patients. The treatment is rather drastic, and
some patients will die from it.
Alonso was asked to respond to an attack from Anthony Fauci,
Director of the National Institute for Allergies and Infectious
Diseases, that he was a "headline grabber". He replied that he was not
affected much, and would continue doing what he did best. Fauci had
claimed that heat made HIV grow faster. Alonso said that Fauci's data
and his own could both be correct -- they were not talking about the
same thing. He was sorry that Fauci felt threatened.
Alonso was asked about the effects of hyperthermia on herpes,
cytomegalo, and Epstein-Barr viruses. He replied that he didn't have
answers yet. The question is important, because these viruses, unlike
HIV, are biochemically active and actively pathogenic in AIDS patients.
If there are benefits from hyperthermia, it might well be from
suppression of such viruses, as well as mycoplasmas and other microbes,
known or unknown.
A Long-Term Survivors panel was held on Saturday (23 June 1990).
Now that I've heard a number of such panels, and talked with long-term
survivors themselves, a clear profile has emerged. Long-term survivors
are people who, following their "AIDS" diagnosis: 1) acquired hope and
a determination to live; 2) examined their lives and eliminated
everything that was harmful; and 3) avoided toxic treatments as much as
possible. The Long-term survivors have not given away their self-power
One long-term survivor on the panel stated that "almost all long-
term survivors are on naturopathic or holistic treatments." Another
described how Paul Volberding had urged him to go on AZT, at which
point he told Volberding to go to hell and walked out -- "Why", he
asked, "should I take a drug that would suppress an already suppressed
On The AZT Front
Burroughs Wellcome (BW), the manufacturer of AZT, dominated the
conference from the top down. Conference co-chair Paul Volberding is a
leading player on the BW team -- he was principal investigator of a
major AZT study, and he has propagandized for AZT in the pages of Beta,
a publication of the San Francisco AIDS Foundation. Margaret Fischl,
another BW team player, was given star billing in the conference.
The BW complex in the exhibit hall was as big as a small house --
easily two or three times as large as any other exhibitor. Lavishly
produced literature on AZT/Retrovir/zidovudine was abundantly
Following are the main AZT "findings" reported at the conference:
- (ACTG Protocol 019) Among "patients with asymptomatic HIV
infection", AZT treatment allegedly delays progression to
AIDS. This study was conducted and reported on by Paul
- (ACTG Protocol 016) Among "patients with mildly symptomatic
HIV infection", AZT treatment allegedly delayed the "rate of
disease progression". This study was conducted and reported
on by Margaret Fischl, who made the following sales pitch:
"We have to come to the conclusion that the greatest
advantage has to accrue with early intervention. It has to
occur as early as possible in HIV infection."
- Half the currently recommended dosage of the drug AZT may be
just as effective while causing less severe side effects.
The original AZT dose was 1200 mg. per day. Only six months
ago, in mid-January, the FDA reduced the recommended dose
from 1200 to 600 mg. per day. And now, According to Lawrence
Corey of the University of Washington, Seattle, the dose
should be cut in half again: "At 300 mg. one knows that one
has good antiviral activity."
- Over time HIV develops resistance to AZT, according to
Douglas Richman, who is also on the Burroughs Wellcome team,
having been a principal investigator in the Phase II AZT
trials, which we now know were fraudulent.
This is not the place for an analysis of this research, which I
have commented on elsewhere.(4) I'll just say that I stand by my three
main conclusions regarding the merits of AZT therapy: 1) AZT is a
highly toxic drug; 2) AZT was approved by the FDA on the basis of
fraudulent research; and 3) There is no scientifically credible
evidence that AZT has benefits of any kind.
In the Exhibit Hall one realized what conferences like this are
really about -- billions of dollars of profits for the Medical
Industrial Complex. Convinced as I am that HIV is not the cause of
AIDS, and that anti-retroviral treatments are harmful, I took a dim
view of most of the exhibits. However, there were moments of comic
At all times of the day, delegates and media people could be seen
gawking and giggling at a display of a condom manufacturer, the London
International Group, in which one of their condoms was inflated with
air to the size of a small watermelon -- 45 liters on the average -- at
which point it exploded. I loved this display myself, and had to force
myself to break away from it. Somehow one never tires of watching a
condom being blown up and then bursting.
The booth of the Wyeth-Ayerst Laboratories featured a gadget
called the "Hands Off Tubex Injector", which was a syringe-type device
designed so that health care workers would never need to touch any part
of the needle that might have been in contact with an AIDS patient. A
sign showed a bleeding finger, with the slogan, "Farther From The Point
of Danger." This kind of hysteria is absurd, considering that out of
several thousand carefully monitored needle-stick cases (where health
care workers had accidentally stuck themselves with needles that had
been used on AIDS patients), there are only 34 known cases of sero-
conversion (that is, where the person developed HIV antibodies), and
there is not a single case where AIDS is known to have resulted from
such a needle-stick, despite the much-touted Prego case. However, I
suppose that no hysteria is completely irrational if it makes profits.
The spermicide Nonoxynol 9 (NO9) causes genital inflammation and
other adverse effects in men and women who use condoms lubricated with
the product, despite widespread recommendations for their use. A study
conducted by the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control, in
Vancouver, found that the majority of female prostitutes who used
condoms with NO9 "experienced significant vaginal side effects". Men
who used such condoms experienced rectal irritation. The study group
concluded: "AIDS prevention strategies should focus on latex condoms
According to various reports, gay men are beginning to lapse into
Dr. Rachel Royce of the University of California, Berkeley,
presented evidence that cigarette smoking may accelerate disease
progression in people with AIDS.
Martin Delaney of Project Inform presented preliminary results
from a four-month trial of the toxic and experimental drug Compound Q,
claiming that 38 of 46 patients experienced a stabilization or
measurable improvement in their condition. Compound Q is extremely
controversial, as it has been tested in an underground, quasi-illegal
manner. Delaney, who was the study director, is a public relations
man, with no scientific training or professional research experience of
any kind. Following his presentation, Delaney was sharply attacked by
Arnold Relman, editor of the New England Journal of Medicine,
said: "There is no way on earth to determine from the data whether this
is a flash in the pan or something great." He called Delaney's
decision to release the results of the study "irresponsible", and
compared the study's design, lacking either a control group or review
by other scientists, to "black magic".
Daniel Hoth, director of AIDS clinical trials at the National
Institutes of Health, asserted: "Neither physicians nor patients should
make any decisions based on this information until it's been thoroughly
Whatever the scientific merits of the Sixth International
Conference on AIDS may be, it has at least provided a historical record
of great magnitude. Literally millions of words were recorded for
posterity. If, as I truly believe, it will some day be established that
HIV and AZT were the two greatest blunders, hoaxes and frauds in all of
medical history, then future historians will be able to delve into the
conference documents -- to contemplate with amazement the self-
delusions of which even well-meaning and otherwise intelligent
scientists are capable.
1. For a critique of the HTLV-1-leukemia hypothesis see Peter Duesberg,
"Retroviruses as Carcinogens and Pathogens: Expectations and Reality",
Cancer Research, 1 March 1987.
2. Peter Duesberg, "Human Immunodeficiency Virus and Acquired
Immunodeficiency Syndrome: Correlation But Not Causation", Proceedings
of the National Academy of Sciences, vol. 86, February 1989.
3. For the Risk-AIDS hypothesis see Peter Duesberg; "AIDS: Non-
Infectious Deficiencies Acquired By Drug consumption And Other Risk
Factors"; Research in Immunology, Paris 1990, 141.
4. John Lauritsen, "AZT Watch: New Research Does Not Prove Efficacy",
New York Native, issue 367, 30 April 1990. Poison By Prescription: The AZT Story, New York, 1990.