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Bad Manners and Good Gossip

« HIV/AIDS: The Cardboard Castles Collapse | Main | Dear Dr. Culshaw: What is PEM, and How Does It Concern HIV, AIDS and Africa? »

November 16, 2006


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Dr. Dach links the webiste of the Mass General investigation of "elite controllers."

Here are some of the investigators?

Topping the list is Douglas Richman, who helped orchestrate the AZT trials for Wellcome in '87.

With the following co-conspirators:

AIDS Action Committee, Boston
AIDS Vaccine Advocacy Coalition (AVAC)
Center for AIDS Information and Advocacy, Houston
Gay Men's Health Crisis, New York
International AIDS Society - USA
International AIDS Vaccine Inititative
Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center
Physicians' Research Network (PRN), New York
POZ magazine
Test Positive Aware Network, Chicago
Treatment Action Group, New York
Also more than 100 health care providers worldwide

And, because no truth-seeking AIDS study can afford to be without him, we have none other than the former NY Times editorial correspondent and totally disgraced professor of psychobabble-aids-immunology, the very dishonorable, John P. Moore.

Certainly a gang designed to come up with the real answer as to why an unknown percentage of infected people never even know they are infected.

It is maybe only a coincidence that the best guess of the investigator quoted by Dr. Dach is spot on the frequency of healthy positives the army finds.

Chris Tyler

One has to wonder why other so-called 'immunodeficiency' viruses in other animals haven't managed to jump species. For instance, cats are said to be infected by 'FIV' and it's endemic in many populations, meaning it's widely distributed.

However, no one seems to be worrying about this jumping into the human population which closely inhabits the same areas as these cats.

For instance, one study wanted to find out the prevalence of antibodies to FIV in Finland and found 'Adult male cats in the capital area of Finland had a FIV prevalence of 24%, a relative proportion 4.7 times higher than that for females.' 1.

So why have we chosen to suspect Africa as the origin of 'HIV' which seems much less plausible than something more commonly associated with humans broadly speaking? I wonder if there is just a slight bit of racism involved.


Walter Renko


I have to ask -- with all these Finnish cats scurrying about with the deadly Feline Immondeficiency Virus -- were any of them sick with FAIDS?

Maybe all these infected felines were "elite feline controllers" or something like that.

Gideon Downs, MD

In the event that anyone was wondering how a watermelon could be mistaken for a brain, even at 80 pixel rez, they need only look at this actual scan of a bilateral sub-acute subdural hematoma from a patient that underwent a successful surgical intervention.

Dr. Phillip S. Duke

Feline Immunodeficiency viruses do cause an AIDS-like syndrome in housecats (1), they also can be transmitted across species boundaries within the felines similarly to the way some primate lentiviruses can cross some species boundaries but not others (2,3,4).


1. Phadke AP, de la Concha-Bermejillo A, Wolf AM, Andersen PR, Baladandayuthapani V, Collisson EW.
Pathogenesis of a Texas feline immunodeficiency virus isolate: an emerging subtype of clade B.
Vet Microbiol. 2006 Jun 15;115(1-3):64-76.
PMID: 16574348

2. Poss M, Idoine A, Ross HA, Terwee JA, Vandewoude S, Rodrigo A.
Recombination in feline lentiviral genomes during experimental cross-species infection.
Virology. 2006
PMID: 17046045

3. Troyer JL, Pecon-Slattery J, Roelke ME, Johnson W, VandeWoude S, Vazquez-Salat N, Brown M, Frank L, Woodroffe R, Winterbach C, Winterbach H, Hemson G, Bush M, Alexander KA, Revilla E, O'Brien SJ.
Seroprevalence and genomic divergence of circulating strains of feline immunodeficiency virus among Felidae and Hyaenidae species.
J Virol. 2005 Jul;79(13):8282-94.
PMID: 15956574

4. Shimano R, Inubushi R, Amano K, Ogasawa T, Adachi A.
Gag-Pol region determines the tropism of SIVagm for human cells.
Virus Genes. 1998;16(2):137-9.
PMID: 9608656

Darin Brown


A cursory scan of information on the internet reveals that much of the thinking on "FIV" is slightly suspicious when compared to thinking on "HIV", with similar criticisms/problems:

From "SouthPaws Veterinary Referral Center":

"FIV infection is associated with neurologic disease, chronic renal failure, cancers (especially lymphoma), stomatitis (mouth and gum disease), respiratory conditions, diarrhea, urinary disorders, and wasting syndromes."

In other words, "FIV" is just as amorphous in clinical presentation as the infamous "HIV".

I see from "What You Should Know About Feline AIDS; Feline Immunodeficiency Virus By: PetPlace Staff":

"The virus devastates a cat's immune system, stopping it from effectively combating other diseases and infections. Infected cats eventually fall prey to a wide variety of secondary illnesses that overwhelmingly prove fatal. There is no cure, but cats can live for up to 10 years – much of it in seeming good health – before succumbing."

Given that 20 years is a long life for felines, this is the equivalent of saying for humans, "There is no cure, but humans can live [with HIV] for up to 50 years - much of it in seeming good health - before succumbing."

An interesting story also appears at "Best Friends Animal Society":

"Despite what many people think, cats with this condition can live perfectly long, happy, healthy lives... I was on my way back to the sanctuary after a family visit in Colorado. Curled up beside me, purring contentedly, was Reggie, the cat nobody dared take in. You'd think he was an unexploded bomb or an X-rated movie... Make that FIV-rated... 'I once got a desperate e-mail from an 80-year-old woman," she told me. 'Her only cat had just been diagnosed with FIV. The cat was perfectly normal and healthy, but her veterinarian had suggested euthanizing him. The woman was desolated. She asked if we would take him at Best Friends. I said she should keep him. But it was my word against the vet's.''

An especially telling comment is given at the Wikipedia article on "FIV":

"FIV infects other feline species, and in fact is endemic in some large wild cats, such as African lions. Unlike domestic cats, these species do not necessarily exhibit symptoms, perhaps because they have developed evolutionary mutations that confer resistance."


An investigation of "FIV" reveals almost identical "thinking problems" as afflicts HIV: lack of a gold standard for antibody tests, lack of any plausible biological mechanism of the "slow virus" of "FIV", numerous "long-term nonprogressors" or "elite controllers", etc., etc.

It seems to me that "FIV/FAIDS" is more reasonably explained as a group-psychological "spill-over effect" from the AIDS phenomenon than any kind of novel "slow-virus" afflicting housecats.

Dr. Knobless Oblige

Dr. Duke!

How wonderful of you to join us. I have a copy of your book, and I must tell you that my competing theory detailed in other places on this weblog is far superior to your own in all ways.

However, I do not think that Otis will allow any further exchanges with you now*, so others should be warned before wasting their ATPs.

*Perhaps on a future weekend when the other news is slow.

Chris Tyler

I think the reason kitties across the world don't die from Feline AIDS is because they're not proned to snorting poppers when they have sex, doing lots of drugs while they have sex, get repeated bouts of std's and then get treated for all of them; they don't do chrystal meth and stay up for 2 or 3 days 'partying'; and they aren't pressured to go on a dissaster of a drug like AZT; they aren't subject to the fear associated with an unverified antibody test or constant worrying about their CD4 or 'viral load' levels.

It's amazing that just humans seem so succeptible to lentiviruses like 'HIV'.

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