Re: Re: Re: Questions That Should Remain Unanswered by Peter Flegg 6 May 2004
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Julian Turningheart,
Gainesville, FL 32608

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Re: Re: Re: Re: Questions That Should Remain Unanswered by Peter Flegg

Dear Editor,

I thank Dr. Foley for providing references in response to my request for evidence of the sexual transmission of HIV (6 May 2004). I look forward to analyzing them with a sincere effort to determine whether or not they provide “proof positive” for such transmission. Before proceeding, however, I would like to confirm with Dr. Foley that he will stand by these references in the event that they are shown to be lacking with respect to establishing sexual transmission of HIV. I ask for this confirmation for several reasons. First, the earliest reference he provided dates from 1994, even though, theoretically, the proof for sexual transmission should have been established much earlier than that. Second, if I (or the Perth Group, or anyone else) spends time analyzing these references and they are shown to be lacking, then it would be nice not to be confronted with an additional list of similar references that don’t add anything substantive to the issue at hand. Finally, I will –and in my opinion, others should- analyze these references as a jealous defender of the null hypothesis. That is, these references must attain a high level of scientific rigor to be considered “proof positive” of sexual transmission. Retrospective, correlative studies in which sexual transmission is assumed at the outset is probably not rigorous enough for most disinterested observers.

I invite Dr. Foley to revise, if he wishes, his list of references to include the most rigorous demonstrations of sexual transmission of HIV. Otherwise, I will commence forthwith to study the citations already provided.

Competing interests: None declared