More on the photo 25 June 2004
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Eleni Papadopulos-Eleopulos,
Department of Medical Physics, Royal Perth Hospital, Western Australia, 600,
Valendar F Turner, John Papadimitriou, Barry Page, David Causer, Helman Alfonso, Sam Mhlongo, Todd Miller, Christian Fiala

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Re: More on the photo

In her rapid response "Show me the photo please", 20th June, Pennee Atkinson asks for pictures showing "HIV" particles separate from the host cells and stressed "And please don't show me one of those pictures that are filled with things that would be acceptable in my recycling bin". In his rapid response "Re: Show me the photo please" Christopher Noble supplied two pictures published by Japanese researchers in 1981.

These pictures:

(i) are not of a unique retrovirus, "HIV" but of the unique retrovirus presently known as HTLV-I; (ii) "HIV" is said to be a lentivirus while HTLV-I is said to belong to the oncovirus subfamily of retroviruses; (iii) the pictures are from MT-1 cell cultures and thus "are filled with things", including cellular fragments and MT-1 cells.

Christopher Noble's pictures raise some interesting questions. Being HIV experts, Christopher Noble and Brian Foley undoubtedly are aware that the H9 cell line, like the MT-1 cell line, originated from patients with adult T4 cell leukaemia. This disease is said to be caused by HTLV-I. In fact, as far back as 1983 Gallo showed that the H9 cell line is infected with HTLV-I. The H9 cell line is the cell line most extensively used in HIV research. The questions then are (i) why have Christopher Noble and Brian Foley never mentioned that in the H9 cell line there is a "real soup" of retroviruses and (ii) how do Christopher Noble and Brian Foley distinguish between what is "HIV" and what is HTLV-I in this cell line?

When in support of the existence of "HIV", "HIV" experts give evidence like that of Christopher Noble, who needs dissidents?

Competing interests: None declared