Re: Re: Re: Re: Clinical trials of antioxidants 17 February 2005
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Gregory P Benvenuti,
Process Engineer
Johannesburg, South Africa

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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Clinical trials of antioxidants

In the vein of this discussion on antioxidants I found this pearler on PubMed entitled "How HIV causes AIDS: implications for Prevention and treatment" by Foster HD. Now isn't that the million dollar question? The abstract reads as follows.

"HIV-1 encodes for one of the human glutathione peroxidases. As a consequence, as it is replicated, its genetic needs cause it to deprive HIV-1 seropositive individuals not only of glutathione peroxidase, but also of the four basic components of this selenoenzyme, namely selenium, cysteine, glutamine, and tryptophan. Eventually this depletion process causes severe deficiencies of all these substances. These, in turn, are responsible for the major symptoms of AIDS which include immune system collapse, greater susceptibility to cancer and myocardial infarction, muscle wasting, depression, diarrhea, psychosis and dementia. As the immune system fails, associated pathogenic cofactors become responsible for a variety of their own unique symptoms. Any treatment for HIV/AIDS must, therefore, include normalization of body levels of glutathione, glutathione peroxidase, selenium, cysteine, glutamine, and tryptophan. Although various clinical trials have improved the health of AIDS patients by correcting one or more of these nutritional deficiencies, they have not, until the present, been addressed together. Physicians involved in a selenium and amino-acid field trial in Botswana, however, are reporting that this nutritional protocol reverses AIDS in 99% of patients receiving it, usually within three weeks."

Oh really? So it IS antioxidant deficiency that causes AIDS after all. Um, isn't that what the Perth Group have been saying for over 20 years? But this Foster guy can't be an AIDS denialist because he hedges his bets by blaming HIV for decreasing glutathione levels (probably the only way he would get his article published). Of course, another fabulous trait of the all singing all dancing virus. This is all the more interesting in the light of SC De Rosa's observation in his clinical trial "GSH replenishment in HIV infection" (European Journal of Clinical Investigation. 30, 915-929) where it is stated in the results section: " Interestingly, the baseline values for GSH were significantly lower among subjects who were taking AZT or other nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTI) than subjects not taking these drugs (respectively, n=27 and 26: median baseline GSH, 0.8 and 0.98 P=0.02, Wilcoxon one way CHI squared)." Hmmmm... so HIV causes a decrease in GSH which leads to AIDS; and people who have AIDS and who are taking AIDS drugs have lower GSH than those who are not. Thus it would seem that once again the AIDS denialists are vindicated.... AZT and its brothers accellerate the onset of AIDS becuase they lower GSH, the levels of which determine the progression to AIDS. What's also quite amusing is that HIV-1 apparently encodes for glutathione peroxidase as it's being replicated. But hang about, I thought that's what AIDS drugs stop the virus from doing. This also doesn't tie up with de Rosa's observations that those on NRTI's have lower GSH. They should have higher GSH if their drugs are stopping the virus from replicating. Erm, maybe the AIDS denialists were right again - NRTI's do not stop viral replication, maybe they just bugger up all the cellular processes and that is the real reason for the lower GSH in the poor souls on NRTI's.

What I wonder is what happens then to all those other millions of theories of how the "virus" induces programmed cell death and why only CD4 cells supposedly are decreased in "infected" people. Now that we've discovered that HIV-1 genetically codes for glutathione peroxidase why has NAC treatment not been rolled out? The trials have been done, almost ten years ago. We now have a so-called "mechanism" for the disease and a well run trial proving that the increasing GSH improves clinical and health outcomes.

James Whitehead, don't hold your breath for any more trials, they won't be forthcoming. BigPharma can't make money out of nutritional therapies.

Competing interests: None declared