There is no proof that HIV causes AIDS. In fact, all the epidemiological
and microbiological evidence taken together conclusively demonstrates
that HIV cannot cause AIDS or any other illness. The concept that
AIDS is caused by a virus is not a fact, but a belief that was introduced
at a 1984 press conference by Dr. Robert Gallo, a researcher employed
by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). (14)
HIV is a retrovirus, a type of virus studied meticulously during
two decades of federal health programs that centered around the
search for a cancer virus. The idea of contagious cancer was a popular
notion in the 1960s and 70s. Since retroviruses have no cell-killing
mechanisms, and cancer is a condition marked by rapid cell growth,
this type of virus was considered a viable candidate for the cause
of cancer. However, healthy people live in harmony with an uncountable
number of harmless retroviruses; some are infectious while others
are , produced by our own
DNA. (15) Few, if
any, retroviruses have been shown to cause disease in humans.
In the 1980s when the CDC began to direct its attention to AIDS,
Gallo and other cancer researchers switched their focus from cancer
to the newly identified dilemma called AIDS, and the same government
scientists who led the quest for a cancer virus began to search
for a virus that could cause AIDS.
On April 23, 1984, Gallo called an international press conference
in conjunction with the US Department of Health and Human Services
(HHS). He used this forum to announce his discovery of a new retrovirus
described as "the probable cause of AIDS." Although Gallo
presented no evidence to support his tentative assumption, the HHS
immediately characterized it as "another miracle of American
medicine...the triumph of science over a dreaded disease."
Later that same day, Gallo filed a patent for the antibody test
now known as the "AIDS test." By the following day, The
New York Times had turned Gallo's proposal into a certainty with
front page news of "the virus that causes AIDS," and all
funding for research into other possible causes of AIDS came to
an abrupt halt. (17)
By announcing his hypothesis
to the media without providing substantiating data,
Gallo violated a fundamental rule of the scientific process. Researchers
must first publish evidence for a hypothesis in a medical or scientific
journal, and document the research or experiments that were used
to construct it. Experts then examine and debate the hypothesis,
and attempt to duplicate the original experiments to confirm or
refute the original findings. Any new hypothesis must stand up to
the scrutiny of peer review and must be verified by successful experiments
before it can be considered a reasonable theory.
In the case of HIV, Gallo announced an unconfirmed hypothesis to
the media who reported his idea as if it were an established fact,
inciting government officials to launch new public health policies
based on the unsubstantiated notion of an AIDS virus. Some attribute
these violations of the scientific process to the atmosphere of
terror and desperation that surrounded the notion of an infectious
The data Gallo used to construct his HIV/AIDS hypothesis were published
several days after his announcement. Rather than supporting his
hypothesis, this paper revealed that Gallo was unable to find HIV
(actual virus) in more than half of the AIDS patients in his study.
(18) While he was able to detect antibodies in most, antibodies
alone are not an indication of current infection and are actually
an indication of immunity from infection.
His paper also failed to provide a credible explanation as to how
a retrovirus could cause AIDS. Gallo suggested that HIV worked by
destroying immune cells, but 70 years of medical research had shown
that retroviruses are unable to kill cells, and he offered no proof
that HIV differed from other harmless retroviruses. In fact, all
evidence to date conclusively demonstrates that HIV -- like all
retroviruses -- is not .
focus of questions about HIV quickly shifted from how it could cause
AIDS to who found the now valuable viral commodity after Dr. Luc
Montagnier of the Pasteur Institute in France accused Gallo of stealing
his HIV sample. A congressional investigation determined that Gallo
had presented fraudulent data in his original paper on HIV, and
that the virus he claimed to have discovered had been sent to him
by Montagnier. (19) Negotiations were conducted between the French
and American governments to establish discovery and patent rights.
(20) These ended in a compromise, with Montagnier and Gallo sharing
credit as the codiscoverers of HIV and ownership rights to the HIV
test. Montagnier has since stated that he does not believe HIV alone
is capable of causing AIDS. (21)
Since 1984, more than 100,000 papers have been published on HIV.
None of these papers, singly or collectively, has been able to reasonably
demonstrate or effectively prove that HIV causes AIDS. Although
Gallo claimed that HIV caused AIDS by destroying the T cells of
the immune system, 20 years of cancer research confirmed that retroviruses
are not cytotoxic. In fact, there is still no evidence in the scientific
literature demonstrating that HIV is able to destroy T cells, directly
HIV to Varicella Zoster Virus (VZV), the known cause of chicken
pox, highlights some of the ways in which HIV defies rules of science
HIV is the only virus that is said to cause a group of diseases
caused by other viruses and bacteria rather than causing its own
disease. AIDS experts also say that HIV is able to cause cell depletion
-- loss of immune cells -- at the same time it causes cell proliferation
Although more research money has been spent on HIV than on the
combined total of all other viruses studied in medical history,
there is no scientific evidence validating the hypothesis that HIV
is the cause of AIDS, or that AIDS has a viral cause. A good hypothesis
is defined by its ability to solve problems and mysteries, make
accurate predictions and produce results. The HIV hypothesis has
failed to meet any of these criteria.
Hundreds of scientists around the world are now requesting an official
reevaluation of the HIV hypothesis. For more information on their
efforts visit the web of Professor
from within; originating within an organ or part.
DNA: The commonly used abbreviation
for deoxyribonucleic acid, the principle carrier of genetic information
in almost all organisms. DNA controls a cell's activities by specifying
and regulating the synthesis of enzymes and other proteins in the
Hypothesis: An unproven assumption
tentatively accepted as a basis for further investigation and argument.
Able to kill or damage cells.
HIV is not on the rise. According to the most recent CDC estimates,
the number of HIV positive Americans has not increased
once since the HIV test was introduced into general use in 1985.
In 1986, the CDC began promoting the estimate that 1 million to
1.5 million Americans were HIV positive. (33) Media and AIDS organizations
employed this figure to make the disturbing claim that one in every
250 people in the nation was infected with HIV. Four years later,
official estimates were lowered to between 800,000 and 1.2 million,
and in 1995, following an investigation by NBC Nightly News, the
CDC again decreased their official estimate to between 650,000 and
900,000, a figure still promoted today. (33, 34)
While the number of HIV positives has failed to grow, it is important
to note that rates of venereal diseases such as chlamydia, genital
herpes, gonorrhea and syphilis have increased throughout most of
the AIDS epidemic and far surpass cases of AIDS. These numbers contradict
the idea that "safe sex" has prevented HIV from spreading.
For more than a decade, scientists throughout the world agreed
that HIV had a latency period, a time during which it remained inactive
before becoming active and causing immune destruction. The notion
of a latency period was used to explain why HIV did not behave like
all other infectious, disease-causing microbes that cause illness
soon after infection, and why significant quantities of active HIV
could not be found in people who test HIV positive.
At first, HIV's latency period was thought to be a few months long.
(82) It was then revised to one year, then two, then three and five
years. (83) As greater numbers of people who tested HIV positive
did not develop AIDS as predicted, the latency period was extended
to ten or fifteen years, and more recently, even to entire lifetimes.
Just when HIV's growing latency period became the focus of mounting
scrutiny, it was replaced with the concept of constantly active
HIV that replicates and destroys cells at spectacular rates, a hypothesis
known as "viral load." The media, government health agencies,
AIDS organizations, and most AIDS doctors have uncritically accepted
the viral load concept as fact. Proponents of viral load assert
that HIV is rampant and destructive from the very moment of infection,
and that the immune system of a person who tests positive is engaged
in a perpetual struggle to keep the virus under control. They claim
that HIV, after five, ten or fifteen years, eventually wins the
battle by wearing out the immune system.
Viral load relies entirely on conclusions drawn from polymerase
chain reaction (PCR) tests, and is based on the
erroneous notion that the fragments of genetic material PCR finds
correspond to counts of actual virus. In fact, PCR is unable to
detect actual virus; it only amplifies genetic material associated
with HIV (RNA or DNA) and the "load" produced by the test
is a mathematical calculation, not a count of infectious virus.
When standard methods of virus counting are applied, a viral load
of 100,000 has been shown to correspond to less than ten infectious
units of HIV, an amount that is far too small to induce illness.
Contrary to popular belief, PCR cannot determine what portion,
if any, of the genetic material it detects represents infectious
virus. In fact more than 99% of what PCR measures is noninfectious.
(86) Dr. Kary Mullis, who won the 1993 Nobel Prize for inventing
PCR is a member of The Group for the Scientific Reappraisal of the
HIV/AIDS Hypothesis and refutes those who claim that HIV is the
causative agent of AIDS. (87)
Viral loads have been measured in people who are HIV negative and
in AIDS patients who test HIV antibody positive but have no HIV.
(88) Low levels of viral load have not been correlated with good
health, with absence of illness or high T cell counts while high
viral loads do not correspond with low T cells or sickness. (89)
For more information, please see What's Up with Viral Load? on page
Polymerase chain reaction
(PCR): A technique used to detect the presence of minute
quantities of genetic material in the blood through replication
of DNA or RNA.