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FTR #682 Update on AIDS as a Man Made Disease

MP3 [1] (One 30-minute seg­ment)
NB: This stream con­tains FTRs 681 and 682 in sequence. Each is a 30-minute seg­ment.

Intro­duc­tion: Con­tin­u­ing a decades-long explo­ration of evi­dence that AIDS was delib­er­ate­ly cre­at­ed, this broad­cast high­lights some of the qua­si-eugenic aspects of the dis­ease, as well as the “mon­key-virus” con­nec­tion to the AIDS inves­ti­ga­tion.

The pro­gram begins with a look at an excerpt from tes­ti­mo­ny before a House appro­pri­a­tions sub­com­mit­tee that was draw­ing up the defense bud­get for the fol­low­ing year. (The hear­ings were in 1969.) The tes­ti­mo­ny dis­cuss­es the pos­si­bil­i­ty of using genet­ic engi­neer­ing to pro­duce a dis­ease that would be “refrac­to­ry” to the immune sys­tem. This is vir­tu­al­ly the clin­i­cal def­i­n­i­tion of AIDS. It is worth not­ing that the project was fund­ed, and just such a disease—AIDS—appeared in just the time frame posit­ed.

Next, the pro­gram sets forth an impor­tant new devel­op­ment with regard to CCR5 delta-32–a gene that affords immu­ni­ty to infec­tion by HIV. That gene is found almost exclu­sive­ly in peo­ple of North­ern Euro­pean extrac­tion. It is the “Aryan gene.” After review­ing infor­ma­tion about CCR5 delta-32 from FTR #606 [2], the pro­gram notes the appli­ca­tion of CCR5 delta-32 to AIDS ther­a­py.

In June of 2009, it emerged that CCR5 delta-32 was used in trans­plant ther­a­py [3] admin­is­tered by a Ger­man doc­tor to an HIV-pos­i­tive leukemia patient. It appears that the patient was cured of HIV! The Ger­man doc­tor delib­er­ate­ly select­ed a CCR5 delta-32 pos­i­tive donor for the stem cells used for the trans­plant. Dr. Gup­ta, quot­ed in the fol­low­ing arti­cle, won­ders why more pub­lic­i­ty wasn’t afford­ed this event. Why indeed?

Where­as some “Aryans” pos­sess a gene that ren­ders them immune from HIV infec­tion, the oppo­site is the case for black folks. The pro­gram reviews (from FTR #642 [4]) infor­ma­tion about a hered­i­tary sus­cep­ti­bil­i­ty to HIV infec­tion among peo­ple of African extrac­tion. A gene that affords peo­ple of African extrac­tion a mea­sure of pro­tec­tion against malar­ia infec­tion ren­ders them par­tic­u­lar­ly vul­ner­a­ble to HIV.

Turn­ing to the sub­ject of SIV (Simi­an Immun­od­e­fi­cien­cy Virus), the broad­cast notes its dis­cov­ery fol­low­ing an out­break in pri­mate lab­o­ra­to­ries in the Unit­ed States. Spread­ing to pri­mate species with no expo­sure to, or anti­bod­ies to, the virus, SIV cre­at­ed an out­break of dis­ease among mon­keys in the lab­o­ra­to­ry.

Not­ing a recent report attempt­ing to link AIDS in humans with SIV in chim­panzees, the pro­gram reviews infor­ma­tion dis­cussed with Ed Haslam [5] about the premise for this “dis­cov­ery.” Dr. Beat­rice Hahn had pre­vi­ous­ly report­ed the dis­cov­ery of HIV present in chim­panzees. Ed notes that the chimps she had been test­ing had been delib­er­ate­ly infect­ed with the virus in an Air Force lab­o­ra­to­ry in New Mex­i­co, at which chimps were kept in “nat­ur­al” con­di­tions. These “nat­ur­al” con­di­tions for chim­panzee colonies entail the alpha male of the colony hav­ing sex with all of the females, there­by spread­ing any sex­u­al­ly trans­mit­ted virus­es!

Turn­ing to a pri­ma­ry area of the­o­ret­i­cal inquiry, the pro­gram notes that the Nazis began research­ing tox­ic agents on apes and then moved on to humans—inmates in con­cen­tra­tion camps. AIDS results from a mon­key virus that even­tu­al­ly jumped to humans as well. Does the pro­gres­sion in the Nazi death camps of test­ing on apes to test­ing on humans have any rela­tion­ship with the pro­gres­sion of a simi­an virus to infec­tion of humans? Might the cre­ation of AIDS have stemmed from Nazi research? Is it an acci­dent that the hered­i­tary immu­ni­ty from HIV infec­tion is only present in the white race, and [accord­ing to some sources] North­ern Euro­peans in par­tic­u­lar? Is it an acci­dent that peo­ple of African extrac­tion are par­tic­u­lar­ly sus­cep­ti­ble to HIV infec­tion?

Turn­ing to a pri­ma­ry ele­ment of analy­sis, the pro­gram reviews the career of an inter­est­ing and [pos­si­bly] very sig­nif­i­cant indi­vid­ual. Franz Liesau Zacharias was a Ger­man intel­li­gence agent sta­tioned in Spain. Among the duties he per­formed for the Nazis was obtain­ing ani­mals, includ­ing apes, for exper­i­men­tal pur­pos­es. Note that the ani­mals were to be used in exper­i­ments used for devel­op­ing dis­eases for test­ing on con­cen­tra­tion inmates.

Among the dis­eases that Liesau Zacharias’ ani­mals were used for test­ing was “the plague”! Did the Nazis note that some peo­ple appeared to be immune to infec­tion with plague? Were tis­sue and/or sera sam­ples tak­en and pre­served for fur­ther study? Was this in any way con­nect­ed to the even­tu­al evo­lu­tion of the CCR5-delta 32 gene as a hered­i­tary pro­tec­tion against infec­tion by HIV? Is it pos­si­ble that Liesau Zacharias was actu­al­ly tar­get­ed for recruit­ment by the U.S. for Project Paper­clip? Did Liesau Zacharias expe­ri­ence an out­break of immun­od­e­fi­cien­cy among his pri­mates await­ing ship­ment to Ger­many? Might such an out­break have been due to SIV? Did Liesau Zacharias take tis­sue and sera sam­ples from infect­ed pri­mates? Might such a devel­op­ment have been relat­ed to his impor­tance to the Allies?

The pro­gram con­cludes with review of Ed Haslsm’s mus­ing con­cern­ing SIV and the con­t­a­m­i­na­tion of the polio vac­cine with simi­an virus­es. Ed the­o­rizes that AIDS may have stemmed from the irra­di­a­tion of virus­es under the janus-faced can­cer research/biological war­fare project dis­cussed in Dr. Mary’s Mon­key: Did that irra­di­a­tion pro­duce a mutat­ed SIV which could infect humans and which result­ed in the AIDS epi­dem­ic?

Pro­gram High­lights Include: Dis­cus­sion of the pos­si­bil­i­ty that some of the suc­ces­sor com­pa­nies to I.G. Far­ben might mar­ket the CCR5 delta-32 stem cell ther­a­py for AIDS; review of those com­pa­nies’ links to the Bor­mann cap­i­tal net­work and the Under­ground Reich. Lis­ten­ers are emphat­i­cal­ly encour­aged to read a con­sum­mate­ly impor­tant arti­cle [6] that details the Nation­al Can­cer Insti­tute’s Viral Can­cer Research Pro­gram, which was at the epi­cen­ter of U.S. AIDS research, includ­ing the “dis­cov­ery” of HIV. That pro­gram is inex­tri­ca­bly linked to the milieu of bio­log­i­cal war­fare research. As dis­cussed in FTR #606, the Third Reich’s bio­log­i­cal war­fare pro­gram was dis­guised as a can­cer research pro­gram.

1. The pro­gram begins with a look at an excerpt from tes­ti­mo­ny before a House appro­pri­a­tions sub­com­mit­tee that was draw­ing up the defense bud­get for the fol­low­ing year. (The hear­ings were in 1969.) The tes­ti­mo­ny dis­cuss­es the pos­si­bil­i­ty of using genet­ic engi­neer­ing to pro­duce a dis­ease that would be “refrac­to­ry” to the immune sys­tem. This is vir­tu­al­ly the clin­i­cal def­i­n­i­tion of AIDS. It is worth not­ing that the project was fund­ed, and just such a disease—AIDS—appeared in just the time frame posit­ed. It is also worth not­ing that, in the 2002 edi­tion of A High­er Form of Killing [7], this pas­sage is omit­ted!!

“. . . As long ago as 1962, forty sci­en­tists were employed at the U.S. Army bio­log­i­cal war­fare lab­o­ra­to­ries on full-time genet­ics research. ‘Many oth­ers,’ it was said, ‘appre­ci­ate the impli­ca­tions of genet­ics for their own work.’ The impli­ca­tions were made more spe­cif­ic that genet­ic engi­neer­ing could solve one of the major dis­ad­van­tages of bio­log­i­cal war­fare, that it is lim­it­ed to dis­eases which occur nat­u­ral­ly some­where in the world. ‘With­in the next 5 to 10 years, it would prob­a­bly be pos­si­ble to make a new infec­tive micro-organ­ism which could dif­fer in cer­tain impor­tant respects from any known dis­ease-caus­ing organ­isms. Most impor­tant of these is that it might be refrac­to­ry to the immuno­log­i­cal and ther­a­peu­tic process­es upon which we depend to main­tain our rel­a­tive free­dom from infec­tious dis­ease.’ [Ital­ics are Mr. Emory’s.] The pos­si­bil­i­ty that such a ‘super germ’ may have been suc­cess­ful­ly pro­duced in a lab­o­ra­to­ry some­where in the world in the years since that assess­ment was made is one which should not be too read­i­ly cast aside. . .”

(A High­er Form of Killing; Robert Har­ris and Jere­my Pax­man; Hill and Wang [SC]; ISBN 0–8090-5471‑X; p. 241.) [7]

2. Next, the pro­gram sets forth an impor­tant new devel­op­ment with regard to CCR5 delta-32–a gene that affords immu­ni­ty to infec­tion by HIV. That gene is found almost exclu­sive­ly in peo­ple of North­ern Euro­pean extrac­tion. It is the “Aryan gene.” After review­ing infor­ma­tion about CCR5 delta-32 from FTR #606 [2], the pro­gram notes the appli­ca­tion of CCR5 delta-32 to AIDS ther­a­py.

In June of 2009, it emerged that CCR5 delta-32 was used in trans­plant ther­a­py [3] admin­is­tered by a Ger­man doc­tor to an HIV-pos­i­tive leukemia patient. It appears that the patient was cured of HIV! The Ger­man doc­tor delib­er­ate­ly select­ed a CCR5 delta-32 pos­i­tive donor for the stem cells used for the trans­plant. Dr. Gup­ta, quot­ed in the fol­low­ing arti­cle, won­ders why more pub­lic­i­ty wasn’t afford­ed this event. Why indeed? Might wider pub­lic­i­ty have called undue atten­tion to this curi­ous fea­ture of the AIDS epidemic–that “Aryans” have an immu­ni­ty to this dis­ease?

Anoth­er point of inter­est will be to see if some of the suc­ces­sor firms to the old I.G. Far­ben car­tel wind up mar­ket­ing this AIDS ther­a­py, pred­i­cat­ed on the use of stem cells from CCR5 delta-32 donors. As dis­cussed in Mar­tin Bor­mann: Nazi in Exile [8], the I.G. and its suc­ces­sor com­pa­nies are inex­tri­ca­bly linked with the Under­ground Reich. (The I.G.–Underground Reich axis is dis­cussed in–among oth­er programs–FTR #‘s 305 [9], 576 [10].

A Foley [Alaba­ma] physi­cian said what appears to be the first case of HIV/AIDS cure in the world is get­ting lit­tle men­tion in the media.

Dr. Awad­hesh K. Gup­ta, med­ical direc­tor at Foley Walk-In Med Care, said he first heard of the med­ical break­through in April when he attend­ed the Annu­al Con­fer­ence of the Amer­i­can Col­lege of Physi­cians in Inter­nal Med­i­cine in Philadel­phia.

It’s a con­fer­ence Gup­ta tries to attend every year.

“This is the most pres­ti­gious orga­ni­za­tion of physi­cians in Inter­nal Med­i­cine and is respon­si­ble for cer­ti­fy­ing post grad­u­ate train­ing in Inter­nal Med­i­cine. It is also one of the old­est,” he said.

Accord­ing to Gup­ta, who has been prac­tic­ing med­i­cine in the South Bald­win area since 1997, the cure was first report­ed in ear­ly 2008 by a group of physi­cians from Ger­many at the annu­al con­fer­ence on “Retro­virus­es and Oppor­tunis­tic Infec­tions” in Boston. The New Eng­land Jour­nal of Med­i­cine, one of the most pres­ti­gious med­ical jour­nals in the world, final­ly pub­lished the report in its Feb. 12, 2009, issue, Gup­ta said.

So why has the news of the first case of HIV/AIDS cure received so lit­tle atten­tion where the pub­lic is con­cerned?

“I can’t be sure as to why so lit­tle pub­lic­i­ty,” Gup­ta said recent­ly.

“My guess is that most sci­en­tif­ic researchers are some­what stunned that a clin­i­cian — not a research sci­en­tist — has been able to come up with the cure. Most of the big research mon­ey and big name Amer­i­can insti­tu­tions are some­what embar­rassed to acknowl­edge that the very first case of HIV cure is not com­ing from their insti­tu­tions.”

The cure, instead, is com­ing from Char­i­ty Uni­ver­si­ty Hos­pi­tal in Berlin, Ger­many, and the doc­tor is Gero Huet­ter, who works in the Depart­ment of Hema­tol­ogy, Oncol­o­gy and Trans­fu­sion Med­i­cine at the same hos­pi­tal.

Asked about the reac­tion of atten­dees at the med­ical con­fer­ence in Philadel­phia as regard­ed the news of an HIV/AIDS cure, Gup­ta said, “Unfor­tu­nate­ly, because of the hec­tic sched­ule, I did not try to engage too many physi­cians. How­ev­er, the doc­tor pre­sent­ing this infor­ma­tion seemed extreme­ly excit­ed about it.”

As Gup­ta explains the case and cure in ques­tion, a 40-year-old Amer­i­can work­ing in Berlin had been HIV-pos­i­tive for 10 years. The patient’s HIV infec­tion had been under con­trol for four years with “con­ven­tion­al HAART treat­ment reg­i­men” (High­ly Active Anti-Retro­vi­ral Ther­a­py).

When the patient devel­oped leukemia, how­ev­er, a bone mar­row trans­plant of stem cells was done using stan­dard pro­to­col, which Gup­ta said includes radi­a­tion ther­a­py and chemother­a­py pri­or to the trans­plant.

“Remem­ber, once you stop HIV drugs, the HIV viral count ris­es very rapid­ly, usu­al­ly with­in a few days to a week,” Gup­ta said.

Accord­ing to Gup­ta, Huet­ter, the Ger­man physi­cian treat­ing the Amer­i­can, delib­er­ate­ly chose a stem cell donor who had a gene muta­tion known as “CCR‑5 Delta- 32,” rather than using the best matched donor.

Gup­ta said Huet­ter remem­bered research first observed in 1996 — research Gup­ta said is well known in the sci­en­tif­ic com­mu­ni­ty. That research found that cer­tain gay men in the San Fran­cis­co area remained unin­fect­ed with HIV in spite of engag­ing in risky sex­u­al activ­i­ties. As it was lat­er dis­cov­ered, those men had the CCR‑5 Delta-32 gene muta­tion.

As it turned out, the patient’s stem cell trans­plant was a suc­cess, Gup­ta said, even though the patient had to have a sec­ond stem cell trans­plant (from the same donor) when his leukemia relapsed.

“This patient has been off all his HIV drugs for two years now,” Gup­ta said. “He con­tin­ues to show no detectable signs of HIV in all the known places HIV is detect­ed — no signs of HIV in his blood, bone mar­row, lymph nodes, intestines or brain.” Also, the patient’s T‑cell count remains nor­mal.

Thus, accord­ing to Gup­ta, with­in the lim­its of sci­en­tists’ abil­i­ty to detect HIV, it appears this patient’s HIV has been “erad­i­cat­ed.”. . .

“Local Physician:HIV/AIDS Cure Get­ting Lit­tle Pub­lic­i­ty” by Bob Mor­gan; baldwincountynow.com; 5/27/2009. [3]

3. The pro­gram reviews (from FTR #642 [4]) infor­ma­tion about a hered­i­tary sus­cep­ti­bil­i­ty to HIV infec­tion among peo­ple of African extrac­tion. A gene that affords peo­ple of African extrac­tion a mea­sure of pro­tec­tion against malar­ia infec­tion ren­ders them par­tic­u­lar­ly vul­ner­a­ble to HIV.

“An inter­na­tion­al team of AIDS sci­en­tists has dis­cov­ered that a gene vari­ant com­mon in blacks pro­tects against cer­tain types of malar­ia but increas­es sus­cep­ti­bil­i­ty to HIV infec­tion by 40 per­cent.

Researchers, keen to find some bio­log­i­cal clues to explain why peo­ple of African descent are bear­ing a dis­pro­por­tion­ate share of the world’s AIDS cas­es, sus­pect this sub­tle genet­ic trait — found in 60 per­cent of Amer­i­can blacks and 90 per­cent of Africans — might part­ly explain the dif­fer­ence.

Ten per­cent of the world’s pop­u­la­tion lives in sub-Saha­ran Africa, but that region accounts for 70 per­cent of the men, women and chil­dren liv­ing with HIV infec­tion. In the Unit­ed States, African Amer­i­cans make up 12 per­cent of the pop­u­la­tion but account for half of new­ly diag­nosed HIV infec­tions. . . .”

“New­found Genet­ic Clue to HIV Rate Among Blacks” by Sabin Rus­sell; San Fran­cis­co Chron­i­cle; 7/17/08; p. A1. [11]

4. Turn­ing to the sub­ject of SIV (Simi­an Immuno-Defi­cien­cy Virus), the broad­cast notes its dis­cov­ery fol­low­ing an out­break in pri­mate lab­o­ra­to­ries in the Unit­ed States. Spread­ing to pri­mate species with no expo­sure to, or anti­bod­ies to, the virus, SIV cre­at­ed an out­break of dis­ease among mon­keys in the lab­o­ra­to­ry.

Research on an AIDS-like dis­ease in mon­keys con­tin­ues to help sci­en­tists under­stand prob­lems such as how HIV caus­es AIDS, how the virus “hides” from the immune sys­tem and how the dis­ease might be pre­vent­ed or treat­ed, two decades after the human and mon­key dis­eases were iden­ti­fied.

“These ani­mals have been indis­pens­able for under­stand­ing how the virus works and in work­ing toward vac­cines,” said Mur­ray Gard­ner, pro­fes­sor emer­i­tus of med­ical pathol­o­gy at the UC Davis Cen­ter for Com­par­a­tive Med­i­cine.

About 300 researchers from around the world will reflect on those past achieve­ments and dis­cuss new data when they gath­er Sept. 8–11 in Mon­terey, Calif., for the 20th Annu­al Sym­po­sium on Non­hu­man Pri­mate Mod­els for AIDS. The Cal­i­for­nia Nation­al Pri­mate Research Cen­ter (CNPRC) at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia, Davis, is host­ing the con­fer­ence.

More than 20 years ago, sci­en­tists at the UC Davis pri­mate cen­ter were con­front­ed with a mys­te­ri­ous and dead­ly out­break of infec­tions in their mon­keys. Show­ing signs of weak­ened immune sys­tems, the mon­keys were suc­cumb­ing to a vari­ety of infec­tions that nor­mal­ly did not cause dis­ease.

At about the same time, a dead­ly new dis­ease known as AIDS was mak­ing the head­lines. Bear­ing a strik­ing resem­blance to the mon­key syn­drome, the human dis­ease also led to oppor­tunis­tic infec­tions, wast­ing and death.

Sci­en­tists would lat­er dis­cov­er that the mon­key dis­ease, called simi­an AIDS, was caused by the simi­an immun­od­e­fi­cien­cy virus (SIV), a close rel­a­tive of the human immun­od­e­fi­cien­cy virus (HIV) that caus­es human AIDS.

The strik­ing sim­i­lar­i­ties between the human and simi­an dis­or­ders and the virus­es that cause them enabled sci­en­tists to gain oth­er­wise unob­tain­able insights into the ori­gins and pro­gres­sion of human AIDS — work that con­tin­ues today.

Today, sci­en­tists at the UC Davis cen­ter are using the SIV mon­key mod­el of AIDS to study ways to vac­ci­nate against HIV trans­mis­sion from adult to adult and from moth­er to off­spring. They are also tack­ling the prob­lem of elim­i­nat­ing latent virus — virus that is inac­tive and “hid­ing” inside cells in the body — in indi­vid­u­als tak­ing med­ica­tions to fight the virus. Final­ly, they are test­ing the abil­i­ty of micro­bi­cides to pre­vent sex­u­al trans­mis­sion of SIV/HIV.

“The mon­key dis­ease is a remark­ably accu­rate fac­sim­i­le of the human dis­ease,” said Gard­ner.

An author­i­ty on retro­virus­es and the inter­sec­tion of the simi­an and human immun­od­e­fi­cien­cy virus­es, Gard­ner will give the keynote address at the con­fer­ence, high­light­ing impor­tant con­tri­bu­tions of non­hu­man pri­mate research to knowl­edge of AIDS.

Accord­ing to Gard­ner, some of the key achieve­ments made by researchers study­ing immun­od­e­fi­cien­cy virus­es in mon­keys include: gain­ing an in-depth knowl­edge of the nat­ur­al his­to­ry of both the human and simi­an AIDS virus­es, includ­ing the poten­tial for and mech­a­nisms of cross-species trans­mis­sion; demon­strat­ing the fea­si­bil­i­ty of an AIDS vac­cine by show­ing that mon­keys became resis­tant to simi­an AIDS when inject­ed with weak­ened ver­sions of the virus; demon­strat­ing that SIV alone, rather than envi­ron­men­tal or oth­er fac­tors, caus­es simi­an AIDS; defin­ing the mech­a­nisms of HIV/SIV trans­mis­sion between hosts; and iden­ti­fy­ing the role of anti­bod­ies and cel­lu­lar immu­ni­ty, espe­cial­ly CD8 cells — a spe­cif­ic immune sys­tem com­po­nent — in fight­ing the virus.

The sym­po­sium traces its ori­gins to 1983, when about 30 researchers from the then sev­en U.S. pri­mate research cen­ters met at Tulane Uni­ver­si­ty to dis­cuss what was then a poor­ly under­stood, spon­ta­neous­ly occur­ring immun­od­e­fi­cien­cy syn­drome of macaque mon­keys. The mon­key dis­ease had many strong sim­i­lar­i­ties to AIDS, which was first described in 1981. HIV was first iden­ti­fied in 1983 and SIV in 1985. . . .

“Twen­ty Years of Mon­key Research boosts AIDS Knowl­edge”; Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia News­room; 8/27/2002. [12]

5. Not­ing a recent report attempt­ing to link AIDS in humans with SIV in chim­panzees, the pro­gram reviews infor­ma­tion dis­cussed with Ed Haslam about the premise for this “dis­cov­ery.” Detailed analy­sis of Ed Haslam’s debunk­ing of the chim­panzee the­o­ry can be accessed in FTR #269 [5]. Dr. Beat­rice Hahn had pre­vi­ous­ly report­ed the dis­cov­ery of HIV present in chim­panzees. Ed notes that the chimps she had been test­ing had been delib­er­ate­ly infect­ed with the virus in an Air Force lab­o­ra­to­ry in New Mex­i­co, at which chimps were kept in “nat­ur­al” con­di­tions. These “nat­ur­al” con­di­tions for chim­panzee colonies entails the alpha male of the colony hav­ing sex with all of the females, there­by spread­ing any sex­u­al­ly trans­mit­ted virus­es!

Although the AIDS virus (HIV‑1) entered the human pop­u­la­tion through chim­panzees, sci­en­tists have long believed that chim­panzees don’t devel­op AIDS. But a new study from an inter­na­tion­al team, includ­ing Uni­ver­si­ty of Min­neso­ta pro­fes­sors Anne Pusey and Michael Wil­son, shows that chim­panzees infect­ed with SIV (simi­an immun­od­e­fi­cien­cy virus), the pre­cur­sor to HIV‑1, do con­tract and die from AIDS. The dis­cov­ery is pub­lished in the July 23 issue of Nature.

The authors report that infect­ed chim­panzees in their study group were 10–16 times more like­ly to die than those who were unin­fect­ed. The team also found that infect­ed females were less like­ly to give birth and infants born to infect­ed moth­ers were unlike­ly to sur­vive. The virus, they learned, was trans­mit­ted sex­u­al­ly and through moth­er’s milk. Over the nine-year study peri­od, 10–20 per­cent of the 94 chim­panzees were infect­ed at any one time.

The find­ing opens up new oppor­tu­ni­ties for research.

“We hope this will lead to a bet­ter under­stand­ing of the virus that will ben­e­fit both humans and chim­panzees,” said Jane Goodall, whose focus has shift­ed in recent years from research to con­ser­va­tion of chim­panzees and their habi­tats.

The study focused on chim­panzees at Gombe Nation­al Park, Tan­za­nia, where Goodall and her col­leagues have stud­ied chim­panzees for near­ly 50 years. Researchers used data that Pusey, a long-time asso­ciate of Goodal­l’s, archived at the Jane Goodall Insti­tute’s Cen­ter for Pri­mate Stud­ies at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Min­neso­ta, to under­stand how SIV is trans­mit­ted among chim­panzees, and how the virus affects chim­panzee sur­vival and repro­duc­tion.

Virol­o­gist Beat­rice Hahn at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Alaba­ma led the Nature study, which involved Pusey and her col­leagues. Bran­don Keele and Rebec­ca Rudi­cell in Hah­n’s lab used tech­niques they devel­oped to detect SIV in chim­panzee fecal sam­ples. Sam­ples were col­lect­ed by research staff at Gombe and shipped to Alaba­ma for analy­sis.

Exam­i­na­tion of tis­sue sam­ples from dead chim­panzees revealed a loss of CD4+ T cells (which are vital to immu­ni­ty) in SIV-infect­ed chim­panzees. Loss of these cells ren­ders vic­tims sus­cep­ti­ble to many oth­er infec­tions – the clas­sic indi­ca­tion of AIDS. Wil­son orga­nized a team of Tan­zan­ian and Amer­i­can spe­cial­ists to con­duct the first post-mortem exam of a chim­panzee that died from AIDS.

“From a sci­en­tif­ic per­spec­tive, it is fas­ci­nat­ing to learn that the virus affects chim­panzees in sim­i­lar ways to humans,” Wil­son said. “But it is dif­fi­cult know­ing that there isn’t much we can do to help those whose lives may be short­ened by the virus.” Wil­son is a McK­night Land-Grant Pro­fes­sor with a joint appoint­ment in Anthro­pol­o­gy and Ecol­o­gy, Evo­lu­tion and Behav­ior.

“It isn’t prac­ti­cal to treat the chim­panzees for SIV infec­tions, but it appears that SIV in chim­panzees is not quite as path­o­gen­ic as HIV‑1 in humans,” said Pusey, who is a Dis­tin­guished McK­night Uni­ver­si­ty Pro­fes­sor in the Col­lege of Bio­log­i­cal Sci­ences Depart­ment of Ecol­o­gy, Evo­lu­tion and Behav­ior. “So far, the main study com­mu­ni­ty has main­tained its size despite mor­tal­i­ty from dis­eases.”

Includ­ing Pusey and Wil­son, six of the co-authors are asso­ci­at­ed with the Uni­ver­si­ty of Min­neso­ta. Doc­tor­al can­di­date Emi­ly Wrob­lews­ki sequenced DNA from fecal sam­ples. Research Admin­is­tra­tor Joann Schu­mach­er-Stankey pre­pared demo­graph­ic and behav­ioral data. Eliz­a­beth Lons­dorf (Ph.D. 2003) is now based at Lin­coln Park Zoo and leads a health-mon­i­tor­ing project at Gombe. Anna Moser (Ph.D. 2008) is direc­tor of Research at Gombe.

“Chim­panzees Infect­ed With SIV Do Devel­op and Die from AIDS, Con­trary to Pre­vail­ing View”; Sci­ence Dai­ly; 7/23/2009. [13]

6. Turn­ing to a pri­ma­ry area of the­o­ret­i­cal inquiry, the pro­gram notes that the Nazis began research­ing tox­ic agents on apes and then moved on to humans—inmates in con­cen­tra­tion camps. AIDS results from a mon­key virus that even­tu­al­ly jumped to humans as well. Does the pro­gres­sion in the Nazi death camps of test­ing on apes to test­ing on humans have any rela­tion­ship with the pro­gres­sion of a simi­an virus to infec­tion of humans? Might the cre­ation of AIDS have stemmed from Nazi research? Is it an acci­dent that the hered­i­tary immu­ni­ty from HIV infec­tion is only present in the white race, and [accord­ing to some sources] North­ern Euro­peans in par­tic­u­lar? Is it an acci­dent that peo­ple of African extrac­tion are par­tic­u­lar­ly sus­cep­ti­ble to HIV infec­tion?

“Guinea pigs and white rats, ani­mals tra­di­tion­al­ly used for test­ing pur­pos­es, were deemed inad­e­quate for mea­sur­ing the effect of the nerve gas­es on humans. Ear­ly in the war, it was decid­ed to sub­sti­tute apes, whose bio­log­i­cal reac­tions to such gas­es were believed to be more like those of human beings. How­ev­er, apes were not read­i­ly avail­able in Ger­many, and Speer’s office sup­plied 200,000 Swiss francs, a pre­cious for­eign cur­ren­cy, to buy them in Spain. They were trans­port­ed to Ger­many with great dif­fi­cul­ty; many died before the exper­i­ments were con­clud­ed (TWC I, p. 351, Brandt Doc­u­ment Book 12, Defense Exhib­it 11). Even­tu­al­ly it was decid­ed to exper­i­ment on con­cen­tra­tion camp Jews. It is sus­pect­ed that the test­ing of I.G.’s poi­son gas­es on humans was known in the high­est ech­e­lons of I.G. After the war, Georg von Schnit­zler swore that Ambros, Schmitz, and Ter Meer were aware of these activ­i­ties. Accord­ing to British intel­li­gence, one of them was report­ed to have ‘jus­ti­fied the exper­i­ments not only on the grounds that the inmates of con­cen­tra­tion camps would have been killed any­way by the Nazis, but also on the grounds that the exper­i­ments had a human­i­tar­i­an aspect in that the lives of count­less Ger­man work­ers were saved there­by’ (Hear­ings before a Sub­com­mit­tee of the Com­mit­tee on Mil­i­tary Affairs, U.S. Sen­ate, 79th Con­gress, 1st Ses­sion (1945), pur­suant to S. Res. 107 and 146, Elim­i­na­tion of Ger­man Resources for War, part X, p. 1276)”

(The Crime and Pun­ish­ment of I.G. Far­ben; Joseph Borkin; Copy­right 1978 [HC] by The Free Press [a divi­sion of MacMil­lan]; ISBN 0–02-904630–0; p. 132.) [14]

7. Turn­ing to a pri­ma­ry ele­ment of analy­sis, the pro­gram reviews the career of an inter­est­ing and [pos­si­bly] very sig­nif­i­cant indi­vid­ual. Franz Liesau Zacharias was a Ger­man intel­li­gence agent sta­tioned in Spain. Among the duties he per­formed for the Nazis was obtain­ing ani­mals, includ­ing apes, for exper­i­men­tal pur­pos­es. Note that the ani­mals were to be used in exper­i­ments used for devel­op­ing dis­eases for test­ing on con­cen­tra­tion inmates.

“One tor­tured French cit­i­zens in ice baths. Anoth­er was a Gestapo agent who packed bombs into crates of Span­ish oranges bound for Eng­land. They were just two of 104 Nazi secret agents in Spain whom the Allies sought near the end of World War II. But Span­ish dic­ta­tor Fran­cis­co Franco—Adolf Hitler’s ally—refused to hand them over, accord­ing to an inves­tiga­tive report by El País, a Madrid news­pa­per. . . .Anoth­er agent was Franz Liesau Zacharias, whose job fori Hitler’s Abwehr spy agency was to obtain mon­keys and oth­er ani­mals from Spain’s colonies in Africa. The ani­mals used for exper­i­ments in Ger­many aimed at man­u­fac­tur­ing killer dis­eases that were to be unleashed on con­cen­tra­tion camp inmates, El Pais report­ed. . . .”

(“Report: Spain Pro­tect­ed Under­cov­er Nazis from Allies” by Cia­ran Giles [AP]; Asso­ci­at­ed Press; 3/31/1997.)

8. Among the dis­eases that Liesau Zacharias’ ani­mals were used for test­ing was “the plague”! Did the Nazis note that some peo­ple appeared to be immune to infec­tion with plague? Were tis­sue sam­ples tak­en and pre­served for fur­ther study? Was this in any way con­nect­ed to the even­tu­al evo­lu­tion of the CCR5-delta 32 gene as a hered­i­tary pro­tec­tion against infec­tion by HIV? Is it pos­si­ble that Liesau Zacharias was actu­al­ly tar­get­ed for recruit­ment by the U.S. for Project Paper­clip, like Erich Traub? Did Liesau Zacharias expe­ri­ence an out­break of immun­od­e­fi­cien­cy among his pri­mates await­ing ship­ment to Ger­many? Might such an out­break have been due to SIV? Did Liesau Zacharias take tis­sue and sera sam­ples from infect­ed pri­mates? Might such a devel­op­ment have been relat­ed to his impor­tance to the Allies?

“ . . . Anoth­er ‘Ger­man on the list is Franz Liesau Zacharias, who died in Madrid in 1992 at the age of 84. A mem­ber of the Ger­man mil­i­tary intel­li­gence agency, the Abwehr, he had been in charge of obtain­ing ani­mals in Span­ish ter­ri­to­ries in Africa for exper­i­ments in Ger­many, the allies said. These exper­i­ments includ­ed ‘spread­ing hor­rif­ic dis­eases, such as the plague, in con­cen­tra­tion camps,’ the news­pa­per said. . . . It added that man of those on the list start­ed up busi­ness­es in Spain after the war, main­ly in the Basque coun­try. . . .”

(“Span­ish News­pa­per Pub­lish­es List of Nazis Pro­tect­ed by Fran­co”; Agence France Presse [Eng­lish]; 3/30/1997.)

9. The pro­gram con­cludes with review of Ed Haslsm’s mus­ing con­cern­ing SIV and the con­t­a­m­i­na­tion of the polio vac­cine with simi­an virus­es. Ed the­o­rizes that AIDS may have stemmed from the irra­di­a­tion of virus­es under the janus-faced can­cer research/biological war­fare project dis­cussed in Dr. Mary’s Mon­key: Did that irra­di­a­tion pro­duce a mutat­ed SIV which could infect humans and which result­ed in the AIDS epi­dem­ic?

” . . . SIV is the Simi­an Immun­od­e­fi­cien­cy Virus, one of sev­er­al mon­key Virus­es known to have con­t­a­m­i­nat­ed the polio vac­cine. The more car­cino­genic SV-40 has received most of the press. SIV, a sin­gle-strand RNA retro­virus, is con­sid­er­ably small­er than SV-40 (a dou­ble-strand DNA virus). The tech­nol­o­gy of the 1950’s was not able to fil­ter SIV from the viral extracts. Fur­ther, researchers of the day did not con­sid­er retro­virus­es to be dan­ger­ous, so they basi­cal­ly ignored them. AIDS has taught us how dan­ger­ous retro­virus­es can be. If ‘the project’ in New Orleans was inten­tion­al­ly expos­ing SV-40 to radi­a­tion they have exposed SIV to radi­a­tion at the same time. Sim­ply stat­ed, HIV‑1 is a mutat­ed form of SIV. Did the muta­tion which changed SIV into HIV‑1 occur when SV-40 was exposed to radi­a­tion? Was this the moment of con­cep­tion of AIDS? Could this arti­fi­cial­ly-induced muta­tion explain why HIV‑1 is mutat­ing so rapid­ly? Why it is behav­ing so ‘unnat­u­ral­ly’? . . . .”

Dr. Mary’s Mon­key by Ed Haslam; Trine Day [SC]; Copy­right 2007 by Ed Haslam; ISBN 978–0‑9777953–0‑6; p. 305. [15]