"Let both sides seek to invoke the wonders of science instead of its terrors. Together let us explore the stars, conquer the deserts, eradicate disease, tap the ocean depths, and encourage the arts and commerce." — John F. Kennedy (1917-63), US statesman. Inaugural Address, 20 Jan 1961.
QUESTION: Dr. Banks, would you share your thoughts about the history and theory of HIV as the cause of AIDS?
The [acquired immune deficiency] Syndrome was defined clinically as one of [now] 29 different diseases. Later, in the U.S., a decrease in CD4+ T cells was added. In order to make the claim that an exogenous organism is attacking the body, one has to do the science that has been perfected for over 100 years. They are called Koch’s postulates and were updated by people like Gallo and Montagnier [Luc A. Montagnier, French virologist and co-discoverer of HIV] and agreed upon as the method to identify exogenous viruses. The human genome is made up of at least 8-10% retroviruses and perhaps more. It is known that these viruses express themselves under conditions of oxidative stress and during fetal development. So you have to make sure you are distinguishing between an exogenous or an endogenous virus by following the protocol. Gallo never followed this protocol.
QUESTION: What, if any, was the seminal idea that convinced you HIV may not be the cause of AIDS?
Epidemiology. And as an ob/gyn, I simply was not seeing the “sexually transmitted” disease epidemic in my practice [as predicted and claimed], nor were my colleagues, at that time in the NY metropolitan area. After 30 years, they still have not explained (because they can barely find) what they are calling HIV in any CD4+ T lymphocytes. If they can’t find it, just what is the mechanism by which this “killer virus” is killing these cells?
QUESTION: What is causing immune deficiency? What do you think is the cause of AIDS?
That was the question from the beginning. Now we have to look at cellular metabolism and get outside of the box. I discuss it at length in my book. They have known since 1988 that there is a deficiency of the master antioxidant glutathione. When I discovered that, I began to look at cellular metabolism and cell energy production. I looked at the research on cell structure, cell signaling, and cell genetics—the central nuclear DNA and the mitochondrial DNA and the key problem of energy metabolism. I look at the subsets of CD4+ T cells (Th1 and Th2) and their various functions, and I take a careful look at nitric oxide, and its role not only as a cell signaling agent, but also as the missing factor when cell-mediated immunity is deficient. AIDS is 29 different diseases that all have different long known causes, and most of them are curable.
QUESTION: Would you summarize the essence of your book?
The AIDS crisis arose out of a historical context and was promoted by a particular group of people with a particular mindset. The mindset evolved from the eugenics era; it has become more sophisticated but no less lethal. This is not the first time such a thing has happened. I looked at the subacute myelo-optic neuropathy (SMON) crisis in Japan [an epidemic caused by clioquinol], and the pellagra saga in the U.S. as two examples. The pharmaceutical industry does not have the best track record for ethical behavior.
PART III coming up.