Issue 30 – November 16, 2001
November 16, 2001
Anthrax & Biological Warfare
No Spray Coalition
PO Box 334, Peck Slip Station
NYC, NY 10272
- Anthrax: Natural Treatments to Biological Toxins by Mitchel Cohen
- Natural Antidotes to Biological Toxins (info from Bill Sardi, Knowledge of Health, Inc.)
- Homeopathic Remedy For Anthrax: Anthracinum Nosode from Donna Reilly
- Chinese Herbs Instead of Flu Shots
- Dangers: CIPRO a potentially very dangerous drug
- NY Times: Experts Say Cipro Overuse Could Lead to Problems
- The Cipro Rip Off and the Public Health, By Russell Mokhiber and Robert Weissman
- Biowarfare by Mitchel Cohen
Anthrax: Natural Treatments to Biological Toxins
by Mitchel Cohen
No Spray Coalition www.nospray.org
The pharmaceutical companies are making a fortune off of our torment. Bayer, for example, has charged the government $1.89 per pill for Cipro, the antibiotic of choice in treating anthrax over which Bayer holds a monopoly. The drugstore price has gone as high as $4.50/pill. But in India, which has its own independent pharmaceutical industry, a generic version of Cipro is selling for less than 20 cents. (See “The Cipro Rip Off and the Public Health” by Russell Mokhiber and Robert Weissman, reprinted near the end of this packet.)
What can we do. There are seven possibilities that come immediately to mind. We could: 1) move to India to receive equally effective but much less expensive pharmaceuticals than in the US; 2) allow India to market its products in the United States, and compete with Bayer, Monsanto and the rest; 3) pressure the US government to stop manufacturing and sending abroad the microrganisms, chemicals and weapons we fear here at home; 4) apprehend the neo nazi and ultra rightwing groups that have stockpiled anthrax and other biological agents. These groups are the most likely culprits in the current anthrax scare; 5) break the monopolistic stranglehold these corporations have on our health care; 6) provide free health care for all; and, 7) inform people about safer alternatives to the patented products of the pharmaceutical/vaccination industry.
It is this last point that I focus on in the first of these essays. The genetically engineered vaccines for anthrax have been linked to Gulf War Syndrome and other debilitating ailments. These are dangerous vaccines, with serious side effects and one of the highest death ratios per dose. The antibiotic Cipro, too, has very serious side effects. Many people are turning to alternatives to build up their immune systems to withstand exposure to anthrax spores and other diseases, as well as to treat the disease. Truth is, we have only to look as far as the kitchen cupboard for potent antidotes to organisms such as anthrax spores that we fear may be used in terrorist attacks or biological warfare. But the pharmaceutical companies try to suppress this information. Here are some alternatives to the industrial pharmaceutical model that have been shown to be effective in scientific studies.
(info from Bill Sardi, Knowledge of Health, Inc., at http://www.sdm2000.com/toxinreport.doc)
1. GARLIC. Yes, raw garlic may be useful in treating anthrax exposure. Lots of it. (As with everything, try to eat only organic nutrients.) The Garlic Information Center in Britain indicates that deadly ANTHRAX is most susceptible to GARLIC. Garlic is a broad spectrum antibiotic that blocks toxin production by germs. [Journal Nutrition, March 2001] In one test on other bacterial diseases, garlic was found to be a more potent antibiotic than penicillin, ampicillin, doxycycline, streptomycin and cephalexin, some of the very same antibiotic drugs used in the treatment of anthrax. Garlic was found to be effective against nine strains of E. coli, Staph and other bugs. [Fitoterapia, Volume 5, 1984] Freshly cut cloves of garlic or garlic powder may be beneficial. The antibiotic activity of one milligram of allicin, the active ingredient in garlic, equals 15 units of penicillin. [Koch and Lawson, Garlic: The Science and Therapeutic Application, 2nd edition, Williams & Wilkins, Baltimore 1996] Garlic capsules that certify their allicin content are preferred and may provide 5-10 milligrams of allicin, which is equivalent to 75-150 units of penicillin.
2. SULFUR BEARING ANTIOXIDANTS. The anthrax bacterium’s toxicity emanates from its ability to kill macrophage cells which are part of the immune system. Studies have shown that SULFUR BEARING ANTIOXIDANTS (alpha lipoic acid, N acetyl cysteine, taurine) and VITAMIN C, which elevate levels of glutathione, a natural antioxidant within the body, counters the toxicity produced by anthrax. [Molecular Medicine, November 1994; Immunopharmacology, January 2000; Applied Environmental Microbiology, May 1979] The above sulphur compounds can be obtained from health food stores and taken in doses ranging from 100 500 mg.
3. VITAMIN C. Vitamin C should be the buffered alkaline form (mineral ascorbates) rather than the acidic form (ascorbic acid) and should be combined with bioflavonoids which prolong vitamin C’s action in the blood circulation. The powdered form of vitamin C is recommended to achieve optimal dosing. A tablespoon of vitamin C powder (about 10,000 mgs) can be added to juice. Good products are Twinlab’s Super Ascorbate C powder and Alacer’s powdered vitamin C. (One could also take 1,500-2,000 mg of Vitamin C Ascorbate pills with bioflavanoids every hour. – MC)
4. MELATONIN. MELATONIN, a sleep inducing hormone available at most health food stores, has been shown to help prevent lethal toxins from anthrax exposure. [Cell Biology Toxicology, Volume 16, 2000] It could be taken at bedtime in doses ranging from 5-20 mg. Melatonin boosts glutathione levels during sleep. Of additional interest, one of the methods by which MUSTARD GAS works is its ability to bring about cell death by depleting cell levels of glutathione. [eMedicine Journal, April 9, 2001] So GLUTATHIONE is also an antidote for mustard gas poisoning.
5. IRON and METAL BINDING CHELATORS (Bind to and Remove Metals). Virtually all bacteria, viruses and fungi depend upon IRON as a growth factor. [Iron & Your Health, T.F. Emery, CRC Press, 1991] Iron chelating (removing) drugs and antibiotics (Adriamycin, Vancomycin, others) are effective against pathogens. The plague (Yersinia pestis), botulism, SMALLPOX AND ANTRAX could all be potentially treated with non prescription METAL BINDING CHELATORS. For example, iron removal retards the growth of the plague. [Medical Hypotheses, January 1980] The biological activity of the botulinum toxin depends upon iron, and metal chelators may be beneficial. Infection Immunology, October 1989, Toxicon, July, 1997]. Phytic acid (IP6), derived as an extract from RICE BRAN, is the most potent natural iron chelator and has strong antibiotic and antioxidant action. [Free Radical Biology Medicine, Volume 8, 1990; Journal Biological Chemistry, August 25, 1987] IP6 has been found to have similar iron chelating properties as desferrioxamine, a drug commonly used to kill germs, tumour cells or to remove undesirable minerals from the body. [Biochemistry Journal, September 15, 1993] IP6 rice bran extract (2000 4000 mg) should be taken in between meals with filtered or bottled water only (no juice).
6. ORGANIC OREGANO OIL. The antibacterial, antiseptic action of plant oils has been described in recent medical literature and may be helpful in fighting biological toxins. [Journal Applied Microbiology, Volume 88, 2000] A potent natural antibiotic, more powerful than many prescription antibiotics, is oil of OREGANO. One study showed that oregano completely inhibited the growth of 25 germs such as Staphylococcus aureas, Escherichia coli, Yersinia enterocolitica and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. [Journal Food Protection, July 2001] Oregano has been shown to be effective in eradicating intestinal parasites in humans. [Phytotherapy Research, May 2000] WILD OREGANO, which is quite different than the variety on most kitchen spice racks, has over 50 antibacterial compounds. Just one part wild oregano oil in 4000 dilution sterilizes contaminated water. [London Times, May 8, 2001] Oregano powder from whole leaf oregano is available as Oregamax™ capsules (North American Herb & Spice Co.). A spectacular development in natural antibiotic therapy is the manufacture of oregano powder from 100% pure oregano oil, producing one of the most potent antibiotics known. It has recently become available under the trade name OregacinTM (North American Herb & Spice Co.). It costs about $1 per pill, but this is a far cry from the $16 per pill for Vancomycin, known as most potent prescription antibiotic.
7. NERVE GAS ANTITOXINS Nature also provides nerve gas antitoxins. Nerve gas interrupts the normal transmission of nerve impulses by altering levels of acetycholinesterase, the enzyme that degrades the nerve transmitter acetycholine. HUPERZINE A, a derivative of CHINESE CLUB MOSS, has been suggested as a pre-treatment against nerve gases. [Annals Pharmacology France, January 2000] The Walter Reed Army Institute of Research conducted studies which revealed that huperzine A protects against nerve gas poisoning in a superior manner to physostigmine, a long standing anti nerve toxin drug. [Defense Technical Information Centre Review, Volume 2, December 1996] Huperzine A is available as a food supplement at most health food stores. Suggested dosage is 150 mcg per day. Pre treatment is advised prior to nerve gas exposure.
HOMEOPATHIC REMEDY FOR ANTHRAX: Anthracinum Nosode
from Donna Reilly
CALCUTTA, India (Reuters) — Indian homeopathic practitioners say that homeopathy, a traditional alternative system of medicine, has a magic pill that can prevent anthrax from infecting humans.
“Anthracinum, which is prepared by triturating (grinding) the puss from anthrax, is a very effective prophylactic against anthrax,” Dr. B. Gangapadhyay, a former head of the Orissa Medical College of Homeopathy and Research, told Reuters.
Homeopathy, seen either as a complement or alternative to orthodox medicine, uses metals from across the Periodic Table and a whole range of other substances from the plant and animal kingdoms.
Its basic principle is that “like cures like” — if a substance produces certain symptoms in a healthy individual, it can also treat those symptoms.
“Anthracinum works like magic. If a person just takes a dose (of anthracinum) for two days in succession, he would be immune from anthrax for at least three months,” Gangapadhyay, who practices in Calcutta, said.
Orthodox medical practitioners declined to comment on the effectiveness of the homeopathic remedy. (End Reuters story)
Another person adds: my dosage for anthrax is a little different. it is 200c so in case of a breakout I would take 2 pellets once per week every week until there was a breakdown or it had passed.
anthracinum nosode purchase info can be acquired by contacting
There is a place in NJ that distributes homeopathics.
Chinese Herbs for flu: Ganmaoling or Gan Mao Qing (ging) approximately $1.85 – $2.25 per bottle is excellent to use as a preventative for flu and also works if you get the flu to rid most of the symptoms within 8 hours and rid you of all symptoms within 24-48 hours.
If a dry cough remains eat organic pears to remove excess heat from lungs and moisten lung tissues…..Donna Reilly, who worked in and administered labs for many years, writes: I have recommended this to many people and at one time kept my entire staff of 32 from getting the flu and being out sick during flu season as well as facillitating quickrecoveries……..even physicians I worked with bought it and used it with great results (back on the job the next day without even being charged a consult fee).
L Lysine is also a great balancer of L-arginine and keeps viral propagation under control. Cut out refined sugar and coffee.
by Andreas Schuld, Wendy Small & Trent Harris, Parents of Fluoride Poisoned Children (PFPC)
October 21, 2001 [Vancouver, BC, Canada] — Two months ago we reported on the withdrawal of Bayer’s BAYCOL (Cerivastatin), a fluorinated drug (statin class) which had caused deaths and serious adverse health effects worldwide (1,2,3).
BAYCOL had been found to cause muscle destruction/ wasting — a condition known as rhabdomyolysis — and displayed compounded toxicity when used with other drugs. It had been linked to at least 31 deaths.
We also showed how the adverse reactions documented with BAYCOL were largely identical to those of numerous other fluorinated drugs — all of which had been withdrawn from the market in recent years (3).
ANTHRAX AND CIPRO
As a result of the current Anthrax scare another fluorinated drug called CIPRO has received extensive media coverage and the name has become familiar to millions almost overnight. As soon as the first cases of anthrax resulting from suspicious mail became known, there were wide reports of a hectic run on this drug.
Mass hysteria seems present as governments, pharmacies and individuals everywhere are stockpiling this drug. Pharmacies are reporting record sales, and on line prescription services and Internet sites are found selling the drug at more than $7 per pill.
People everywhere, hyped into believing their flu like symptoms are caused by anthrax exposure and misinformed by irresponsible media reports are taking CIPRO, and worse yet, are giving it to their children.
WHAT IS CIPRO?
CIPRO is ciprofloxacin, a fluorinated quinolone, belonging to a class of fluorinated antibiotics which also include enoxacin, temafloxacin, grepafloxacin, norfloxacin, sparfloxacin, tosufloxacin, fleroxacin, lomefloxacin, ofloxacin, etc.
Ciprofloxacin has been in use since 1987 for a variety of other indications and is the most widely used fluoroquinolone in humans and animals worldwide (4).
In 2000 the FDA approved its use in treatment for inhalational anthrax under its “accelerated approval” regulations (5). It had actually taken the unusual step of urging Bayer — the sole manufacturer for all countries except India — to file for such approval, supposedly in order to protect the public from future terrorist attacks. The US Department of Defense had already ordered reserves of CIPRO during the 1991 Gulf War (6).
As mentioned in the info on BAYCOL, temafloxacin and grepafloxacin are two other fluoroquinolones now withdrawn from the market because they had caused severe liver and renal damage — and deaths, just like fluorinated drugs from other, different classifications (3).
The same information also exists for CIPRO. Fatal liver failure associated with ciprofloxacin was reported in the Lancet in 1994 (7, 8; 150 more related refs). Ciprofloxacin has been implicated in several cases of acute renal failure and is the most established fluoroquinolone to cause such renal dysfunction (4, 9, 10, 11; 96 related refs).
The most common side effects reported due to CIPRO (2-16%) are gastrointestinal in nature and equal those reported when children accidentally ingest “too much” fluoride from their toothpaste — such as nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. Why? Ciprofloxacin administration results in elevated serum fluoride levels (12). In a series of tests evaluating the safety of ciprofloxacin in children, serum fluoride levels increased after 12 hours in 79% of the children; on day 7 the 24 hour urinary fluoride excretion was higher in 88.9% of children observed (12). Just as in the case of Baycol and other fluorinated drugs, CIPRO can cause musculoskeletal disorders such as rhabdomyolysis.
Since the introduction of fluoroquinolones on the market in 1987 more than 200 cases of rhabdomyolysis, tendinitis, tendon rupture etc. have been reported in the literature (4,13, 14,15). In October 1994 the Japan Pharmaceutical Affairs Bureau was first to amend the product information for fluoroquinolones to state that rhabdomyolysis may occur (16).
In 1996 the FDA also issued directives to manufacturers to include warning statements on all fluoroquinoline product inserts to alert patients and caregivers to the potential for tendinitis and tendon rupture (17). Also in 1996 the Sri Lanka Drug Evaluation SubCommittee decided that the product information of fluoroquinolone antibiotics should include a warning stating: “The onset of tendon pain calls for immediate withdrawal of fluoroquinolone antibiotics.” (18) Achilles tendon rupture was shown to occur even after withdrawal of the drug. Pathologically there was ultrastructure alteration in tendinocytes. Just as in other cases of fluoride poisoning, studies in animals show that magnesium deficiency aggravate the induced tendinopathy (14,19).
Just as with BAYCOL, drug interactions with ciprofloxacin have resulted in fatal outcomes due to potentiation of another drug’s effects such as theophylline (4,20), methadone (21), or warfarin (22). Just like BAYCOL and other fluorinated drugs, ciprofloxacin is a potent inhibitor of the thyroid hormoneregulated P 450 enzyme system in the liver. Of all fluoroquinolones, ciprofloxacin and enoxacin have shown the greatest inhibitory capacity (4). P450 IA2 prevents the metabolism/inactivation of methylxanthines, thereby causing increased serum concentrations of drugs like theophylline and caffeine, which in turn causes excess CNS and cardiac stimulation. As mentioned above, CIPRO also elevates serum fluoride levels.
The liver has been identified as a target organ of fluoroquinolone toxicity in animal studies (23). Already in the 1930s the same was shown by Bayer’s scientists such as Litzka or Knoll’s Kraft who found that ALL organic fluoride compounds tested (including those used for fluroquinolone production) interfered with thyroid hormone activity in liver and muscle tissue. Meanwhile, they also showed “anti-bacterial” activity. This led to the development of many fluorinated medications, including the numerous compounds then used very successfully in the treatment of hyperthyroidism (24,25). Kraft invented many fluorinated “medications”. When it was discovered that some of these organic compounds had the same detrimental effects on teeth and bone as inorganic fluoride — although much less actual F was involved — he even filed patents on behalf of Knoll’s using these compounds in dental preparations (26,27).
Pregnant women should never take ciprofloxacin. CIPRO transfers through the placenta. It inhibits P450 1A2 which has been shown to be critical for neonatal survival by influencing the physiology of respiration in neonates. Mice lacking this cytochrome died shortly after birth and showed symptoms of severe respiratory distress (28). Respiratory distress is a side effect of ciprofloxacin also in adults (9). CIPRO also transfers through breastmilk.
RESISTANCE TO BACTERIA
Taking Ciprofloxacin can spur germs to mutate so that future bacterial infections become untreatable. During the last decades a dramatic increase in bacterial strains multiresistant to antibiotics, particularly CIPRO, has been reported (30,31, 32). This increase has led to the occurrence of incurable bacterial infections with a fatal outcome, and a particularly serious problem in connection with hospital acquired infections.
For example, Clostridium difficile has become one of the most common acquired organisms in hospitals and long term care institutions. The organism typically infects patients whose normal intestinal flora has been disturbed by the administration of a broad spectrum antibiotic such as CIPRO. The diarrhea and inflammatory colitis associated with infection represent a serious medical and surgical complication leading to increased morbidity and mortality, and prolonging hospital stays by an average of nearly three weeks. This is especially true for the elderly and for patients with serious underlying diseases who are the most likely to develop the infection. C. difficile associated diarrhea represents a major economic burden to the healthcare system, conservatively estimated at $3 6 billion per year in excess hospital costs in the U.S. alone (33).
The emergence of this “antibiotic resistance” is a result of the overwhelming use of antibiotics in human and veterinary medicine. High rates of fluoroquinolone resistance have been reported in many countries (30). For example, in Asia CIPRO no longer can be used to treat gonorrhea, because the disease has become resistant to the drug (34).
While the FDA in August 2000 approved CIPRO as the first line treatment against anthrax, a few months later (October 2000) it asked Bayer to remove BAYTRIL — its equivalent for animals.The FDA proposed banning the fluoroquinolones, which chicken and turkey farmers have given to birds in their water since 1995 to help shield the animals from infection. The agency acted after linking the drugs to a jump in Campylobacter bacteria immune to the medications. Nearly 18 percent of one common strain that infects humans are now immune to the very same drugs which were considered the last line of defense against the infection.
Campylobacter is the leading bacterial cause of food poisoning in the United States. Typically contracted through raw or undercooked meat, the germs afflict more than 2 million people and kill some 500 each year in the US, according to the CDC. While Abbot voluntarily withdrew its version of the antibiotic (SaraFlox), Bayer decided to challenge the FDA. The company had the option to comply with the proposed ban or seek a hearing to determine whether such a move was justified. Bayer refused to comply with the ban, a move that kicked off a lengthy process that could take years (35). Meanwhile Bayer gets to poison the world, AND make huge profits from it. The AMA has advised its members to prescribe CIPRO very cautiously, saying the worldwide problem of antibiotic resistance poses future dangers worse than the anthrax attacks of today (Orlando Sentinel, October 20, 2001).
Photosensitization can result when light interacts with chemical agents in the skin and eyes. This process can produce undesirable clinical consequences, such as phototoxicity (i.e. exaggerated sunburn), photoallergy, or photocarcinogenicity. People receiving CIPRO or any other fluoroquinolone are warned on the product inserts not to expose themselves to direct sunlight. Rashs develop on the areas exposed. Upon UVA irradiation the “fluorine” of numerous fluoroquinolones such as lomefloxacin and fleroxacin, are “lost” as fluoride (36).
“We have discovered that anions can activate visual photoreceptors in the dark. One anionic activator is the commonly used dental agent fluoride. The data on in vitro preparations indicate that these anions modulate photoreceptor biochemistry and may effect photoreceptors sensitivity…” [Lewis A , “Fundamental studies in the molecular basis of laser induced retinal damage” Annual report (Final) March 1 1979 – March 15, 1985 US DTIC records (unclassified) AD#177817 (1985)] MEDLINE has many articles on fluoride and photoreceptor activation (G protein coupled) (35).
OTHER CIPRO SIDE EFFECTS (29)
Abnormal dread or fear, achiness, bleeding in the stomach and/or intestines, blood clots in the lungs, blurred vision, change in color perception, chills, confusion, constipation, convulsions, coughing up blood, decreased vision, depression, difficulty in swallowing, dizziness, double vision, drowsiness, eye pain, fainting, fever, flushing, gas, gout, flare up, hallucinations, hearing loss, heart attack, hiccups, high blood pressure, hives, inability to fall or stay asleep, inability to urinate, indigestion, intestinal inflammation, involuntary eye movement, irregular heartbeat, irritability, itching, joint or back pain, joint stiffness, kidney failure, labored breathing, lack of muscle coordination, lack or loss of appetite, large volumes of urine, light headedness, loss of sense of identity, loss of sense of smell, mouth sores, neck pain, nightmares, nosebleed, pounding heartbeat, ringing in the ears, seizures, sensitivity to light, severe allergic reaction, skin peeling, redness, speech difficulties, sluggishness, swelling of the face, neck, lips, eyes, or hands, swelling of the throat, tender, red bumps on skin, tingling sensation, tremors, unpleasant taste, unusual darkening of the skin, vaginal inflammation, vague feeling of illness, weakness, yellowed eyes and skin.
CIPRO causes fluoride poisoning. Will any practioner know how to deal with this, considering that the ADA has shielded all from proper knowledge of fluoride toxicity?
1) “Poison Control: Fluorides, the deadly toxin within” http://www.prn.usm.my/bulletin/nst/2001/nst34.html
2) 7AM News: “Cures That Kill?” http://www.7amnews.com/2001/features/081801.shtml
3) Dr. Mercola, “Baycol — Another Fluoride Drug Bites the Dust” (PFPC News, August 18, 2001 http://www.mercola.com/2001/aug/18/fluoride_drugs.htm
4) Clinical Toxicology Review, “What Are Fluoro quinolones?” CTR, Massachusetts Poison Control System, Vol. 20, No. 3 (1997)
5) FDA TALK PAPER, “APPROVAL OF CIPRO FOR USE AFTER EXPOSURE TO INHALATIONAL ANTHRAX,” Food and Drug Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Public Health Service 5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville, MD 20857 (2000)
6) CNN, Reuter’s, July 27, 2000
7) Fuchs S, Simon Z, Brezis M, “Fatal hepatic failure associated with ciprofloxacin,” Lancet 242:738 739 (1994)
8) 150+ Related References : CIPRO — Liver http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/htbin post/Entrez/query?form=4&db=m&term=cipro&liver
9) Hootkins R, Fenves AZ, Stephens MK, “Acute renal failure secondary to oral ciprofloxacin therapy: a presentation of three cases and a review of the literature,” Clin Nephrol 32(2):75 8 (1989)
10) Reece RJ, Nicholls AJ, “Ciprofloxacin induced acute interstitial nephritis,” Nephrol Dial Transplant 11(2):393 (1996)
11) 90+ Related References: CIPRO — Renal failure: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/htbin post/Entrez/query?form=4&db=m&term=cipro&renal&failure
12) Pradhan KM, Arora NK, Jena A, Susheela AK, Bhan MK, “Safety of ciprofloxacin therapy in children: magnetic resonance images, body fluid levels of fluoride and linear growth,” Acta Paediatr 84(5):555 60 (1995)
13) Australian Adverse Drug Reactions Bulletin, Vol. 16, No. 2 (May 1997)
14) Ramanujam TR, “Fluoroquinolones — A Review” (2001) http://www.mcsindia.org/doctors/Epharma/january.asp
15) Petition to Require a Warning on All Fluoroquinolone Antibiotics (HRG Publication #1399) http://www.citizen.org/publications/release.cfm?ID=6595
16) Information on Adverse Reactions to Drugs No.128, October 1994
17) FDA Medical Bulletin — Vol. 26, No.3 (October 1996)
18) 27th Meeting of the Drug Evaluation Sub Committee, Ministry of Health, Colombo (November 1996)
19) Shakibaei M, de Souza P, van Sickle D, Stahlmann R, “Biochemical changes in Achilles tendon from juvenile dogs after treatment with ciprofloxacin or feeding a magnesium deficient diet,” Arch Toxicol 75(6):369 74 (2001)
20) Clinical Toxicology Review, Vol. 20, No. 3 (1997)
21) Herrlin K, Segerdahl M, Gustafsson LL, Kalso E, “Methadone, ciprofloxacin, and adverse drug reactions,” Lancet 356(9247):2069 70 (2000)
22) Ellis RJ, Mayo MS, Bodensteiner DM, “Ciprofloxacin warfarin coagulopathy: a case series,” Am J Hematol 63(1):28 31 (2000)
23) Guzman A, Garcia C, Demestre I, “Subchronic toxicity of the new quinolone antibacterial agent irloxacin in beagle dogs,” Arzneimittelforschung 50(5):485 94 (2000)
24) Kraft K, “Über die Synthese einiger aromatischer Fluorverbindungen,” Knoll Research, Chem Ber. 84(2):150 156 (1951) (describes Manufacturing processes of numerous organic fluorides, after it was shown that all organic fluoride compounds displayed stronger anti thyroid activity than the mere “fluoride ion”)
25) Kraft K, Dengel F, “Über die Synthese einiger aromatischer Fluorverbindungen, II. Mitteilung,” Chem Ber 85(6):577 582 (1952) (more reports on organic fluoride investigations…”in regards to their characteristics in lowering BMR as well as anti bacterial activity”)
26) Zutavern EP, Kraft K, “Verfahren zur Herstellung von organischen Salzen der FluorwasserstoffsSure,” German Patent No. 855118, granted Dec. 5, 1950 (Knoll AG). (Kraft patent on the same organic fluoride Compounds used previously in the treatment of hyperthyroidism, now patented as anti caries agents!)
27) Eichler O, Kraft K, “Verfahren zur Herstellung einer alkalischen, seifenfreien, reagibles Fluor neben Calciumcarbonat enthaltenden Zahnpast a,” German Patent No. 971375, granted Aug. 28, 1951 (Knoll AG) (patent describing the use of ethanol amino hydrofluorides in toothpaste…)
28) Pineau T, Fernandez Salguero P, Lee SS, McPhail T, Ward JM, Gonzalez FJ, “Neonatal lethality associated with respiratory distress in mice lacking cytochrome P450 1A2,” Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 92(11):5134 8 (1995)
29) Cipro Monograph, http://www.healthsquare.com/pdrfg/pd/monos/cipro.htm
30) Coronado VG, Edwards JR, Culver DH, Gaynes RP, “Ciprofloxacin resistance among nosocomial Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus in the United States. National Nosocomial Infections Surveillance (NNIS) System,” Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 16(2):71 5 (1995)
31) Smith KE, Besser JM, Hedberg CW, Leano FT, Bender JB, Wicklund JH, Johnson BP, Moore KA, Osterholm MT, “Quinolone resistant Campylobacter jejuni infections in Minnesota, 1992 1998,” N Engl J Med 340(20):1525 32(1999)
32) CDC Special Report: “Emerging Mechanisms of Fluoroquinolone Resistance,” David C. Hoope Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
33) Kurtz CI, Fitzpatrick R, “Anionic polymers as toxin binders and antibacterial agents,” US Patent 6,290,946, GelTex Pharmaceuticals, Inc.(2000)
34) Orlando Sentinel, October 20, 2001
35) Adam Marcus, “Bayer Balks at Banning Poultry Antibiotic — FDA, citing resistance, seeks removal,” HealthScout Reporter, Dec. 1, 2000.
36) Chignell CF, “Mechanisms of chemically induced photosensitivity,” Crisp Data Base National Institutes Of Health, CRISP/99/ES50046 20 (1998).
37) Photoreceptor/fluoride — 50+ References: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/htbinpost/Entrez/query?form=4&db=m&term=photoreceptor&fluoride
THE MEDICATION: Experts Say Cipro Overuse Could Lead to Problems
By ABIGAIL ZUGER
NY Times, October 19, 2001
Infectious disease experts are increasingly concerned that overuse of the antibiotic Cipro by people worried about anthrax may cause a second wave of health problems.
These problems include side effects for people taking the drug and the possibility that a surge in Cipro use may exacerbate bacterial resistance to the drug and undermine its usefulness in the future.
“Our membership is extremely concerned,” said Dr. Carol J. Baker, president of the Infectious Disease Society of America and a professor of pediatrics, molecular virology and microbiology at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. Some people are allergic to Cipro, or ciprofloxacin, and become sick after even a single dose. But even people who initially take the antibiotic without a problem risk developing side effects from Cipro with time.
Dr. Stephen Baum, head of medicine at Beth Israel Hospital in New York and president of the Infectious Disease Society of New York, said, “Every antibiotic has side effects, and for almost all of them, the more you take, the more likely the side effects are.”
The most common side effects from Cipro are nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and loss of appetite.
The drug can also have an effect on the brain, including headaches, insomnia and mood changes. Five percent to 10 percent of people who take Cipro have had these problems. Hallucinations or seizures are rarer but can also occur.
Cipro can also damage the cartilage in the joints, especially in children. It is given to children only when absolutely necessary.
These concerns mean that Cipro should be used for anthrax prevention only when exposure has occurred, said Dr. David C. Hooper, chief of the infection control unit at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. Dr. Hooper said people who had been told to take Cipro because of a possible exposure to anthrax should stop taking the drug immediately if the situation proved to be a false alarm. The experts emphasized that no one should take Cipro or any other antibiotic out of fear that they might be exposed to anthrax at some indefinite future time. To date, all the anthrax bacteria isolated in New York and Florida have been sensitive both to Cipro and to drugs in the penicillin and tetracycline families of antibiotics. Both penicillin and doxycycline can also have side effects. But some experts say that if a long course of antibiotics is necessary one of those medications might be a better choice than Cipro. Doctors have had more experience with the other drugs, Dr. Hooper said. Furthermore, penicillin is active against far fewer kinds of bacteria than Cipro is. This means that it is less likely to lead to serious antibiotic resistance than Cipro, said Dr. Stuart B. Levy, director of the center of adaptation genetics and drug resistance at Tufts University Medical School in Boston.
Bacterial resistance to an antibiotic arises when an antibiotic taken for an infection kills off many other strains of bacteria in the body, leaving only resistant variants behind. These drug resistant variants may then multiply and come to predominate in the intestines and elsewhere in the body. Anyone who takes Cipro for a few weeks is bound to have Cipro resistant organisms in the intestine, Dr. Levy said.
Resistance to Cipro has become a problem with some dangerous bacteria. The drug could once treat gonorrhea everywhere in the world, for instance, but now it can no longer be used in Asia, and cases of resistant gonorrhea in the United States are increasing.
Research published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1999 showed that as ciprofloxacin use in Canada rose steeply from 1988 to 1997, the drug became less and less useful for treating a common and dangerous kind of pneumonia.
With overuse of Cipro, “we are risking the loss of a crucially important class of antibiotics,” Dr. Levy said.
Dr. Michael H. Miller, a professor of immunology and microbial disease at Albany Medical College who does research on Cipro and related antibiotics, added. “I’m very concerned about this.”
With flu season coming, Dr. Miller said, he worried that if a lot of people took Cipro — which does not work for the flu — resistance to the drug could become a particular problem in people who develop pneumonia as a complication of the flu.
“My concern is that there may eventually be unnecessary deaths because of this,” Dr. Miller said, “and the impact may be far more deleterious than any overall effect of anthrax.”
By Russell Mokhiber and Robert Weissman
Confronted with the prospect of bioterrorism on a massive scale, the Bush administration and the pharmaceutical industry have colluded to protect patent monopolies rather than the public health.
When the anthrax scare first hit, Cipro was understood to be the drug of choice for treatment. Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson said he wanted a stockpile adequate to treat 10 million exposed persons. That meant he needed 1.2 billion Cipro pills (the treatment regimen is two pills for 60 days). Bayer, which holds the disputed patent rights to Cipro in the United States, could not meet that demand in a timely fashion.
For the drugs it was able to supply, Bayer was charging the government $1.89 per pill. The drugstore price was more than $4.50. Indian companies sell a generic version of the same drug for less than 20 cents.
The U.S. government has authority, under existing law, to license generic companies to make on patent drugs for sale to the government. Those companies could have met supply needs that Bayer was not and is not able to satisfy. Generic competition might also have helped bring prices down, though it is unclear exactly what the government would have to pay Bayer if it bought generic versions of Cipro.
But the Bush administration chose not to exercise this authority. Pharmaceutical industry monopolistic patent protections are so sacrosanct, the administration decided, that even urgent U.S. public health needs do not merit any limitation on patent monopolies.
The administration was motivated in significant part by fear that if it authorized generic production in the United States for Cipro, it would undermine its hand in negotiations at the World Trade Organization (WTO) meeting in Qatar. There, African and other poor countries are asking for a declaration that the WTO’s intellectual property rules not be interpreted in ways that undermine efforts to advance public health. Above all, they want to clarify their existing right under WTO rules to authorize generic production of on patent drugs (a practice known as compulsory licensing). The United States, pathetically, is opposing this effort.
With the spotlight shining on Bayer’s price gouging for Cipro, the Department of Health and Human Services had to take action. It cut a deal with the company to lower Cipro prices, agreeing on a price tag of 95 cents a pill. That supposedly cut rate price turns out to be twice what the same government, indeed the same government agency, pays the same company for the same drug under another program.
But though inadequate, the price reduction did reflect the U.S. government’s negotiating leverage — leverage that was enhanced by the fact that the government had the authority to turn to generic manufacturers if Bayer refused to cut a deal.
What hypocrisy! At the same time as it leveraged the threat of a compulsory license, the administration is working feverishly in diverse fora — including the WTO and the Free Trade Area of the Americas negotiations — to limit poor countries’ effective ability to do compulsory licensing.
It is time to reverse course, and for citizens to demand the government prioritize public health over corporate profit.
In the United States, it is unclear how much Cipro the government should stockpile as a public health measure. Other, off patent antibiotics may be superior and are cheaper. These other drugs may or may not be effective against all strains of anthrax. What is clear is that intellectual property issues should have no impact on public health judgments made in this context.
Representative Sherrod Brown has introduced legislation, H.R. 3235, the Public Health Emergency Medicines Act, that would reiterate the government’s ability to do compulsory licensing in case of public health emergency (the government currently has this right, without regard to situation of national emergency) and establish that compensation paid to patent holders should be “reasonable.” It lists a variety of criteria to determine reasonability, including how much the patent holder invested and risked in the drug’s development, and how significant the government contribution was to the drug’s research and development. It also would permit the government to authorize generic producers to manufacture on patent drugs in the United States for export to countries undergoing public health emergencies. The Public Health Emergency Medicines Act should quickly become law.
In international treaty negotiations, it is time for the United States to stop identifying its interests only with those of the brand name drug manufacturers. The government should immediately cease its shameful opposition to a declaration that the WTO intellectual property agreement should not hinder developing country measures to protect public health. It should agree to accept the few needed clarifications to WTO rules to make compulsory licensing workable in poor countries over the long haul. It should end its sneaky efforts in the Free Trade Area of the Americas and other negotiations to impose technical rules that would impede compulsory licensing. And Congress should deny the administration the fast track authority it seeks to facilitate negotiation of more trade rules enhancing the brand name drug companies’ monopoly power.
Russell Mokhiber is editor of the Washington, D.C. based Corporate Crime Reporter. Robert Weissman is editor of the Washington, D.C. based Multinational Monitor. They are co-authors of Corporate Predators: The Hunt for MegaProfits and the Attack on Democracy (Monroe, Maine: Common Courage Press, 1999).
With the U.S. government poised to once again bomb Iraq, the administration and media are orchestrating the barely repressed hysteria and manipulating the American public into a chorus for retribution and war.
It doesn’t matter that Iraq has categorically denied any connection to the attacks on the World Trade Center and to the Anthrax scare, and has, indeed, denounced them.
Before the US bombardment began ten years ago under the auspices of George H.W. Bush, Sr., Iraq — along with Israel — had the most sophisticated health care system in western Asia and the Middle East. And it was free for all Iraqis. It also had modern sanitation and drinking water systems.
The U.S. bombardment took care of that. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqi people were murdered outright by the U.S. bombardment in 1991. A million more were killed by U.S. destruction of Iraq’s drinking water and hospitals, combined with the sanctions against that beleaguered people. Children continue to die from malnutrition and curable ailments that go untreated due to the U.S./U.N. embargo and sanctions. Whatever one thinks of Saddam Hussein (or George Bush, or Bill Clinton for that matter), when did the people of Iraq become our enemy?
George W. Bush is following in his father’s and in former President Clinton’s footsteps; both repeatedly declared the need to bomb Iraq again and again. Why? Back in 1998 Clinton and Gore said it was to force Iraq’s President, Saddam Hussein, to allow the U.S. to be represented on U.N. teams inspecting Iraq’s alleged chemical and biological weapons facilities. The Canadian and Dutch inspectors were permitted by Iraq, but this was not considered good enough by the U.S. It had to be U.S. inspectors — Iraq claimed they were working with the CIA, and so objected. Whitewashed in all the orchestrated hysteria and mumbo jumbo is that it was the U.S. and its allies that provided Iraq with nerve gas to begin with, along with all sorts of chemical and biological agents.
Saddam Hussein — who had been installed as President of Iraq in a CIA orchestrated coup — obtained the nerve gas on the world market (the leading suppliers were the U.S., France, England, Germany and Russia). Even as he condemned the threatened use of chemical and biological weapons by Saddam Hussein, U.S. President George Bush knew full well the extent of arsenal, for it was Bush himself, in his former capacity as head of the CIA (and later as Vice President and President), who had approved shipments of material needed to make biological and chemical weapons to Iraq.
Bush approved shipping to Iraq toxic varieties of E.coli and Salmonella bacteria, and agents causing anthrax, gas gangrene and brucellosis.(1)
In the course of restructuring the production and control of world oil, the Gulf war provided the the U.S. military with the opportunity to test new depleted uranium weapons, gas vaccines, and biological warfare medications in the field, on its own soldiers. Inoculations — some genetically engineered and completely experimental — were mandatory and generally done without the consent and often against the will of the soldiers. As it turns out, these inoculations are now viewed by independent researchers as cofactors in the development of Gulf War Syndrome, mysterious ailments afflicting hundreds of thousands of American veterans of the Gulf. And, in February, 1998, the U.S. began shipping large containers of untested genetically engineered anthrax vaccine to Israel to thwart the expected use of biological agents the U.S. had supplied to Iraq. What kind of devious mass experiment was being set up here?
The Bush administration also signed 700 licenses worth $1.2 billion for so called “dual use” technology to Iraq. As exposed by the Simon Wiesenthal Center in California and House of Representatives Banking Committee Chair Henry Gonzalez (D, Texas), hundreds of U.S. and European corporations such as Hewlett Packard, Honeywell and others provided Iraq with such “dual use” technology as computers for weapons guidance, fuel air explosives, imaging circuitry for missile warheads, vaccum pumps and bellows for nuclear power plants, and live cultures for bacteriological research. These were sent directly to the Iraqi military.(2)
In early February, 1998, the Russian government warned the U.S. not to bomb Iraq. To discredit Russia, word suddenly “leaked” that three years earlier (and the US government conveniently “just” discovered it! What a coincidence!) Russia sent “dual purpose” technology to Iraq which U.S. officials claimed could be used for bacteriological warfare. In actuality, this “dangerous” equipment sold by Russia was nothing more than a 5,000 liter vat for fermenting yeast. Could such a product be used for making, say, anthrax? Yes, although not the sophisticated „military grade‰ variety. So could any pressure cooker or, for that matter, any bathtub. It could also be used for making beer, and, more likely, antibiotics, which Iraq was desperate to obtain after a decade of war with Iran in which 1 million people on both sides were killed. Meanwhile, the press has yet to question why the U.S. had exported to Iraq far more ominous biological agents and military technology, with Reagan’s and Bush’s approval. What did the press, let alone Bush and Reagan, expect those agents would be used for?
The U.S. used the existence of Iraqi nerve gas — weapons, let me repeat, that were shipped to Iraq by the U.S. and its allies, primarily Britain, France and Germany — as a basis for vilifying Iraq. This enabled the U.S. government to get away with atrocity after atrocity in a war more properly called the “Gulf Massacre.” Civilian casualties? No problem. They’re just “collateral damage.”(3)
Most people assume that if any nerve gas had been used it would have had to have been Saddam’s doing. No corporate paper or tv newscast has yet dared suggest the possibility that it was the U.S., not Saddam, that used dangerous biological and chemical warfare agents in the Gulf.
That thought remains beyond the pale even today, despite the U.S.’s long history of biological and chemical warfare and experimentation on human beings.(4) Saddam, after all, was portrayed as the war criminal, “worse than Hitler,. The problem is that George Bush fit that description as well.
On September 11th 1990, U.S. President George Bush, upholding “democracy” and “peace,” declared his “New World Order”. He was soon to order thousands of tons of napalm, air fuel explosives, phosphorous bombs, cluster bombs, and uranium encased shells, raining holy terror upon Iraq. Seven Years later, President Clinton did George Bush one better — he actually signed a top secret directive authorizing first use of nuclear weapons against Iraq “under certain circumstances.”
By the end of February, 1998, two Los Angeles class submarines carrying nuclear warheads atop Tomahawk missiles had arrived in the Gulf. Each missile is encased in so called “depleted” uranium.(5) The non nuclear version, also enclosed in depleted uranium, are now being used against Afghanistan. The foxes of imperialism and world domination use every trick in the book to guard and to expand their multi trillion dollar oil henhouse.
1. NY Newsday, Nov. 8, 1996.
2. Dennis Bernstein, investigative reporter, KPFA (Berkeley, CA), as reported on Democracy Now (Pacifica), Feb. 13, 1998.
3. Mitchel Cohen, “Read My Apocalypse: The Role of the Gulf War in the Emergence of the New World Order,” 1998.
4. Mitchel Cohen, “The U.S. Government’s Secret War: A History of Experimentation with Biological & Chemical Warfare,” 1995.
5. Mitchel Cohen, „Glowing in the Gulf: Radiation, Genetically Engineered Drugs and Gulf War Syndrome,‰ 1998.
END PART ONE