Desperation and hope led Liberian doctor Gorbee Logan to treat a fellow healthcare worker for Ebola using Lamivudine, a drug used for treating HIV and hepatitis B. Over the next two days the patient showed remarkable improvement and ultimately survived.
As of October 3rd, Dr. Logan had used the drug on at least 15 others, saving 13 of them. That’s a survival rate of 86.6%, a miraculous contrast to the 70% fatality rate observed during this year’s Ebola outbreak.
Dr. Logan wasn’t taking a stab in the dark but rather capitalizing on research that was reported as early as 2001.
Thirteen years ago Reuters reported on a medical discovery that found both Ebola and HIV/AIDS use the same mechanisms to spread throughout the human body.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – December 1, 2001 – The viruses that cause AIDS and Ebola, two deadly, contagious and highly feared diseases, spread through the body using the same mechanism, U.S.-based researchers said on Friday. The researchers, led by Dr. Paul Bieniasz of the Aaron Diamond AIDS Research Center at New York’s Rockefeller University, said they hoped their finding might lead to the discovery of new drugs to help treat HIV and Ebola infections.
Evidently, that discovery did lead to the creation of new drugs that could be deployed to fight the most deadly and widespread Ebola epidemic in history; but the western medical community has done nothing to make that happen.
Instead, over the past few months we’ve seen scores of interviews with doctors and researchers that ignored existing treatment options and instead focused on non-existent vaccines as if there were no other possible medical response.
Each of these experts offered excuses and explanations for why there is no Ebola vaccine including a man credited with discovering the pathogen, Peter Piot, a Belgian microbiologist.
In a CNN Money interview (above), Piot said that ‘…we don’t know enough how to treat someone with this viral infection, with Ebola, we don’t know exactly how to prevent it through a vaccine, and we don’t know also how exactly the virus causes death.”
Dr. Piot’s statement was a lie, and he knew it.
Although medical experts tell us that there is no definite cure for Ebola, nearly everyone on the planet has now heard of ZMAPP. This experimental bio-pharmaceutical set a historic precedent this year, credited with saving the lives of western doctors that had become infected with Ebola while serving in Africa. As their colleagues struggled to save their lives, virtually all of the ensuing drama was broadcast live, all over the world.
Mr. Piot’s career essentially began with the discovery of Ebola, one of the most feared pathogens in existence, yet we’re supposed to believe that he didn’t notice this historic development?
In the CNN interview, Piot would have us believe that nothing can be done about this pandemic that CDC Director Tom Frieden characterized as “spiraling out of control”. Yet the same week that this interview was aired, Piot was quoted in the Guardian saying that “…ZMapp may be an effective treatment of Ebola infection in humans. It is now critical that human trials start as soon as possible.”
Professor John Ashton, president of the UK Faculty of Public Health blames the lack of an Ebola vaccine on Big Pharma’s disregard for impoverished Africans.
For whatever reason, Piot’s interview on CNN ignored vital and pertinent information that has resulted from decades of Ebola research. Assuming that was the intent, the only other “success” that can be attributed to the interview is that it fostered apathy towards the horrific deaths of thousands of African people.
In an article published by British newspaper The Independent, Professor John Ashton, president of the UK Faculty of Public Health (the British counterpart to our CDC), blames the failure to find an Ebola vaccine on the “moral bankruptcy” of the pharmaceutical industry. He reasons that the refusal to invest in an Ebola vaccine is due to the fact that, until last month, it only affected people in Africa.
“In both cases [Aids and Ebola], it seems that the involvement of powerless minority groups has contributed to a tardiness of response and a failure to mobilise an adequately resourced international medical response.
“In the case of Aids, it took years for proper research funding to be put in place and it was only when so-called ‘innocent’ groups were involved (women and children, haemophiliac patients and straight men) that the media, politicians, scientific community and funding bodies stood up and took notice.”
So maybe this Dr. Peter Piot is simply a despicable racist that has no interest in actually combating Ebola because its only an “African problem”. Though even if that were the case, its uncharacteristic of a scientist to wittingly appear to be ignorant. It’s widelyrecognized science is a very ego-driven pursuit, especially for researchers that are the “rock stars” of their fields. When Dr. Bieniasz published the connection between AIDS and Ebola more than a decade ago, Peter Piot should have found himself in a unique position to lead the scientific community in the eradication of both AIDS and Ebola; thus earning for himself a most enviable position in the annals of science.
One can hardly imagine that Dr. Piot would gain so much pleasure from the deaths of Africans that he would willingly forgo such an opportunity, yet he’s obviously aware of a possible treatment for Ebola, while simultaneously keeping it secret from the unwashed masses that get their news from CNN.
Perhaps there’s a touch of classism in Piot’s feigning ignorance about Ebola treatments.
Or maybe he’s an ignorant and unmotivated has-been. Perhaps he attained his only real achievement in the 1970’s, by being in the right place at the right time; and now he just peddles his name to agenda-driven editors and producers so that he can earn a little pocket money.
Dr. Peter Piot, who helped discover Ebola in 1976, told CNN Money that there are no known treatments for Ebola on the same week that he praised ZMapp in an interview with The Independent.
It could be that Dr. Piot just doesn’t give a damn about fighting Ebola, or AIDS for that matter, regardless of who it affects; and it’s possible that his deliberate effort to hide scientific breakthroughs is the product of something more sinister.
None of this would really matter if Dr. Peter Piot was, in fact, a washed-up quack. Unfortunately, that’s not the case.
Peter Piot is presently the director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine , in 2009-2010 he was the Director of the Institute for Global Health at Imperial College, London and is a former President of the International AIDS Society.
Piot was also the founding Executive Director of UNAIDS and served as Associate Director of the Global Programme on AIDS for the World Health Organization. He was even Under Secretary-General of the United Nations from 1995 until 2008. His bio states: “Under his leadership UNAIDS became the chief advocate for worldwide action against AIDS.” Obviously, a discovery that identified an essential link between the treatment of both AIDS and Ebola should not be a forgotten bit of trivia for this man.
Although he’s a physician that is relied upon by millions to safeguard public health, he obviously has an agenda that is incongruent with the duty that he’s been entrusted to fulfill. When a person of this magnitude goes on international television and spreads such malicious disinformation we should be able to rely on the press and our leaders in government to call him out and discredit him – but they wont.
Regardless of what Dr. Piot and the United Nations has either done or refused to do regarding Ebola, Barack Obama declared last week that the “…United States will continue to help lead the global response…” to the scourge. (emphasis added) Since the discovery of the disease in 1976 the United States has been a central figure in the Ebola story. If we, as Americans, intend to undertake a sincere and critical analysis of the history of Ebola and the efforts to destroy it, then we should rightly begin by examining our own government’s role in the saga.