Michael Snyderman MD said...:
Missing the point and lost opportunities
This quote is for Jason who says it is all about science: “I began comparing Judy Mikovits to Joan of Arc,” Coffin says. “The scientists will burn her at the stake, but her faithful following will have her canonized.”
While we are talking about burning Dr.Mikovits at the stake we should look closer. First focusing on the Western Blot slide is of importance to Jason. As a physician for 40 years I understand disease processes but don’t understand Western Blots or the critical importance of these. I have known Dr. Mikovits for almost 2 years and cannot believe that she would commit fraud. Everyone but postdocs can make mistakes. Dr. Mikovits had nothing to gain as she already knew that she would be fired, even before the Ottawa conference. She was actually fired for “insolence.” She cares about the truth and cares for our suffering.
Jason isn’t alone in missing the point of her presentation. Go back and look at the slides. Look at the graph of my data. There is no explanation for the improvement in my leukemia cell parameters other than a retrovirus responding to anti-retroviral drugs. In addition, my cytokine signature and CFS symptoms improved. Two prominent retrovirologists have tried to explain these results as “selective toxicity” which is ludicrous. At present my blood samples are being analyzed at other laboratories able to do deep sequencing and integration studies.
Let us return to the issue of wasted money. First, remember that this awful disease has disabled millions of people and cost the economy many, many billions of dollars. You are very proud that you participated in research to prove that classical XMRV does not cause CFS. We have known that since Lo and Alter and Dr. Mikovits has been saying that for about a year now. We know XMRV doesn’t cause CFS and cancer but that other retroviruses do. So what have you and other scientists accomplished by spending time (and money) trying to disprove the role of a virus that probably does not exist outside of culture lines? I share Dr. Deckoff-Jones’ frustration. What have you ever done that will lead to diagnosis and treatment of this awful disease?
Michael Snyderman, M.D.