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 Brian Deer and Goats
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John Stone

United Kingdom
1254 Posts

Posted - 09/17/2006 :  08:14:57  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
There are 187 references to colostrum in PubMed:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Search&db=pubmed&term=goat+colostrum&tool=fuzzy&ot=Goat+cholostrum


In a Sunday Times article nearly two years ago Brian Deer failed to allege impropriety in relation to a series of products to be developed from animal cultures that Andrew Wakefield was interested in at the time of the 1998 Lancet debacle. No doubt carefully reviewed by the Sunday Times legal department Deer stated:

"While Wakefield was under no legal or professional obligation to disclose the patent, campaigners believe that his attack on MMR may have been viewed differently had it been known".

The campaigners have never been identified, and perhaps do not extend beyond Deer himself, Dr Michael Fitzpatrick, and Prof Ian Bruce: the latter pair mentioned in the article although obviously professionals.


Deer elaborated:

"One of the applications dated June 1998 claims that it is “not only most probably safer to administer to children by way of vaccination/immunisation, but which also can be used to treat regressive behavioural disease, whether as a complete cure or to alleviate symptoms.”

"The product was to be made by a process involving the measles virus, the white blood cells of mice and goats’ milk.

"Professor Tom MacDonald of Southampton University, Britain’s pre-eminent gut immunologist, described the recipe as “total bollocks” when he was shown it last week. None of Wakefield’s products appears to have progressed much beyond the concept stage."

Brian Deer, 'MMR doctor planned rival vaccine', Sunday Times, 14 November 2004

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2087-1358605_2,00.html

In the Channel 4 Dispatches programme which followed this article 'MMR:what they didn't tell you' the following sequence with Professor Rick Blumberg and others was featured:

"BD: As luck would have it, world experts in inflammatory bowel disease – Dr Wakefield’s speciality – have gathered in Oxford for a conference. Throw light on his revolutionary rival vaccine and his products.

"[Oxford Science School. Inside lecture theatre. Notice: Lecturer in process.]

"BD [Off screen with camera on Prof Blumberg]: Professor Rick Blumbrerg is an expert in immunisation of the gut and president of the Crohns and Colitis Foundation of America.

"RB: You want me to flick through this.

"BD Yes have a quick glance.

"BD [Off-screen]: I asked him about the technology outlined in the RF’s patent application.

"RB: I don’t know what they are looking at. I just don’t know what they’re looking at in the end. They are basically taking white blood cells, er, what’s interesting is that they are taking them from a mouse. So I’m not sure how that has to do with a human.

"BD: So you put measles virus into mice. Take some of those white blood cells out of the mice, and what do they do.

"RB: And then they, er. I’m trying to be very careful how I use my words sparingly. But they then inject that into a pregnant goat and collect the colostrum...That’s basically pregnant goat’s breast milk.


"BD: Isn’t all this somewhat strange to you?

"PB: Er, in a word, yes.

"BD off-screen: During break, I checked Dr W’s pregnant goat remedy with experts.

"Prof Stephen Targen: The probability of its having any effect is extremely small if any thing. It doesn’t make sense. The whole technique doesn’t make sense.

"Prof Charles Elson: Not credible.

"Prof Stephen Targen: Really strange."

We may wonder at the ethics of all of these distinguished professors willing to put the boot into a colleague in an apparently casual and public way, the three having barely seen the documents. And it is very interesting that Deer having failed to establish that there was any ethical failure on the part of Wakefield then tried to make out that Wakefield was engaged in fringe scientific speculation. For this reason they may all be interested in today's article in the Sunday Times "'Pharm' goats give birth to new drugs." by Jonathan Leake, Science Editor.

Fascinatingly, Deer is on the record saying that he has no scientific competence: "My best qualification is a BA in philosophy, which is no use to anybody."

http://bmj.bmjjournals.com/cgi/eletters/330/7491/552#100186

This being the case it is a very interesting question what the Sunday Times thought they were doing being led down this road, by a journalist whose intellectual mastery seems somewhere between the shaky and the non-existent. On what basis have they put their trust in him?


'Pharm' goats give birth to new drugs
Jonathan Leake, Science Editor

The Sunday Times September 17, 2006

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/newspaper/0,,176-2361658,00.html





BRITISH patients could soon be using the world’s first medicine derived from transgenic animals after European regulators approved a drug produced by genetically modified goats.

The pioneering drug, an anti-clotting agent for people with a rare inherited disease, is made from the milk of goats whose DNA has been modified to incorporate human genes.

The drug, ATryn, sets a precedent for using modified animal proteins, and despite protests from animal welfare campaigners that “Frankendrugs” are ethically unjustifiable, the technology is sure to take off.

Drug companies have long suspected that there is profit in turning farm animals into pharmaceutical “factories”, a process known as pharming.

In theory, pharmed animals could also be used to produce insulin for diabetics, blood-clotting factor to treat haemophiliacs and a range of other proteins.

Pharming could become integral to the drugs industry if the costs fall substantially below those for current production systems. Chickens, cows, rabbits are already undergoing trials.

However, proposals to modify pigs with human genes so their organs could be transplanted into people have largely been abandoned for fear of transmitting viruses.

ATryn was developed to treat patients with hereditary antithrombin deficiency (HAD), which makes people vulnerable to deep-vein thrombosis. Tom Newberry, a spokesman for GTC Biotherapeutics, the American company that developed the drug, said it would be available in Britain and Europe from mid-2007. “This process has the potential to revolutionise the pharmaceutical industry,” he said.

Conventional methods of creating blood proteins — such as insulin, growth hormone and antithrombin from donated blood and body tissues — are vulnerable to the risk of infection.

In one case, thousands of haemophiliacs contracted HIV when they were given clotting factors from infected donors. In the 1980s such scandals prompted the creation of a new system of “bioreactors” in which cells, usually taken from the ovaries of Chinese hamsters, were genetically modified to produce a human protein and then cultured.

This system has worked well for about two decades, but it is hard for such cells to make protein molecules, especially larger ones, with exactly the right properties. It is also expensive to produce large amounts.

GTC created the first transgenic goats 15 years ago by taking fertilised goat egg cells and injecting them with the human gene for the antithrombin protein. The gene incorporated itself into the DNA of the embryonic goats, which were then implanted in surrogate mothers.

Another biotech company, the Dutch firm Pharming, is close to bringing drugs to market. Last month it lodged an application with the European Medicines Agency, the body that approved ATryn, for a second drug derived from transgenic animals.

Its drug, Rhucin, is intended to treat hereditary angioedema, a disease characterised by the painful, and sometimes fatal, swelling of soft tissues.

Transgenic animals are a mainstay of medical research: mice and rats are already used to test the function of various genes.

Professor Steve Brown, director of the Medical Research Council’s mammalian genetics unit at Harwell, Oxfordshire, said such research was shedding light on diseases ranging from cancer to deafness in children.

“We have, for example, identified the mouse genes that cause a condition analogous to glue ear in humans,” he said. “In 10 years we will have real insight into many more conditions.”

Others are uneasy at turning animals into research tools and drug factories. Genewatch, a campaign group that tracks developments in genetic engineering, said in a report: “This represents a further step towards seeing animals purely as commodities without regard for their inherent worth as sentient beings.”

However, even the protesters might approve of research at Minos BioSystems, a British biotech company. It plans to produce drugs from insect larvae. In a business plan reminiscent of the sci-fi horror film The Fly, the company proposes creating house flies with human genes to produce human blood protein.



Copyright 2006 Times Newspapers Ltd.

See also 'Brian Deer: Questions for the Sunday Times'

http://www.jabs.org.uk/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=503

Edited by - John Stone on 01/28/2007 02:32:16

John Stone

United Kingdom
1254 Posts

Posted - 01/06/2007 :  12:30:49  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Today it was reported in the Guardian that Andy had decided to drop the libel case for reasons which are obvious:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/medicine/story/0,,1983942,00.html

The need to defend his integrity at the GMC is paramount. When this was initiated no one could have had a clue about how the timing of thse events would fall out, and it was widely being questioned whether the GMC hearing would go ahead at all. The above shows, I believe, how tenuous Deer's story was.

Edited by - John Stone on 01/06/2007 13:00:10
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John Stone

United Kingdom
1254 Posts

Posted - 01/07/2007 :  00:12:09  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Interesting. Apart from Deer's ability to read any situation correctly how could you generalise from an individual case? Contrast the serious scientific method of Wakefield's Lancet study: a hypothesis is considered and not confirmed. In this case Deer apparently has a revelation and then everything else has to confirm it without any attempt to test it: anyone who stands in his way is a liar and a charlatan. Also the hypothesis is absurd and implausible. Pharmaceutical products are supposed to be monitored and tested, though they are only inadequately - why should all vaccine products as a class be safe, and for all infants, regardless of genetics or state of health. I am inclined to agree with Deer that not only is he out of his depth scientifically, but his "BA in philosophy is no use to anybody". How did the journalist get away with it?
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spambuster

15 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2009 :  15:31:11  Show Profile  Send spambuster an AOL message  Reply with Quote
quote:
[i]Originally posted by John Stone[/i]
[br] ... I am inclined to agree with Deer that not only is he out of his depth scientifically, but his "BA in philosophy is no use to anybody". How did the journalist get away with it?



According to a source who knows this from "the horse's mouth", Deer has the Legal Manager at The Sunday Times responsible for vetting these stories believing Brain's knowledge is so great Brain is "almost a doctor" and that Brain really does understand these things. Frankly, I would have preferred a conspiracy theory to this explanation. Truth is stranger than fiction.

Edited by - spambuster on 02/09/2009 15:33:21
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john

United Kingdom
608 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2009 :  17:47:00  Show Profile  Visit john's Homepage  Send john an AOL message  Reply with Quote
"Dr Wakefield's decision to discontinue the libel proceedings is a complete vindication for both the Dispatches' investigation and Brian Deer's dogged journalism."

I believe he dropped it as Deer was requesting all his documents which he didn't want to give him until his GMC hearing was over.
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MinorityView

USA
611 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2009 :  18:19:56  Show Profile  Visit MinorityView's Homepage  Reply with Quote
dogged is not a synonym for good (as in high quality).

Brian Deer is definitely dogged. He has sped down the wrong path.

Aged survivor of many years of alternative health care...and one vaccine, administered by a doctor without the consent of my parents, 50 years ago.
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spambuster

15 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2009 :  19:18:32  Show Profile  Send spambuster an AOL message  Reply with Quote
quote:
[i]Originally posted by MinorityView[/i]
[br]
Brian Deer is definitely dogged.



So what's he got against goats then? A bad experience in childhood?

Perhaps he will reply: "I've got nothing against goats. Some of my best friends are goats."

Well, they would be wouldn't they.
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Angladrion

New Zealand
153 Posts

Posted - 02/10/2009 :  10:32:02  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
[i]Originally posted by john[/i]
[br]"Dr Wakefield's decision to discontinue the libel proceedings is a complete vindication for both the Dispatches' investigation and Brian Deer's dogged journalism."

I believe he dropped it as Deer was requesting all his documents which he didn't want to give him until his GMC hearing was over.



which is understandable. No-one would be wanting to prepare for two cases at the same time.

Perhaps if the GMC comes down on the side of honesty, Wakefield might be able to go for Deer with all barrels.

"..it does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people's minds.." - Samuel Adams
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