Harvard/Berkeley Biochem PhD Rush Wayne Reappraises AIDS

Rush Wayne received a PhD in biochemistry from UC-Berkeley in 1976 after earning a master's degree in biochemistry and molecular biology from Harvard in 1972, and a bachelor's degree in biochemistry from UC-Berkeley. He completed three years of postdoctoral studies at UC-Berkeley in bacteriology/microbiology before embarking on his current career as an innovator and private business owner in the field of organic farming near Eugene, Oregon.

I started questioning the HIV-AIDS model because of how it affected acquaintances of mine (now close friends) Kathleen and David Tyson. They are the Oregon couple who made international news for breastfeeding their infant son, Felix, and declining AZT treatment despite Kathleen's "HIV-positive" status.

I found out about their situation when the news appeared on the front page of our local newspaper that they had lost custody of Felix because their views of HIV and AIDS differed from those of their doctors. I wondered if their position had any validity.The newspaper mentioned that they had found some information on the internet, so I decided to take a look.

I am not currently involved in academic research or teaching in any way, and thus have no students, and most of the people I consider colleagues are not scientists. I found a copy of a talk Peter Duesberg delivered to the Cal-Berkeley Alumni association.
Because I did my PhD work at UC-Berkeley, I had heard of Duesberg and his position years ago, but I had read only the sketchiest of details from an article in the Daily Cal . This was not at all convincing--the few arguments the article presented sounded completely contrived. But now, reading Duesberg's own words, I had an entirely different reaction. His arguments were very clear and logical, and I was impressed. I didn't know how they would stand up to rebuttal, but I was very interested in learning more. The next week I checked out a copy of Duesberg's book, Inventing the AIDS Virus , from our local library. I read it straight through. I was also excited to see that my old lab mate, Nobel Prize winner Kary Mullis, had written the forward, and that Nobel Prize winner Walter Gilbert, an impressive teacher of mine at Harvard, was among the dissenters. I was convinced.

Since then, I've continued to read about the issue, now and then looking at the actual research articles when I could get to them. I have been especially fascinated by the articles from Australian biophysicist Eleni Papadopulos-Eleopulos--they could serve as primers on critical reading of research papers. They helped me look at the establishment papers on HIV in breastmilk, and I discovered that these studies had no HIV-negative controls.

While first learning about the issue, I read whatever I could on both sides. If someone criticized the dissenters, I studied the critique to see if it held water. But I have not found an instance, when both sides have been able to state their complete case, where the establishment view has held up. On the contrary, much of the establishment view seems to be based on bad research and fallacious reasoning.

I have only spoken with two other scientists about my views on the HIV-AIDS controversy, both of whom were skeptical of my perspective. Unfortunately, the sheer volume of material generated by the establishment makes it an exhausting proposition to evaluate it all.

Rush Wayne, PhD
Biochemistry, UC-Berkeley