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The Impact Of Ethical Transgressions On Health Reform

Armen Hareyan's picture

The healthcare crisis is attributed to many factors, but not the unethical suppression of innovation. Innovation that improves the quality of care, thus reducing utilization, was advanced twenty years ago as the only solution to healthcare economics.

The ability to stimulate immune function has vast implications for health reform, but is held to be unavailable. In reality, the potent immunostimulating properties of lithium and antidepressants were documented as early as 1981, but suppressed by vested interests. In 1981, I published the first of nine reviews on the immunostimulating and antimicrobial properties of lithium and antidepressants.

In a review published in 1983, I proposed that in order to stimulate immune function, an agent would need to have mood elevating properties. In working with pioneers in prostaglandin research, I learned that these molecules, when synthesized excessively, depress every component of immune function. In the early nineteen seventies, David Horrobin showed that antidepressants and lithium inhibit prostaglandins. In 1977, he showed that prostaglandins regulate DNA and RNA. Subsequently Millie Hughes- Fulford and others showed that prostaglandins regulate the synthesis, inhibition, and expression of genes, and R.A Goodlad that they regulate cell replication, when cancer is accelerated replication of abnormal cells. Twenty years ago, prostaglandins owned cancer research and therapeutics

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Immunostimulation is highly relevant to all pathogens, including the acquired immunodeficiency disorder, methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) hospital acquired infections (HAIs), Salmonella, many parasitic disorders including malaria, influenza, pandemic influenza, and the toxins of bioterrorism. To an enhanced immune system, the strain of HIV or H5N1 is immaterial, the rapid mutation of HIV or no significance. Stimulating immune function is relevant to primary immunodeficiency disorders, and to cancer. It has vast potential in veterinary medicine, marine biology, and the preservation of species. Various laboratories continue to pursue immunostimulation, when the problem was solved more than a quarter of a century ago. Depression, itself caused by excessive prostaglandin production in the brain, predisposes to infectious disorders, autoimmune disorders, cardiovascular disorders, neurovegetative disorders, and to cancer. It accelerates death from cancer, and increases cancer mortality.

At least fifty studies show that antidepressants kill cancer cells, inhibit their proliferation, convert multidrug resistant cells to sensitive, protect nonmalignant cells from damage by ionizing radiation and chemotherapy, and target the mitochondria of cancer cells, while sparing those of health ones. The latter mechanism may explain why antidepressants are known to be effective in such treatment resistant malignancies as gliomas, cancer of the lungs, liver, and kidneys, inflammatory breast cancer, resistant lymphomas, and conceivably others.

Thus cancer is not a hundred different diseases, but one disease with a hundred variations. Antidepressants can arrest cancer in advanced stages, and even reverse it, along with its metastases. The inertia in implementing medical advances would seem to be a failure of ethics, and not science. Conflicts of interest, now much in the news, are financial, or non- financial, of which the non- financial are far more destructive. Refusing to concede that a paradigm is a failure and allowing a promising newcomer to take its place, is the most damaging of all.

Julian Lieb, M.D was a Yale medical school psychiatrist, before switching to the immunopharmacology of infectious disorders and cancer. He is an authority on the role of prostaglandins in depression, infectious disorders, and cancer. Dr Lieb has authored or coauthored forty five articles and nine books.