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Peter Myers´ Digest 7/12/20 (Hydroxychloroquine versus Remdesivir)

(1) Studies find HCQ effective & safe against Covid-19 - Peter Breggin MD, empathic psychiatrist(2) Fauci’s Remdesivir: Inadequate to Treat COVID-19 and Potentially Lethal - Peter R. Breggin, MD(3) LancetGate: Hydroxychloroquine versus Gilead’s Remdesivir - Michel Chossudovsky(1) Studies find HCQ effective & safe against Covid-19 - Peter Breggin MD, empathic psychiatrist News about Hydroxychloroquine to Treat COVID-19Peter R. Breggin, MD and Ginger BregginMay 21, 2020Amid the fears generated by COVID-19 and a too-often fear-mongering media, it is important to have solid information about potential treatments. Because political attacks have been mounted against hydroxychloroquine, we have been writing about its great safety record and potential benefits. Now we want to alert you to two new positive studies.A <> retrospective detailed study from China has found that low-dose oral hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) "was associated significantly with the reduced fatality of critically ill patients with COVID-19." Laboratory data also showed that the medication "greatly lowered the levels of IL-6, one of the most inflammatory cytokines." The dose of 200 mgs twice per day for 7–10 days was indeed low and well-within the range at which it has proven extremely safe for more than half a century.The scientists concluded, "HCQ treatment significantly reduced the fatality of critically ill COVID-19 patients" compared to patients who were not treated with the medication. They summarized:In summary, this retrospective study demonstrates that HCQ significantly reduces death risk of critically ill COVID19 patients without apparent toxicity, and its mechanism of action is likely mediated through its inhibition of inflammatory cytokines on top of its ability in inhibiting viral replication.The authors believe that their study is strong enough to recommend its use "to save lives" in seriously ill patients. They also recommended its use as "an option for a patients at an early stage considering its safety records and the long history of its use in treating malaria infections."A <> second positive retrospective study has now come from South Korea. The authors found that "HQ with antibiotics was associated with better clinical outcomes in terms of viral clearance, hospital stay, and cough symptom resolution" compared to another antiviral drug or to "conservative treatment."Like the Chinese study, hydroxychloroquine did not result in any deaths or other serious adverse events, further adding to its remarkable safety profile.Paolo Zanotto, a professor at the University of Sao Paulo in Brazil, has <> published 207 scientific articles, mostly in the field if virology. He recently compiled a list of <> 50 published articles about hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine that relate positively to the use of these drugs in pneumonia, viral illnesses in general, and to the treatment of COVID-19, including studies of the drugs’ mechanisms of action.Do not wait to hear the results of proposed NIH controlled clinical trials for hydroxychloroquine. They will be "controlled" only in the sense that Anthony Fauci will control and manipulate them to conform with his wishes. Fauci, the Director of the NIH Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases <> behaved fraudulently in planning and promoting recent clinical trials for remdesivir, a dangerous and ineffective drug which he desperately tried to make look good. We have described his unethical and dangerous actions in considerable detail. Fauci cannot be trusted to do an honest job evaluating hydroxychloroquine, a drug he has actively tried to discredit.It is time for people to stop railing against President Trump for taking and promoting hydroxychloroquine. National media figures have recently <> accused Trump of killing people by recommending the drug. In reality, the people who are attacking the use of hydroxychloroquine—a tried-and-true antiviral agent with an extraordinary safety record—are the ones who are endangering untold millions of lives. We must stop listening to Anthony Fauci, who wants our nation to stay shutdown waiting for a miracle drug or vaccine, while he opposes an extremely safe and significantly effective drug, hydroxychloroquine.(2) Fauci’s Remdesivir: Inadequate to Treat COVID-19 and Potentially Lethal - Peter R. Breggin, MD’s Remdesivir: Inadequate to Treat COVID-19 and Potentially LethalAn Analysis of the Science and PoliticsBy Peter R. Breggin, MD and Ginger Ross BregginMay 14, 2020We have found that remdesivir is a failed antiviral drug that will probably do more harm than good for many coronavirus patients. An earlier <> remdesivir trial for Ebola was stopped because the drug was causing significantly higher mortality rates than other antiviral drugs in the same trial. As one recent medical source noted, the remdesivir Ebola trial had to be aborted "<> because of an increase in death among patients taking it, meaning it did not help those patients".Remdesivir is not a specific anti-COVID-19 drug, as many people think. It is a general antiviral drug with a history of earlier failures, as well as adverse effects serious enough to kill patients. Dr. Anthony Fauci should never have made it his frontrunner for drugs desperately needed to treat the pandemic. We will describe very recent scientific data confirming these conclusions.Fauci Cancels the NIH Remdesivir Trial for COVID-19Dr. Fauci—Director of the NIH Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases—has clandestinely cancelled NIH’s remdesivir trial while he continues to audaciously promote the drug. Fauci signaled the end of the clinical trial when he announced that he had broken the double-blind by informing patients in the placebo group that they were not getting the antiviral drug remdesivir and allowing them to switch to taking it. In an interview, Fauci said that <> the results of the remdesivir trial were so promising, there was "an ethical obligation to immediately let the placebo group know so they can have access" to the drug.Fauci had no ethical responsibility to break the double-blind to allow the placebo patients to get treatment. The drug was not saving lives, it has serious adverse effects from earlier trials, and its meager results were very disappointing and controversial. It is far more likely that he was ending the trial to cover up the disaster. In saving face for himself and the drug company, Fauci may have needlessly endangered the lives of the placebo patients by unleashing remdesivir upon them.Like Tearing Up the Remdesivir Study in Front of Our EyesWhen Fauci announced he had broken the double-blind for his highly promoted remdesivir study, he basically tore up the study in front of our eyes, while telling us to take his word for everything. His actions left us wondering if he is hiding that remdesivir for COVID-19 is as disappointing and dangerous a failure as it was for Ebola. While touting the alleged positive results for remdesivir, Fauci has failed to announce the adverse effects profile. We simply do not know how dangerous the drug has proven to be in the aborted trial.By breaking the double-blind, Fauci invalidated the NIH remdesivir study. We will never know what its conclusions would have looked like. Fauci’s remdesivir clinical trial will not even be eligible for publication in a reputable journal. Similarly, without the double-blind, the study could not have gained legitimate FDA approval if going through the agency’s normal approval process.Once the double blind was broken, patients and researchers learned who was taking the medication and who was not. This turned Fauci’s "gold standard" clinical trial into the weakest kind of study, an open observational study—one in which highly biased researchers and analysts, such as Fauci, manipulate the unblinded data and offer their subjective opinions.This is the study and the miracle drug that Fauci so highly touted two weeks ago, declaring "<> This will be the standard of care," proving "that a drug can block this virus." Now Fauci’s research is essentially worthless, except for the serious doubts it raises about the drug’s hidden safety profile.Remdesivir Clinical Trial Published in Lancet Finds No Benefit and Very Serious Adverse EffectsShortly before Fauci began touting his flawed and now-terminated study, strong peer-reviewed evidence from a genuine double-blind study was published indicating that remdesivir is both useless and dangerous in treating COVID-19. Together with the failed Ebola remdesivir trial, this new publication gives us two controlled clinical trials showing that remdesivir is probably doing more harm than good when treating viruses.The recent multi-centered clinical trial was published in the world’s oldest and most prestigious journal, <> Lancet. In the study, remdesivir not only failed to demonstrate clinical improvement in COVID-19 patients, it inflicted potentially fatal adverse reactions on the patients in the form of increased damage to the lungs. Fauci may be killing unwitting patients by encouraging them, as he has done, to switch to the experimental and dangerous remdesivir.The multi-center controlled clinical trial published in <> Lancet found remdesivir ineffective. It was devoid of any statistically significant clinical improvements.Interpretation In this study of adult patients admitted to hospital for severe COVID-19, remdesivir was not associated with statistically significant clinical benefits. (p. 1, bold in original).In addition, despite the encouraging findings in non-clinical models, they found no antiviral effect for the drug in human patients:Remdesivir did not result in significant reductions in SARS-CoV-2 RNA loads or detectability in upper respiratory tract or sputum specimens in this study.(p. 9)Most importantly, Remdesivir produced very severe adverse reactions in the form of "respiratory failure" or "acute respiratory distress syndrome" in 5% of patients. In other words, 5 of every 100 patients taking remdesivir developed a life-threatening decline in their condition. The drug made their disease worse! This echoes the findings of the disastrous remdesivir Ebola trial.Here is the Lancet study summary of adverse events serious enough to cause discontinuation of remdesivir:More patients in the remdesivir group than the placebo group discontinued the study drug because of adverse events or serious adverse events (18 [12%] in the remdesivir group vs four [5%] in the placebo group), among whom seven (5%) were due to respiratory failure or acute respiratory distress syndrome in the remdesivir group. (p. 10)Although the researchers were based in China, the publication of their scientific report had to pass the more rigorous Western standards imposed by the Lancet. By contrast, Fauci’s NIH remdesivir study has not passed peer review or been published anywhere—and because the double-blind has been broken, it should never be published in a legitimate journal. Now that Fauci has aborted it, scientists around the world will never know its real outcome. Instead, we are asked to take its meager, manipulated positive results on faith from Fauci without being told about its adverse event profile.The study in Lancet was funded by numerous sources, including the Chinese government, the British government, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and by a drug company other than Gilead. Confirming Fauci’s biases, his Institute did not provide funding.The gullible media has fawned over the NIH/NIAID press release of its unfinished, unpublished and aborted study on remdesivir while largely ignoring the completed remdesivir Chinese study in Lancet which found no statistically significant positive results for the drug and a very high rate of serious adverse effects.Supporting an Unproven Financial Blockbuster Drug Over the Tried and TrueAs the Director of the NIH’s Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Fauci has been brimming over with enthusiasm for his clinical trial for <> remdesivir, claiming in advance that it was the greatest hope for stemming the epidemic coronavirus. At the same time, he has publicly criticized President Trump for promoting hydroxychloroquine without scientific clinical trials. This is a remarkable double standard.Clearly, Fauci is a man on a mission—a mission to suppress one drug and to promote another. Because of Fauci, Trump has been ridiculed in the media for promoting <> hydroxychloroquine, an old and inexpensive drug with a great safety record in which he has no personal interest. But Fauci’s personal and professional interests drive him to promote a relatively untried experimental drug with two previously bad outcomes, including no clinical benefit and serious adverse effects.Fauci chastised President Trump for showing enthusiasm for hydroxychloroquine in the absence of controlled clinical trials; but Fauci did nothing to conduct those much-needed trials. Instead, he rushed to sponsor remdesivir, and to boast about it, in the face of two existing negative clinical trials and before the drug had any positive clinical trials.Fortunately, there are other <> physicians and scientists both in the news and on Twitter, who have spotted that Fauci is untrustworthy in his handling of the trials. Nonetheless, because of the way the media are hyping remdesivir, and with the fervent support of both NIH and the FDA, a new "blockbuster" drug is being created out of nothing. Remdesivir has little hope of genuinely helping people; and it can cause increased inflammation of the lung. However, unless the political tide turns on Fauci, remdesivir remains guaranteed to further enrich and empower the pharmaceutical empire and those who prosper within it, such as Anthony Fauci.Remdesivir: A Cascading Failure from the BeginningFauci has been manipulating the remdesivir trials from the beginning. One example was highlighted by a May 1, 2020 headline in <> The Washington Post: "Government researchers changed metric to measure coronavirus drug remdesivir during clinical trial."Government clinical trial investigators changed the primary metric for measuring the success of Gilead’s experimental drug remdesivir as a coronavirus treatment two weeks before Anthony S. Fauci’s announcement that the drug would be the new "standard of care."When clinical trials are begun, the researchers are required to establish the "endpoints," including a "primary endpoint," which is the major measure of outcome and the main criterion for success. This is what The Washington Post was referring to as the metrics. The endpoints for remdesivir are listed in the original plan for the trials called the protocols. <> These initial endpoints for proving the success of remdesivir included truly meaningful criteria, such as the all-important lowered fatality rate and complete recovery.Fauci Redefines Recovery to Included People Partially Disabled and Living at Home on OxygenAs the trial continued, it must have become apparent to Fauci that his drug was not going to reduce mortality or even lead to complete recovery. When all the meaningful criteria for success were dropped, <> the one primary marker for success became "time to recovery"—except recovery included patients who remained hospitalized or who were at home requiring limitations on their activities and/or requiring oxygen. Here are the <> official criteria for "success":1. Time to recovery [Time Frame: Day 1 through Day 29 ]Day of recovery is defined as the first day on which the subject satisfies one of the following three categories from the ordinal scale: 1) Hospitalized, not requiring supplemental oxygen – no longer requires ongoing medical care; 2) Not hospitalized, limitation on activities and/or requiring home oxygen; 3) Not hospitalized, no limitations on activities.What Fauci masterminded is so unbelievable that it needs repeating. Not only did recovery time become the single primary criterion for improvement, "recovery" was achieved even with the patient remaining in the hospital or returning home with limited activities and/or requiring oxygen. The miracle drug, by sleight of Fauci’s hand, had been surreptitiously reduced to a second-rate treatment that statistically does not save lives or lead to complete recovery.Fauci’s <> NIH press release estimated that remdesivir shortened the recovery time for the COVID-19 illness by a mere four days (from 15 to 11). But as inadequate as that sounds for a wonder drug’s only achievement, it looks ridiculous when realizing that Fauci still had to reinvent the concept of recovery in order to get those limited results, ultimately stretching the concept of recovery beyond the limits of reason or sound medicine in order to fake effectiveness.Although the NIH study for remdesivir failed to show a statistically significant reduction in deaths, NIH and the media have emphasized that there was a "trend" in a positive direction. That’s an unscientific pipedream. A "trend," for example, is not a sufficient indicator of success for the FDA to approve a drug. If Fauci and his colleagues really thought the "trend" was going to be meaningful, they never would have prematurely ended the study before getting statistically significant evidence for this all-important failed result.Finally, remdesivir must be given intravenously over a ten-day period. This procedure itself has risks. It also limits its use to patients sick enough to be hospitalized. As a result, it cannot be used as hydroxychloroquine is used around the world, as a prophylaxis and as a treatment to be given at the earliest signs of the disease before any need for hospitalizaton.Good News from a Corrupt VA StudyMeanwhile, the corrupt Veterans Administration study that claimed to show that hydroxychloroquine was useless and dangerous instead documented that it was saving lives. When we re-evaluated the study, <> publishing a report and a video, we found that the hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin combination was lifesaving. The VA evaluated one group of patients who did so well that they did not require any specific medication or ventilation. They were the most well of the coronavirus patients with the very lowest death risk. The VA study then evaluated a group of the sickest patients, the ones most likely to die, who were given the more hazardous drug combination hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin.How did the death rate of the sickest patients with combination drug treatment compare to the most well patients needing no drug treatment? There was no statistical difference in the death rates in the most well and the sickest groups. That is, the hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin combination was so astonishingly effective that it reduced the death among the sickest to the level of the most well patients. That’s a potential miracle drug!A few days after we criticized the VA study, the Secretary of the VA made the TV rounds pointing out the inadequacy of the study, while praising the success of hydroxychloroquine in helping VA patients. He <> memorialized his opinions in a memo on April 29, 2020.Valid studies of this combination drug regimen, perhaps with the addition of zinc, are needed. In the meanwhile, when a study aimed at discrediting a drug unintentionally turns out to show that in a combination it reduces the mortality rate of the sickest patients to the level of the most well patients, we need to take the finding seriously.Frontline Physicians Around the World Oppose Fauci’s ViewpointMeanwhile, hydroxychloroquine, sometimes in combination with zinc and/or azithromycin, was already being widely used to treat COVID-19 around the world and had numerous clinical testimonials and informal studies supporting it. We have made some of these available in our Coronavirus Resource Center on <> Tragically, and mainly due to Fauci, governors in states like New York and Michigan continued to illegally limit the availability of hydroxychloroquine to doctors.A <> May 7, 2020 survey of global physicians found that 55% were using hydroxychloroquine and 21% were using remdesivir. The survey concluded, "Remdesivir and Hydroxychloroquine are perceived as almost equally safe and effective." But as noted, hydroxychloroquine is safer, has enormously greater treatment experience behind it, and it is given orally for prophylaxis and early treatment, while remdesivir is given intravenously to hospitalized patients.Physicians around the world are resisting the growing <> political attacks on hydroxychloroquine. Unfortunately, we fear that fake promotionals from NIH and the FDA will make remdesivir a financial bonanza for Gilead and those associated with the company. For decades, this is how drug profiteering has worked. Better, safer, and much less expensive generic drugs are pushed aside by a deluge of advertisements, press releases, and positive news coverage for newly approved drugs, which too often are more dangerous and less effective.Fauci’s Corrupt Treatment PanelHow deeply in bed was Fauci with Gilead, the powerful, wealthy drug company that makes remdesivir? Was Fauci bending over backward to favor Gilead?Fauci’s institute has a panel for the purpose of developing treatment guidelines for the pandemic on an ongoing basis. It is called "NIH COVID-19 Treatment Guidelines." <> Hundreds of drugs were coming up the pipeline seeking federal approval for treating the novel coronavirus. On a government treatment advisory panel, would you expect to find a dominant membership block that was financially indebted to one drug company with a single drug, while almost every other drug company and their drugs were left out?Of the 50 members on Fauci’s committee to set treatment guidelines, <> only 11 had financial ties to drug companies. But nine of the eleven had financial ties to Gilead, remdesivir’s manufacturer. The ties consisted of "Research Support," "Consultant," and "Advisory Board." Put simply, from the beginning, Fauci was stacking his treatment guidelines committee with Gilead.It is no surprise that the stacked panel, before any clinical trials, came out strongly in favor of the highly experimental remdesivir and wholly against the commonly used hydroxychloroquine: "On the basis of preliminary clinical trial data, the Panel recommends the investigational antiviral agent remdesivir for the treatment of COVID-19 in hospitalized patients with severe disease" and "The Panel does not recommend remdesivir for the treatment of mild or moderate COVID-19 <> outside the setting of a clinical trial" (bold in original). Fauci’s outcome was predetermined or "fixed" from the start. This is not science and Fauci was acting like a promoter rather than a scientist.What did Gilead get from Fauci? Everything. NIH organized and funded their trial, saving Gilead in the range of $100,000,000 dollars and, more importantly, years of time, while Fauci did his best to clean up any messy results. The remdesivir clinical trial was "sponsored by the <> National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)" and was "the first clinical trial launched in the United States to evaluate an experimental treatment for COVID-19." Gilead got what looked like a sure-thing bonanza from Fauci and Fauci is now desperately dancing around trying to keep it alive. His last-ditch magic trick was to pronounce the trial a success and then to cancel it before completion, so that the results could never be known.Fauci was so comfortably intimate with Gilead that he dared to openly stack the treatment guidelines panel with people on the company’s payroll, while announcing the predetermined outcome in favor of remdesivir and against hydroxychloroquine in these same treatment guidelines. If Fauci can be so shameless about such obviously corrupt behavior, how many even worse offenses would he be willing to perpetrate in secrecy?Dr. Fauci is treated with inordinate respect by the media and politicians. When challenged on one occasion by Rand Paul, a senator who is a physician, Fauci replied smugly that he relied wholly on the scientific data. He spoke as if he—Dr. Anthony Fauci—were the sole paragon of objectivity and scientific acumen. This was an arrogant way to speak to a fellow physician and besides nothing could be further from the truth. Fauci’s handling of the NIH trials for remdesivir, and his compulsive rejection of hydroxychloroquine, are more consistent with a master manipulator than an objective scientist. It no longer makes sense—and it is no longer safe—to listen to Fauci’s voice in the scientific and public discussion of the current coronavirus pandemic.(3) LancetGate: Hydroxychloroquine versus Gilead’s Remdesivir - Michel Chossudovsky "Scientific Corona Lies" and Big Pharma Corruption. Hydroxychloroquine versus Gilead’s RemdesivirBy Prof Michel ChossudovskyGlobal Research, July 05, 2020Minor updates and additions on July 6, 2020IntroductionThere is an ongoing battle to suppress Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), a cheap and effective drug for the treatment of Covid-19. The campaign against HCQ is carried out through slanderous political statements, media smears, not to mention an authoritative peer reviewed "evaluation" published on May 22nd by The Lancet, which was based on fake figures and test trials.The study was allegedly based on data analysis of 96,032 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 between Dec 20, 2019, and April 14, 2020 from 671 hospitals Worldwide. The database had been fabricated. The objective was to kill the Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) cure on behalf of Big Pharma.While The Lancet article was retracted, the media casually blamed "a tiny US based company" named Surgisphere whose employees included "a sci-fi writer and an adult content model" for spreading "flawed data" (Guardian). This Chicago based outfit was accused of having misled both the WHO and national governments, inciting them to ban HCQ. None of those trial tests actually took place.While the blame was placed on Surgisphere, the unspoken truth (which neither the scientific community nor the media have acknowledged) is that the study was coordinated by Harvard professor Mandeep Mehra under the auspices of Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) which is a partner of the Harvard Medical School.When the scam was revealed, Dr. Mandeep Mehra who holds the Harvey Distinguished Chair of Medicine at  Brigham and Women’s Hospital apologized:I have always performed my research in accordance with the highest ethical and professional guidelines. However, we can never forget the responsibility we have as researchers to scrupulously ensure that we rely on data sources that adhere to our high standards.It is now clear to me that in my hope to contribute this research during a time of great need, I did not do enough to ensure that the data source was appropriate for this use. For that, and for all the disruptions – both directly and indirectly – I am truly sorry. (emphasis added)Mandeep R. Mehra, MD, MSC  (official statement on BWH website)But that "truly sorry" note was just the tip of the iceberg. Why?Studies on Gilead Science’s Remdesivir and Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) Were Conducted Simultaneously by Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH)While The Lancet report (May 22, 2020) coordinated by Dr. Mandeep Mehra was intended "to kill" the legitimacy of HCQ as a cure of Covid-19, another important (related) study was being carried out (concurrently) at BWH pertaining to Remdesivir on behalf of Gilead Sciences Inc. Dr. Francisco Marty, a specialist in Infectious Disease and Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School was entrusted with coordination of the clinical trial tests of the antiviral medication Remdesivir under Brigham’s contract with Gilead Sciences Inc:Brigham and Women’s Hospital began enrolling patients in two clinical trials for Gilead’s antiviral medication remdesivir. The Brigham is one of multiple clinical trial sites for a Gilead-initiated study of the drug in 600 participants with moderate coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and a Gilead-initiated study of 400 participants with severe COVID-19.… If the results are promising, this could lead to FDA approval, and if they aren’t, it gives us critical information in the fight against COVID-19 and allows us to move on to other therapies."While Dr. Mandeep Mehra was not directly involved in the Gilead Remdesevir BWH study under the supervision of his colleague Dr. Francisco Marty, he nonetheless had contacts with Gilead Sciences Inc: "He participated in a conference sponsored by Gilead in early April 2020 as part of the Covid-19 debate" (France Soir, May 23, 2020)What was the intent of his (failed) study? To undermine the legitimacy of Hydroxychloroquine?According to France Soir, in a report published after The Lancet Retraction:The often evasive answers produced by Dr Mandeep R. Mehra, … professor at Harvard Medical School, did not produce confidence, fueling doubt instead about the integrity of this retrospective study and its results. (France Soir, June 5, 2020)Was Dr. Mandeep Mehra in conflict of interest? (That is a matter for BWH and the Harvard Medical School to decide upon).Who are the Main Actors? Dr. Anthony Fauci, advisor to Donald Trump, portrayed as "America’s top infectious disease expert" has played a key role in smearing the HCQ cure which had been approved years earlier by the CDC as well as providing legitimacy to Gilead’s Remdesivir.Dr. Fauci has been the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) since the Reagan administration. He is known to act as a mouthpiece for Big Pharma.Dr. Fauci launched Remdesivir in late June (see details below). According to Fauci, Remdesevir is the "corona wonder drug" developed by Gilead Science Inc. It’s a $1.6 billion dollar bonanza.Gilead Sciences Inc: HistoryGilead Sciences Inc is a Multibillion dollar bio-pharmaceutical company which is now involved in developing and marketing Remdesivir. Gilead has a long history. It has the backing of major investment conglomerates including the Vanguard Group and Capital Research & Management Co, among others. It has developed ties with the US Government.In 1999 Gilead Sciences Inc, developed Tamiflu (used as a treatment of seasonal influenza and bird flu). At the  time, Gilead Sciences Inc was headed by Donald Rumsfeld (1997-2001), who later joined the George W. Bush administration as Secretary of Defense (2001-2006). Rumsfeld was responsible for coordinating the illegal and criminal wars on Afghanistan (2001) and Iraq (2003).Rumsfeld maintained his links to Gilead Sciences Inc throughout his tenure as Secretary of Defense (2001-2006). According to CNN Money (2005): "The prospect of a bird flu outbreak … was very good news for Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld [who still owned Gilead stocks] and other politically connected investors in Gilead Sciences".Anthony Fauci has been in charge of the NIAID since 1984, using his position as "a go between" the US government and Big Pharma. During Rumsfeld’s tenure as Secretary of Defense, the budget allocated to bio-terrorism increased substantially, involving contracts with Big Pharma including Gilead Sciences Inc. Anthony Fauci considered that the money allocated to bio-terrorism in early 2002 would:"accelerate our understanding of the biology and pathogenesis of microbes that can be used in attacks, and the biology of the microbes’ hosts — human beings and their immune systems. One result should be more effective vaccines with less toxicity." (WPo report)In 2008, Dr. Anthony Fauci was granted the Presidential Medal of Freedom by president George W. Bush "for his determined and aggressive efforts to help others live longer and healthier lives."The 2020 Gilead Sciences Inc Remdesivir Project We will be focussing on key documents (and events)ChronologyFebruary 21: Initial Release pertaining to NIH-NIAID Remdesivir placebo test trialApril 10: The Gilead Sciences Inc study published in the NEJM on the "Compassionate Use of Remdesivir"April 29: NIH Release: Study on Remdesivir (Report published on May 22 in NEJM)May 22, The BWH-Harvard Study on Hydroxychloroquine coordinated by Dr. Mandeep Mehra published in The LancetMay 22, Remdesivir for the Treatment of Covid-19 — Preliminary Report National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, New England Journal of Medicine, (NEJM)June 5: The (fake) Lancet Report (May 22) on HCQ is Retracted.June 29, Fauci announcement. The $1.6 Billion Remdevisir HHS Agreement with Gilead Sciences IncApril 10: The Gilead Sciences Inc. study published in the NEJM on the "Compassionate Use of Remdesivir"A Gilead sponsored report was published in New England Journal of Medicine in an article entitled  "Compassionate Use of Remdesivir for Patients with Severe Covid-19" . It was co-authored by an impressive list of 56 distinguished medical doctors and scientists, many of whom were recipients of consulting fees from Gilead Sciences Inc.Gilead Sciences Inc. funded the study which included several staff members as co-authors.The testing included a total of 61 patients [who] received at least one dose of remdesivir on or before March 7, 2020; 8 of these patients were excluded because of missing postbaseline information (7 patients) and an erroneous remdesivir start date (1 patient) … Of the 53 remaining patients included in this analysis, 40 (75%) received the full 10-day course of remdesivir, 10 (19%) received 5 to 9 days of treatment, and 3 (6%) fewer than 5 days of treatment.The NEJM article states that "Gilead Sciences Inc began accepting requests from clinicians for compassionate use of remdesivir on January 25, 2020". From whom, From Where? According to the WHO (January 30, 2020) there were 82 cases in 18 countries outside China of which 5 were in the US, 5 in France and 3 in Canada.Several prominent physicians and scientists have cast  doubt on the Compassionate Use of Remdesivir study conducted by Gilead, focussing on the small size of the trial. Ironically, the number of patients in the test  is less that the number of co-authors: "53 patients" versus "56 co-authors"Below we provide excerpts of scientific statements on the Gilead NEJM project (Science Media Centre emphasis added) published immediately following the release of the NEJM article:"‘Compassionate use’ is better described as using an unlicensed therapy to treat a patient because there are no other treatments available. Research based on this kind of use should be treated with extreme caution because there is no control group or randomisation, which are some of the hallmarks of good practice in clinical trials. Prof Duncan Richard, Clinical Therapeutics, University of Oxford."It is critical not to over-interpret this study. Most importantly, it is impossible to know the outcome for this relatively small group of patients had they not received remdesivir. Dr Stephen Griffin, Associate Professor, School of Medicine, University of Leeds."The research is interesting but doesn’t prove anything at this point: the data are from a small and uncontrolled study.  Simon Maxwell, Professor of Clinical Pharmacology and Prescribing, University of Edinburgh."The data from this paper are almost uninterpretable. It is very surprising, perhaps even unethical, that the New England Journal of Medicine has published it. It would be more appropriate to publish the data on the website of the pharmaceutical company that has sponsored and written up the study. At least Gilead have been clear that this has not been done in the way that a high quality scientific paper would be written.  Prof Stephen Evans, Professor of Pharmacoepidemiology, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine."It’s very hard to draw useful conclusions from uncontrolled studies like this particularly with a new disease where we really don’t know what to expect and with wide variations in outcomes between places and over time. One really has to question the ethics of failing to do randomisation – this study really represents more than anything else, a missed opportunity." Prof Adam Finn, Professor of Paediatrics, University of Bristol.To review the complete document of Science Media Centre pertaining to expert assessments click hereApril 29: The National Institutes of Health (NIH) Study on Remdevisir.On April 29th following the publication of the Gilead Sciences Inc Study in the NEJM on April 10, a press release of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) on Remdevisir was released.  The full document was published on May 22, by the NEJM under the title:Remdesivir for the Treatment of Covid-19 — Preliminary Report (NEJM)The study had been initiated on February 21, 2020. The title of the April 29 Press Release was:"Peer-reviewed data shows remdesivir for COVID-19 improves time to recovery"It’s a government sponsored report which includes preliminary data from a randomized trial involving 1063 hospitalized patients. The results of the trial labelled Adaptive COVID-19 Treatment Trial (ACTT) are preliminary, conducted under the helm of Dr. Fauci’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID):An independent data and safety monitoring board (DSMB) overseeing the trial met on April 27 to review data and shared their interim analysis with the study team. Based upon their review of the data, they noted that remdesivir was better than placebo from the perspective of the primary endpoint, time to recovery, a metric often used in influenza trials. Recovery in this study was defined as being well enough for hospital discharge or returning to normal activity level.Preliminary results indicate that patients who received remdesivir had a 31% faster time to recovery than those who received placebo (p<0.001). Specifically, the median time to recovery was 11 days for patients treated with remdesivir compared with 15 days for those who received placebo. Results also suggested a survival benefit, with a mortality rate of 8.0% for the group receiving remdesivir versus 11.6% for the placebo group (p=0.059).  (emphasis added)In the NIH’s earlier February 21, 2020 report (released at the outset of the study), the methodology was described as follows:… A randomized, controlled clinical trial to evaluate the safety and efficacy of the investigational antiviral remdesivir in hospitalized adults diagnosed with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) …Numbers. Where? When?The February 21 report confirmed that the first trial participant was "an American who was repatriated after being quarantined on the Diamond Princess cruise ship" that docked in Yokohama (Japanese Territorial Waters). "Thirteen people repatriated by the U.S. State Department from the Diamond Princess cruise ship" were selected as patients for the placebo trial test. Ironically, at the outset of the study, 58.7% of the "confirmed cases" Worldwide (542 cases out of 924) (outside China), were on the Diamond Cruise Princess from which the initial trial placebo patients were selected.Where and When: The trial test in the 68 selected sites? That came at a later date because on February 19th (WHO data), the US had recorded only 15 positive cases (see Table Below)."A total of 68 sites ultimately joined the study—47 in the United States and 21 in countries in Europe and Asia." (emphasis added)In the final May 22 NEJM report entitled Remdesivir for the Treatment of Covid-19 — Preliminary Report:There were 60 trial sites and 13 subsites in the United States (45 sites), Denmark (8), the United Kingdom (5), Greece (4), Germany (3), Korea (2), Mexico (2), Spain (2), Japan (1), and Singapore (1). Eligible patients were randomly assigned in a 1:1 ratio to receive either remdesivir or placebo. Randomization was stratified by study site and disease severity at enrollmentThe Washington Post applauded Anthony Fauci’s announcement (April 29):"The preliminary results, disclosed at the White House by Anthony S. Fauci, …  fall short of the magic bullet or cure… But with no approved treatments for Covid-19,[Lie] Fauci said, it will become the standard of care for hospitalized patients …The data shows that remdisivir has a clear-cut, significant, positive effect in diminishing the time to recovery," Fauci said.The government’s first rigorous clinical trial of the experimental drug remdesivir as a coronavirus treatment delivered mixed results to the medical community Wednesday — but rallied stock markets and raised hopes that an early weapon to help some patients was at hand.The preliminary results, disclosed at the White House by Anthony Fauci, chief of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, which led the placebo-controlled trial found that the drug accelerated the recovery of hospitalized patients but had only a marginal benefit in the rate of death.… Fauci’s remarks boosted speculation that the Food and Drug Administration would seek emergency use authorization that would permit doctors to prescribe the drug.In addition to clinical trials, remdesivir has been given to more than 1,000 patients under compassionate use. [also refers to the Gilead study published on April 10 in the NEJM]The study, involving [more than] 1,000 patients at 68 sites in the United States and around the world (??), offers the first evidence (??) from a large (??), randomized (??) clinical study of remdesivir’s effectiveness against COVID-19.The NIH placebo test study provided "preliminary results". While the placebo trial test was "randomized", the overall selection of patients at the 68 sites was not fully randomized. See the full report.May 22: The Fake Lancet Report on Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ)It is worth noting that the full report of the NIH-NIAID) entitled Remdesivir for the Treatment of Covid-19 — Preliminary Report was released on May 22, 2020 in the NEJM, on the same day as the controversial Lancet report on Hydroxychloroquine.Immediately folllowing its publication, the media went into high gear, smearing the HCQ cure, while applauding the NIH-NIASD report released on the same day.Remdesivir, the only drug cleared to treat Covid-19, sped the recovery time of patients with the disease, … "It’s a very safe and effective drug," said Eric Topol, founder and director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute. "We now have a definite first efficacious drug for Covid-19, which is a major step forward and will be built upon with other drugs, [and drug] combinations."When the Lancet HCQ article by  Bingham-Harvard was retracted on June 5, it was too late, it received minimal media coverage. Despite the Retraction, the HCQ cure "had been killed".June 29: Fauci Greenlight. The $1.6 Billion Remdesivir Contract with Gilead Sciences IncDr. Anthony Fauci granted the "Greenlight" to Gilead Sciences Inc. on June 29, 2020.The semi-official US government NIH-NIAID sponsored report (May 22) entitled Remdesivir for the Treatment of Covid-19 — Preliminary Report (NEJM) was used to justify a major agreement with Gilead Sciences Inc.The Report was largely funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) headed by Dr. Anthony Fauci and the National Institutes of Health (NIH).On June 29, based on the findings of the NIH-NIAID Report published in the NEJM, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced on behalf of the Trump Adminstration an agreement to secure large supplies of the remdesivir drug from Gilead Sciences Inc. for the treatment of Covid-19 in America’s private hospitals and clinics.The earlier Gilead study based on scanty test results published in the NEJM (April 10), of 53 cases (and 56 co-authors) was not highlighted. The results of this study had been  questioned by several prominent physicians and scientists.Who will be able to afford Remdisivir? 500,000 doses of Remdesivir are envisaged at $3,200 per patient, namely $1.6 billion (see the study by Elizabeth Woodworth)The Drug was also approved for marketing in the European Union. under the brandname Veklury.If this contract is implemented as planned, it represents for Gilead Science Inc. and the recipient US private hospitals and clinics a colossal amount of money.[error in above title according to HHS: $3200]According to The Trump Administration’s HHS Secretary Alex Azar (June 29, 2020):"To the extent possible, we want to ensure that any American patient who needs remdesivir can get it. [at $3200] The Trump Administration is doing everything in our power to learn more about life-saving therapeutics for COVID-19 and secure access to these options for the American people."Remdesivir versus Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) Careful timing:The Lancet study (published on May 22) was intended to undermine the legitimacy of Hydroxychloroquine as an effective cure to Covid-19, with a view to sustaining the $1.6 billion agreement between the HHS and Gilead Sciences Inc. on June 29th. The legitmacy of this agreement rested on the May 22 NIH-NIAID study in the NEJM which was considered "preliminary".What Dr. Fauci failed to acknowledge is that Chloroquine had been "studied" and tested fifteen years ago by the CDC as a drug to be used against coronavirus infections.  And that Hydroxychloroquine has been used recently in the treatment of Covid-19 in several countries.According to the Virology Journal (2005) "Chloroquine is a potent inhibitor of SARS coronavirus infection and spread". It was used in the SARS-1 outbreak in 2002. It had the endorsement of the CDC.HCQ is not only effective, it is "inexpensive" when compared to Remdesivir, at an estimated "$3120 for a US Patient with private insurance".Below are excerpts of an interview of Harvard’s Professor Mehra (who undertook the May 22 Lancet study) with France Soir published immediately following the publication of the Lancet report (prior to its Retraction).Dr. Mandeep Mehra: In our study, it is fairly obvious that the lack of benefit and the risk of toxicity observed for hydroxychloroquine are fairly reliable. [referring to the May 22 Lancet study]France Soir: Do you have the data for Remdesivir?MM: Yes, we have the data, but the number of patients is too small for us to be able to conclude in one way or another.FS: As you know, in France, there is a pros and cons battle over hydroxychloroquine which has turned into a public health issue even involving the financial lobbying of pharmaceutical companies. Why not measure the effect of one against the other to put an end to all speculation?  …MM: In fact, there is no rational basis for testing Remdesivir versus hydroxychloroquine. On the one hand, Remdesivir has shown that there is no risk of mortality and that there is a reduction in recovery time. On the other hand, for hydroxychloroquine it is the opposite: it has never been shown any advantage and most studies are small or inconclusive In addition, our study shows that there are harmful effects.It would therefore be difficult and probably unethical to compare a drug with demonstrated harmfulness to a drug with at least a glimmer of hope.FS: You said that there is no basis for testing or comparing Remdesivir with hydroxychloroquine, do you think you have done everything to conclude that hydroxychloroquine is dangerous?MM: Exactly. …All we are saying is that once you have been infected (5 to 7 days after) to the point of having to be hospitalized with a severe viral load, the use of hydroxychloroquine and its derivative is not effective.The damage from the virus is already there and the situation is beyond repair. With this treatment [HCQ] it can generate more complicationsFS Mandeep Mehra declared that he had no conflict of interest with the laboratories and that this study was financed from the endowment funds of the professor’s chair.He participated in a conference sponsored by Gilead in early April 2020 as part of the Covid-19 debate.France Soir, translated by the author, emphasis added, May 23, 2020)In Annex, see the followup article by France Soir published after the scam surrounding the data base of Dr. Mehra’s Lancet report was revealed.Concluding Remarks Lies and Corruption to the nth Degree involving Dr. Anthony Fauci, "The Boston Connection" and Gilead Sciences Inc.The Gilead Sciences Inc. Remdesivir study (50+ authors) was published in the New England Journal of Medicine (April 10, 2020).It was followed by the NIH-NIAID Remdesivir for the Treatment of Covid-19 — Preliminary Report on May 22, 2020 in the NEJM.  And on that same day, May 22, the "fake report" on Hydroxychloroquine by BWH-Harvard Dr. Mehra was published by The Lancet.Harvard Medical School and the BWH bear responsibility for having hosted and financed the fake Lancet report on HCQ coordinated by Dr. Mandeep Mehra.Is there conflict of interest? BWH was simultaneously involved in a study on Remdesivir in contract with Gilead Sciences, Inc.While the Lancet report coordinated by Harvard’s Dr. Mehra was retracted, it nonetheless served the interests of Gilead Sciences Inc.It is important that an independent scientific and medical assessment be undertaken, respectively of the Gilead Sciences Inc New England Journal of Medicine (NEMJ) peer reviewed study (April 10, 2020) as well as the NIH-NIAID study also published in the NEJM (May 22, 2020).ANNEXRetraction by France SoirThe fraud concerning the Lancet Report was revealed in early June. France Soir in a subsequent article (June 5, 2020) points to the Boston Connection: La connexion de Boston, namely the insiduous relationship between Gilead Sciences Inc and Professor Mehra, Harvard Medical School as well as the two related Boston based hospitals involved.(excerpts here, to access the complete text click here translation from French by France Soir, emphasis in the original article)The often evasive answers produced by Dr Mandeep R. Mehra, a physician specializing in cardiovascular surgery and professor at Harvard Medical School, did not produce confidence, fueling doubt instead about the integrity of this retrospective study and its results.… However, the reported information that Dr. Mehra had attended a conference sponsored by Gilead – producer of remdesivir, a drug in direct competition with hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) – early in April called for further investigationIt is important to keep in mind that Dr. Mandeep Mehra has a practice at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) in Boston.That study relied on the shared medical records of 8,910 patients in 169 hospitals around the world, also by Surgisphere.Funding for the study was "Supported by the William Harvey Chair in Cardiovascular Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. The development and maintenance of the collaborative surgical outcomes database was funded by Surgisphere."The study published on May 22 sought to evaluate the efficacy or otherwise of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine, alone or in combination with a macrolide antibiotic.  …It is therefore noteworthy that within 3 weeks, 2 large observational retrospective studies on large populations – 96,032 and 8,910 patients – spread around the world were published in two different journals by Dr. Mehra, Dr. Desai and other co-authors using the database of Surgisphere, Dr. Desai’s company.These two practising physicians and surgeons seem to have an exceptional working capacity associated with the gift of ubiquity.The date of May 22 is also noteworthy because on the very same day, the date of the publication in The Lancet of the highly accusatory study against HCQ,  another study was published in the New England Journal of Medicine concerning the results of a clinical trial of…remdesivir.In the conclusion of this randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, "remdesivir was superior to placebo in shortening the time to recovery in adults hospitalized with Covid-19 and evidence of lower respiratory tract infection."Concretely: on the same day, May 22nd, one study demeaned HCQ  in one journal while another claimed evidence of attenuation on some patients through remdesivir in another journal.It should be noted that one of the main co-authors, Elizabeth "Libby"* Hohmann, represents one of the participating hospitals, the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, also affiliated with Harvard Medical School, as is the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, where Dr. Mandeep Mehra practices.Coincidence, probably.Upon further investigation, we discovered that the first 3 major clinical trials on Gilead’s remdesivir were conducted by these two hospitals:"While COVID-19 continues to circle the globe with scientists following on its trail, Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) are leading the search for effective treatment."Both hospitals are conducting clinical trials of remdesivir."MGH has joined what the National Institute of Health (NIH) describe as the first clinical trial in the United States of an experimental treatment for COVID-19, sponsored by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of NIH. MGH is currently the only hospital in New England to participate in this trial, according to a list of sites shared by the hospital." It’s a gigantic undertaking, with patients registered in some 50 sites across the country, getting better."The NIH trial, which can be adapted to evaluate other treatments, aims to determine whether the drug relieves the respiratory problems and other symptoms of COVID-19, helping patients leave hospital earlier.**As a reminder, the NIAID/NIH is led by Antony Fauci, a staunch opponent of HCQ.Coincidence, probably."At the Brigham, two additional trials initiated by Gilead, the drug developer, will determine whether it alleviates symptoms in patients with moderate to severe illness over five- and ten-days courses. These trials will also be randomized, but not placebo controlled, and will include 1,000 patients at sites worldwide. Those patients, noted Francisco Marty, MD, Brigham physician and study co-investigator, will likely be recruited at an unsettlingly rapid clip."As a result, the first major clinical trials on remdesivir launched on March 20, whose results are highly important for Gilead, are being led by the MGH and BWH in Boston, precisely where Dr. Mehra, the main author of the May 22nd HCQ trial, is practising.Small world! Coincidence, again, probably.Dr. Marty at BWH expected to have results two months later. Indeed, in recent days, several US media outlets have reported Gilead’s announcements of positive results from the remdesivir clinical trials in Boston.:"Encouraging results from a new study published Wednesday on remdesivir for the treatment of patients with COVID-19.**Brigham and Dr. Francisco Marty worked on this study, and he says the results show that there is no major difference between treating a patient with a five-day versus a 10-day regimen.…"Gilead Announces Results of Phase 3 Remdesivir Trial in Patients with Moderate COVID-19– One study shows that the 5-day treatment of remdesivir resulted in significantly greater clinical improvement compared to treatment with the standard of care alone– The data come on top of the body of evidence from previous studies demonstrating the benefits of remdesivir in hospitalized patients with IDVOC-19"We now have three randomized controlled trials demonstrating that remdesivir improved clinical outcomes by several different measures," Gilead plans to submit the complete data for publication in a peer-reviewed journal in the coming weeks.These results announced by Gilead a few days after the May 22 publication of the study in the Lancet demolishing HCQ, a study whose main author is Dr. Mehra, are probably again a coincidence.So many coincidences adds up to coincidences? Really ?