Researcher Confesses: Implicates Dr. Mikovits in Theft of Materials from Whittemore Peterson Institute ("WPI")
by CORT on NOVEMBER 22, 2011
Dr. Judy Mikovits has had a difficult couple of months. First the BWG study indicated the tests she developed for XMRV were not valid, then evidence of contamination resulted in a partial retraction of the original Science paper, then she was accused of doctoring a photo at a conference and in the original Science paper prompting several investigation, then she was terminated from her job at the WPI, then she was served with a lawsuit claiming that she had stolen data from the WPI and since last week, she’s being in the Ventura County jail waiting arraignment as a fugitive from justice because, against court orders, she crossed the Nevada border into California. She must be wondering if it could get any worse. It has - but first some background.
The latest episode began with a lawsuit filed by the WPI a month after Dr. Mikovits termination claiming that Dr. Mikovits had taken critical notebooks and flash drives from the WPI after she was fired. According to ScienceInsider Dr Mikovits had the only key to the desk the notebooks were kept in. After Dr. Mikovits termination the WPI had the desk manufacturer open the desk for them and found it empty of her and other researchers notebooks. A source at the WPI said that it was her understanding that Dr. Mikovits desk had been ‘emptied out’ and up to five years research data was gone. They then served notice of the theft to the police and a police investigation began.
Why are these laboratory notebooks so important? Because they serve as the document of record in scientific research and are specially manufactured and used in specific ways…..
WIKIPEDIA – A lab notebook is a primary record of research…..To ensure that the data cannot be easily altered, notebooks with permanently bound and numbered pages are often recommended. Researchers are often encouraged to write only with unereasable pen, to sign and date each page, and to have their notebooks inspected periodically by another scientist who can read and understand it. All of these guidelines can be useful in proving exactly when a discovery was made, in the case of a patent dispute.
After several failed attempts to get the materials back the WPI filed a lawsuit a month later to compel Dr. Mikovits to return notebooks, flash drives, information on her laptop computer and information in her email account. In a blog titled “Wings of Hope: Our Responsibility” the WPI stated that the failed efforts to get the materials back forced had forced them to engage in ‘costly litigation”. The data loss included 12-20 notebooks dating back five years. The WPI stated that, "the costs of legal action pale in comparison to the years of expenses incurred for researcher salaries, equipment, and supplies to generate this valuable work”.
(Dr. Mikovits contract stipulated that all intellectual property she produced while under the employ of the WPI was the property of the WPI.) The WPI also won a temporary restraining order stopping Dr. Mikovits from “destroying, deleting or altering’ any of the materials that may be in her position.
For her part, through her attorney Dr. Mikovits stated that she received notice of her firing on her cell phone and then immediately left for her home in Southern California without visiting the Institute again. She stated she had placed her keys in unlocked drawers in her lab as was her custom so that other lab personnel would have access to the notebooks. Her attorney stated that:
Dr. Mikovits was not and is not in possession of the lab notebooks or any WPI intellectual property. A number of individuals have keys to the office and lab, including the administrative staff, lab staff and custodial.
Instead of Dr. Mikovits returning the materials her attorney requested that her notebooks be returned to her so she can continue to work on the grants she won while employed at the WPI. Her attorney stated that:
"Dr. Mikovits’ notebooks, as well as those of the employees whom she supervised, should be returned to Dr. Mikovits so she can fulfill her responsibilities as PI on these government grants and corporate contacts".
The WPI lawsuit does not request just the return of the materials; if found guilty it also requests that Dr. Mikovits be liable for attorneys fees, punitive damages and other damages to be proven at trial – potentially leaving Dr. Mikovits with a substantial financial burden if the WPI prevails.
The Judge overseeing the case ordered Dr. Mikovits not to leave the state of Nevada until the case was resolved. Dr. Mikovits left Nevada and was reportedly arrested at her home in Ventura County on the 18th on felony charges of fleeing justice. She was not allowed to post bail and is being arraigned today.
Research Assistant Confesses Theft - in a legal filing pertaining to a preliminary injunction against Dr. Judy Mikovits the Whittemore Peterson Institute provided evidence late last night that Dr. Mikovits engineered the theft of the research materials from the WPI lab after her termination.
In an affidavit Max Pfost, a researcher working at the Max Pfost, admitted that he removed the documents/flash drives at Dr. Mikovits behest the morning after her termination. According to Pfost’s affidavit, upon hearing of her termination Dr. Mikovits called him and told him that the WPI would ‘go down’. She then met him in a bar and provided him with the keys he needed to take ‘patient samples’, lab notebooks and other information.
Pfost attempted to gain entry to the WPI that night but was unable to and entered the building the next morning when it was unlocked. Pfost then removed between 12-20 heavy notebooks containing approximately five years of research work from Dr. Mikovits, Pfost and two other researchers. Unable to fit all the notebooks into his backpack Pfost carried others out in his arms to his car and then to his apartment where he hid them in a “Happy Birthday” bag. Realizing that the WPI was searching for them he then moved them to his mothers' house.
Dr. Mikovits requested that he mail them to her at her house but Pfost protested that the size and the weight of the notebooks made them too expensive to mail. After confessing to his mother that he had stolen the notebooks Pfost removed them from her house and returned them to his condominium.
Mikovits In Hiding – Shortly after meeting Dr. Mikovits early in the morning at the Reno airport Pfost handed over the notebooks and other materials to her. Dr. Mikovits informed Pfost that she was hiding out on a boat to avoid being served papers by the WPI and requested that he inform her of the whereabouts of WPI employees to avoid detection.
Attempted Removal of Biological Materials as Well – According to the affadavit Dr. Mikovits also attempted to have biological materials including cell lines and blood samples removed from the labs as well. At Dr. Mikovits behest Pfost attempted to recruit other WPI employees to remove these materials from the lab and send them to Dr. Ruscetti. According to the affidavit research assistant Amanda McKenzie, declined to do so.
The Stolen Materials – A WPI filing asserts that the WPI uses the stolen materials on a ‘daily basis’ and cannot proceed on critical areas of research without it.
WPI needs the Misappropriated Property to research effectively, continue ongoing experiments and studies, communicate with research subjects effectively, apply for patents, recruit researchers, and obtain grants to help find a cure for those patients suffering with NID.
Law Enforcement in Charge – A misunderstanding has arisen about the WPI’s role in Dr. Mikovits arrest. When the WPI realized important documents were missing they reported the theft of the materials to the police. At that point a police investigation was launched; based on the facts of that investigation and the lawsuit filed by the WPI, the Judge overseeing the case produced the initial restraining order stopping Dr. Mikovits from altering or destroying the documents or leaving the state of Nevada. Once Dr. Mikovits left the state of Nevada she was subject to arrest. On Nov 17th a warrant was issued for her arrest and she was arrested last Friday. Dr. Mikovits fate is now in the hands of the legal system. The police will determine whether or not to bring charges.
Felony Theft - When a person steals property, the market value of the property will dictate whether the theft is classified a felony. Under Nevada law, if the value of the stolen property exceeds $250, the crime is a felony. When the value exceeds $2,500, the crime becomes grand theft, punishable by one-to-five years in state prison and up to $10,000 in fines.
If Dr. Mikovits has the documents she certainly has good reason to return them. The WPI’s lawsuit, which was filed over a month ago, asked for legal fees, punitive damages and other damages.
Furthermore Dr. Mikovits has been charged with two felonies; avoiding justice and stealing property from the WPI. In the state of Nevada the market value of the product stolen determines how a theft is classified. Thefts above $250 are considered felonies; thefts above $2,500 are considered ‘grand theft’ and are punishable by 1-5 years in jail and up to $10,000 in fines. According to the affadivit the documents in question represent 5 years of work.
A hearing is scheduled today in Nevada at 1pm PST regarding the preliminary injunction which will expire after tonight.
This video is an introduction to methylation and how the methylation cycle is inhibited by various genetic mutations in patients with neuro-immune diseases like ME/CFS. There's some extra noise at the start, but it settles down. The ideas presented here form the basis for the Yasko protocol. It is 52 minutes long.
VIDEO: METHYLATION: WHY YOU SHOULD BE CONCERNED
It is 5 PM EDT: we have 22 hours to earn these ME/CFS non-profits some money! please vote and share this post via facebook or twitter. Thank you!
via Phoenix Rising Forums:
We started out with seven CFS non-profits in the running for $175,000 in the Chase Community Giving Contest. We knew the contest was going to get really volatile in the last couple of days and it has with four organizations dropping like rocks.
With only 22 hours left in the contest only three organization appear assured of taking home any money; the IACFS (AACFS), the CFSKnowledge Center and Mass CFIDS.
Rocky Mountain and Wisconsin have dropped precipitously and are now hanging on the skin of the teeth at positions 89 and 99. Even small drops now will kick them out. The fine New Jersey CFS Association which has done so much over the years is now off the leaderboard as is the exciting Foundation devoted to studying what may be a key culprit in CFS - enteroviruses.
We can turn this around. A similar situation happened last year with PANDORA and we managed to turn it around and get them in the winnings. Pandora then funded a researcher who ultimately was able to get millions of dollars in NIH grants.
This is worth taking your time to do.
We have 22 hours to do get these non-profits some money. If you haven't already, please vote and ask for your friends to vote for the following organizations at the following links.
IACFS/ME (AACFS) http://bit.ly/s48mcK CFSKnowledgeCenter - http://bit.ly/lkvWpU
Wisconsin CFIDS - http://bit.ly/mlmr0c
New Jersey CFS Association - http://bit.ly/tXpa46
Mass CFIDS Association - http://bit.ly/sJXeQ9
Enterovirus Foundation - http://bit.ly/lzhRfi
Connecticut CFIDS Foundation - http://bit.ly/uqIqF7
CFIDS and Fibromyalgia Self-Help Program - http://bit.ly/kfjQuZ
Chronic Fatigue Association of Georgia - http://bit.ly/kdavB3
To find out more on how to vote click here: http://forums.phoenixrising.me/content.php?499-Two-Weeks-for-250-000-(or-more)-for-ME-CFS-Supports-with-Chase-Community-Giving-(Nov-8th-22nd)
by Joe Garma*
November 16, 2011
Joe Garma is 'An Average Joe' who assiduously researches and blogs about the physical and psychological aspects of health at GarmaOnHealth.com*
Meditation delivers better health, emotional resiliency and brain power. All you have to do is… do it a bit each day. The science is clear - meditation builds a better you.
I’ve been meditating for years. Its value is obvious to me. And now with all the gadgets available to measure brain activity, scientists are learning just what’s going on.
My buddy, Steve, is a peripatetic searcher for knowledge, particularly self-knowledge. He has boundless energy, few preconceptions that he’s unwilling to challenge, punches through fears, and over the last few years has done what the cartoonist Stine made popular with his greeting cards - Steve is willing to “look in to find out.”
We’re talking live-in workshop retreats and various deep dive psychotherapies. And now, Steve has added meditation to the list. He recently learned Transcendental Meditation, and now sits daily and relaxes into the vibe.
“It’s making a difference,” Steve announced to me at our café hangout last weekend. I looked up from the section of Sunday’s New York Times that he gave me to give him an inquiring look.
I said nothing, but wondered how he could pinpoint the benefits of meditation given all the other modalities in which he’s immersed. He punctuated the pause with a smirk, and we both returned to our respective reads. It doesn’t matter that we didn’t dive into how meditation is affecting Steve, for we both know.
I’ve been an on and off meditator for 30 years. Its value is obvious to me. And now with all the gadgets available to measure brain activity, scientists are learning just what’s going on. Here are seven benefits of meditation…
Benefits of Meditation
1. A More Plastic Brain
This is a strange term, but it’s nearly literal because consistent meditation leads to what’s referred to as neuroplasticity.
Neuroplasticity is the brain’s ability to respond to certain inputs by changing itself structurally and functionally.
Now, there are even methods presented online that, studies show, can improve our brains, such as the games developed by Lumosity. [Lumos Labs (www.lumosity.com) is a developer of brain rehab & training exercises and games.]
That the brain is actually “plastic” - can change - is a big deal, as scientists formerly believed that the brain essentially stopped changing after adulthood.
2. A Thicker Brain
Get a thicker brain in just 40 minutes a day! A 2005 study of American men and women who meditated a mere 40 minutes a day showed that they had thicker cortical walls than non-meditators.
Thicker biceps, yes, but why would you want a thicker brain? Well, a thicker brain results in a brain that’s aging at a slower rate, better decision making, attention and memory.
Thick brains are better than thick biceps after all.
3. A More Alert Brain
In a 2006 study, college students were asked to either sleep, meditate or watch TV. They were then tested on their alertness by being asked to hit a button every time a light flashed on a screen. By a significant 10% ("a huge jump"), the meditators did better than the nappers and TV watchers.
4. A More Relaxed Brain
Do you have high blood pressure?
In 2008, Dr. Randy Zusman, a doctor at the Massachusetts General Hospital, asked patients suffering from high blood pressure, but not on medication, to try a meditation-based relaxation program for three months.
After meditating regularly for three months, 40 of the 60 patients showed significant drops in blood pressure levels. The reason? Relaxation results in the formation of nitric oxide which opens up your blood vessels.
5. A Longer-Lived Brain
Telomeres - the protective caps at the end of our chromosomes - are the new frontier of anti-aging science. (Watch Nobel prize winner Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn tell you about telomeres in “Three Months to Longer Life.”)
Having longer telomeres means that you’re likely to live longer.
Research done by the University of California, Davis-based Shamatha Project has shown that meditators have significantly higher telomerase activity that non-meditators.
Telomerase is the enzyme that helps build telomeres. When telomerase activity shifts into high gear, it can translate into stronger and longer telomeres .
6. A More Resilient Brain
Meaning, a better immune system.
A 2008 study on HIV positive patients found that, after an eight-week meditation course, patients who’d meditated showed no decline in lymphocyte content – by contrast with non-meditators, who showed significant reduction in lymphocytes.
Lymphocytes, or white blood cells, are the “brain” of the body’s immune system, and are particularly important for HIV positive people. The study also found that lymphocyte levels actually went up with each meditation session.
7. A Pain-Free Brain
Well, the brain itself doesn’t actually feel pain, but it does command how you feel it. Earlier this year, a study conducted by Wake Forest Baptist University found that meditation could reduce pain intensity by 40% and pain unpleasantness by 57%.
Pretty impressive given that morphine and other pain-relieving drugs typically show a pain reduction of only 25%.
* * * *
There’s some more information for each of these seven at the original article that inspired this summary, so if interested, go take a read here.
You Might Also Like
• “Four Ways to Build a Better Brain”
• "The 40 Best Age-Erasing Superfoods"
• “Three Months to Longer Life” (It’s All About Telomeres)
• “The Mind-Heart Connection: The Stress Response, and Techniques for Creating a Relaxation Response.”
• “Mindfulness Meditation Alleviates Depressive Symptoms in women with Fibromyalgia: Results of a randomized clinical trial” (“Depressive symptoms improved significantly.”
• “Meditation Can Indeed Reduce Pain Sensitivity – Actually ‘Beefs Up’ Parts of the Brain.”
* Joe Garma is 'An Average Joe' who assiduously researches and blogs about the physical and psychological aspects of health at GarmaOnHealth.com. His blog is the culmination of more than 20 years of insights gained in his own quest for ways to live a long and strong life. This article is reproduced here with his kind permission - © Joe Garma 2010-2011.
Note: This information has not been evaluated by the FDA. It is generic and is not meant to prevent, diagnose, treat or cure any disease.
At the IACFS/ME Biennial Conference in September and again during an October 27 conference call, Hemispherx Biopharma, Inc. presented new research data on a diagnostic blood test for chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) that they have developed with Chronix Biomedical, Inc.
The aim of the research was to find signature DNA sequences from patients with ME/CFS compared to healthy controls with respect to their diagnostic predictive value. The Chronix technology used for the study is able to analyze DNA released into the bloodstream by dying and damaged cells and has the potential to detect genomic alterations unique to diseased cells.
DNA extracted from serum samples of ME/CFS patients and normal healthy controls was sequenced and compared to the human genome. A total of about 10,000 high-quality sequence reads were generated from each serum sample.
Four genes were identified that separated ME/CFS patients from the normal control group.
These results support additional studies done with a larger CFS cohort using more powerful sequencing techniques.
In addition to the obvious benefits of being able to accurately diagnose and evaluate ME/CFS patients, Hemispherx is hoping this blood test will also help them identify the ME/CFS patients that will respond best to their experimental drug Ampligen®, for which they are seeking FDA approval.
The possibility of a blood test that could aid in the diagnosis and treatment of ME/CFS is terribly exciting. And the idea that Hemispherx wants to use this test to find the ME/CFS patients who would be most likely to have a positive response to Ampligen makes me think that it may have the potential to differentiate between possible subsets of ME/CFS.
Gene sequencing has been touted as the future of medicine since we entered the 21st century, but I think many of us are just now beginning to get a glimpse of its huge potential. Hopefully one day it can be used to get faster and more accurate diagnoses for ME/CFS, fibromyalgia and so many other chronic pain illnesses.
Hemispherx Biopharma Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Conference Call. October 27, 2011.
Hemispherx Biopharma, Inc. Press Release. September 26, 2011.