In the USA, the total cases of AIDS in adults was 573,800 as of January 1, 1997 and about 90% of these cases were male homosexuals and heterosexuals and homosexual drug users (Fauci, et al., 1998). The appearance of AIDS in the USA and Europe in drug users and homosexuals in the late 1970's and early 1980's coincided with the synergistic actions of several events. Briefly, these include the spread of illicit drug use, especially smoking crack cocaine and heroin in 1970's, the approval of glucocorticoids aerosol by the US FDA in 1976, the wide use of the glucocorticoid inhalers to treat chronic respiratory illnesses resulting from inhaling cocaine and heroin, the wide use of alkyl nitrites by homosexuals to facilitate anal sex in 1970's, and the wide use of corticosteroids to treat chronic gastrointestinal tract illness in homosexuals. Furthermore, the approval of anti-viral drugs (AZT and protease inhibitors) and the steroids by the U.S. FDA to treat patients with AIDS and asymptomatic patients infected with HIV has exacerbated the problem (Al-Bayati, 1999).
The HIV-hypothesis states that HIV cause AIDS by killing the CD4+ T cells directly or indirectly (Fauci, et al., 1998). It appears that there is no scientific evidence to show that HIV can kill infected T4 cells (CD4+ T cells) in vitro or in vivo. In addition, the abnormalities in the immune system of patients with AIDS are not restricted to the reduction of T4 cells as predicted by the HIV-hypothesis. Hoxie et al. (1985) observed no evidence of death in T cells infected with HIV in tissue culture. These cells continued to produce virus particles for more than four months after inoculation with the virus. Many reports describe the changes in the lymph nodes of patients infected with HIV and these changes range from extensive cellular hyperplasia of T and B lymphocytes and the supporting stroma to severe atrophy of the glands. Changes in the lymph nodes of 505 HIV infected patients who were asymptomatic or had AIDS demonstrate three distinct stages. These are hyperplasia (245 patients), atrophy (117 patients), and mixed stage (172 patients) (Al-Bayati, 1999). The presence of hyperplasia in the infected lymph nodes contradicts the HIV-hypothesis which states HIV destroys infected T cells (Gallo, 1987; Fauci et al., 1998) .
Further elucidation is provided by the proponents of the HIV-hypothesis. Muro-Cacho, Pantaleo, and, Fauci (1995) examined 29 HIV+ lymph nodes and found twelve of these lymph nodes with follicular hyperplasia and extensive germinal centers, five with follicular hyperplasia mixed with follicular involution, twelve lymph nodes with a mixture of follicular involution and lymphocyte depletion, and five lymph nodes with lymphocyte depletion. They stated that "apoptosis was not restricted only to CD4+ T cells; both B cells and CD8+ T cells were found to undergo apoptosis. Taken together, these results indicate that the increased intensity of the apoptotic phenomenon in HIV infection is caused by the general state of immune activation, and is independent of the progression of HIV activities and the levels of viral load". HIV provirus was also found in CD4+ T cells, CD8+ T cells, and B cells lymphocytes in the lymph nodes of HIV infected patients and its ability to infect cells is not restricted to cells that have CD4 receptor as predicted by the HIV-hypothesis (Al-Bayati, 1999).
The changes in the lymph nodes described above are not unique to HIV infected individuals but also were described in HIV-negative patients in risk groups. The lymph nodes from 215 HIV-negative homosexual and drug-user men showed hyperplasia and atrophy and 15 lymph nodes showed Kaposi's sarcoma and lymphoma. These changes are AIDS-indicator diseases based on the CDC's criteria, yet the subjects were HIV-negative (Al-Bayati, 1999).
In addition to the information presented above that demonstrate the invalidity of the HIV-hypothesis, the rate of T cells infection by HIV, and the rate of the thymus and the lymphoid tissue regeneration also conflict with the HIV-hypothesis.
Duesberg, (1992a) stated that HIV infects on the average only 0.1% (1 out of 500 to 3000) of T-cells in AIDS patients, and at least 3% of all T-cells are regenerated during the two days it takes a retrovirus to infect a cell. HIV could never kill enough T cells to cause immunodeficiency. Thus, even if HIV killed every infected T cell, it could deplete T cells only at 1/30 of their normal rate of regeneration, not considering activated regeneration. Gallo agreed with Duesberg that 1 in 10000 T cells are infected with HIV (Booth, 1988). Baltimore and Feinberg, 1989 also stated that in the late stage of AIDS disease, HIV infects 1 in 100 CD4+ T cells or 1 in 400 mononuclear cells. Furthermore, the study of Al-Bayati et al. (1990) also showed that the rate of regeneration in the damaged thymus and lymphoid tissue of mice treated with a lymphotoxic agent (vanadate) is very rapid. In this study, a total of 120 mice were treated with metavanadate solution (15.5 mg/kg). Severe necrosis in the thymus of treated mice were observed at 2 days following treatment and the thymus healed completely in about 10 days.
In addition to illicit drug and alcohol abuse, homosexuals are also heavy users of alkyl nitrites that relax the anal muscle and facilitate anal sex. It has been stated that the use of alkyl nitrites permeated the gay life by 1977 (Al-Bayati, 1999). Some of the studies cited by Duesberg, (1992a and 1992b) clearly showed the heavy use of alkyl nitrites and illicit drugs by homosexuals. These are: 1) 86.4% of 420 homosexual men attending clinics for sexually transmitted diseases in New York, Atlanta and San Francisco reported that they frequently used amyl-and butyl nitrites as sexual stimulants and the frequency of nitrite use was proportional to the number of sexual partners; 2) a total of 170 male homosexuals from sexual disease clinics, including 50 with KS and pneumonia, and 120 without AIDS were surveyed showing 50-60% had used cocaine, 50-70% amphetamines, 40% marijuana, 10% heroin, over 50% had also used prescription drugs, about 80% had past or current gonorrhea, 40-70% had syphilis, 15% mononucleosis, 50% hepatitis, and 30% parasitic diarrhea; 3) A study of a group of 359 homosexual men in San Francisco reported in 1987 that 84% had used cocaine, 82% alkyl nitrites, 64% amphetamines, 51% methaqualone and 41% barbiturates; 4) a total of 3916 self-identified American homosexual men were surveyed, among which 83% had used one, and about 60% of them used two or more drugs with sexual activities during the previous six months (similar drug use has been reported from European homosexuals at risk); and 6) survey of homosexual men from Boston, conducted between 1985 and 1988, documented that among 206 HIV-positives, 92% had used nitrite inhalants, 73% cocaine, 39% amphetamines, 29% lysergic acid in addition to six other psychoactive drugs as sexual stimulants.
Homosexuals usually suffer from acute and chronic rectal and gastrointestinal diseases that dictate the heavy therapeutic use of rectal steroids. Among 7 selected studies that included 736 patients (97% of them were homosexual or bisexual men) who were infected with HIV and/or had AIDS. They show clearly that homosexual men suffer from extensive rectal and gastrointestinal problems that result in chronic use of therapeutic rectal steroids (Al-Bayati, 1999).
Review of the medical literature revealed that the short and the long term use of glucocorticoids at therapeutic doses, resulted in a variety of effects on the immune system that range from a transient reduction in T cells count in peripheral blood to the development of full blown AIDS. Fauci, (1975) and Fauci et al., (1976) described in detail the effects of corticosteroids on the immune system. These effects resemble the immune abnormalities that are found in patients suffering from AIDS or Idiopathic CD4 T cells lymphocytopnea (ICL) which are also described by Fauci et al.,1998. For example, Fauci et al., 1976 stated that "we have reviewed many aspects of the host defenses that are altered by corticosteroids, and the combined effects of these changes must be considered in trying to understand the relation between corticosteroids and infections. Since the defect with corticosteroids is broad, it is not surprising that many types of infections seem to occur more often in patients treated with corticosteroids. Of the bacterial infections, staphylococcal and Gram-negative infections, as well as tuberculosis and Listeria infections, probably occur most often. Certain types of viral, fungal, and parasitic infections also occur often. Patients with lupus erythematous, rheumatoid arthritis, and renal transplant have more infection with steroid administration. Studies of bronchial aerosols showed that with higher doses of steroid in the aerosol,Candida infections of the larynx and pharynx occurred more often".
In addition, Kaposi's sarcoma (KS) can develop in patients chronically treated with glucocorticoids independently of HIV. For example, KS developed eight months after initiation of prednisone treatment (40 mg per day for three months) in a 58-year-old man with systemic rheumatoid disease. He also had lymphocytopenia (896/µL), reduction of T4 cells (215/µL ), and T4/ T8 ratio of 0.7. This man was HIV-negative as tested by western blot (Schottstaedt et al., 1987). In addition, there are many cases who developed KS following treatment with glucocorticoids. They had reversal of their lesions after the termination of the treatment (Al-Bayati, 1999).
Furthermore, review of the medical literature revealed that the majority of AIDS patients suffer from metabolic and endocrine abnormalities. Changes were observed in the adrenal gland function of 182 AIDS patients (Al-Bayati, 1999). The high prevalence of adrenal insufficiency among AIDS patients provides very strong evidence that AIDS in these patients is caused by the use of corticosteroids. Fauci et al., (1998) stated that endocrine and metabolic abnormalities are frequently seen in HIV-infected individuals and most HIV-infected individuals studied at autopsy had involvement of adrenal glands. The most common abnormality seen in HIV infected individuals is hyponatremia, seen in up to 30 percents of patients. They also stated that the presence of a low sodium level combined with a high serum potassium level in a patient should alert one to the possibility of adrenal insufficiency and adrenocortical insufficiency as seen following prolonged administration of excess glucocorticoids. However; the use of corticosteroids by AIDS patients was not considered by Fauci and his colleagues.
Furthermore, as stated above, that the CD4+ T cells depletion in the peripheral blood of HIV -positive homosexual men was reversed after the termination of their treatment with glucocorticoids and at least 77% of 2,349 patients participated in the four major AZT clinical trials (1987-1992) were HIV-negative prior to their treatment with AZT. These studies demonstrate clearly that HIV is not the cause of AIDS (Al-Bayati, 1999).
Some studies show increases in CD4+ T cells in HIV-positive individual after treatment with the antiviral drugs (Al-Bayati, 1999). This information was interpreted as a good response to the medications. On the contrary, the elevation of T cells is not a good response in these conditions, but rather, it indicates severe tissue damage and infection. This explains the death of the patients following treatment with these drugs. For example, the CD4+ T cells were also increased following the treatment of HIV negative nurses with AZT who took AZT as a prophylactic. They developed severe symptoms following 3 weeks of treatment with AZT (Al-Bayati, 1999). In addition to the failure of the antiviral drugs, AIDS patients suffering from immune deficiency are treated with glucocorticoids (Fauci et al., 1998). This practice is not supported by any known biomedical mechanism of action.