The fact that even chimpanzees do not develop AIDS when infected with HIV, casts serious doubt on the validity of animal experiments.(1) Some AIDS researchers seem to recognise this since vaccines which failed to protect chimpanzees from infection with HIV, were nevertheless tested in human trials!(2) Certainly, faith in animal tests could have serious repercussions. For instance, failure to induce AIDS in laboratory animals has been used to support arguments against HIV as the cause.(3)
Attempts to produce "animal models" of AIDS could be dangerous in other ways. By inserting parts of the human immune system into mice, scientists believed they had developed an animal model of AIDS. But fears have been expressed that interaction of HIV with viruses commonly found in mice may not only make the "model" irrelevant to people but promote hazardous changes in the AIDS virus. The new HIV variants could then spread in different ways, possibly even through the air. (4)
1) P.Newmark, Nature, 1989, October 19, 566-567.
2) A.S.Fauci & P.J.Fischinger, Public Health Reports, 1988, vo1.103, 230-236.
3) New Scientist, 1988, March 3, 34.
4) J.Marx, Science, 1990, February 16, 809; P.Lusso et al, Science, 1990, February 16, 848-852
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