U.S. Universities and Big Pharma Conduct Illegal Human Experiments in Africa

People’s Constitution
November 9, 2011

A new policy brief faults prominent institutions and drug companies like Pfizer, Columbia University, Johns Hopkins University, and Population Council, for their involvement in unethical and illegal human experimentation in Africa.

The report is titled “Non-Consensual Research in Africa: The Outsourcing of Tuskegee” in reference to the illegal human experiment conducted in Tuskegee, Alabama, between 1932 and 1972 by the US Public Health Service. In that experiment, some 600 impoverished African-American men were observed in a study on the progression of untreated syphilis. Some of the men were intentionally infected with the disease and all of them were denied the cure. Regrettably, the report notes, no one was held accountable for this crime against humanity.

The new report details human experiments led by US researchers and drug companies on Africans who are typically undereducated, poor, and lack full understanding of their rights. The human subjects often are led to believe that they are receiving medical treatment from governmental health services or health ministries.

These practices hearken back to the appalling experiments carried out by US researchers in Guatemala in the 1940s where hundreds of Guatemalans were deliberately infected with sexually transmitted diseases without information or consent. President Obama formally apologized to Guatemala for these experiments last year.

Human experimentation in the United States is regulated by the Office of Research Integrity and various Ethical Research Institutional Boards. Many African countries lack these institutions. Even when they exist, they lack independence and are controlled by corrupt government officials.

In one experiment on HIV sponsored by Gilead Sciences, the Centers for Disease Control, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and operated by Family Health International, Cameroonian subjects were given details about the experiment in English even though many spoke only French and were illiterate. Five women were allegedly infected with HIV in the experiment but were not given antiretroviral drugs.

In another experiment in Nigeria led by Pfizer physicians, researchers injected children with an antibiotic called Trovan during a meningitis outbreak without providing their families with informed consent forms that fully disclose the side effects and purpose of the experiment. Eleven children died and many were left paralyzed.

In South Africa and Namibia, mothers with HIV/AIDS are routinely sterilized without their informed consent. Countries that perform these procedures are known to receive funding in the form of grants and incentives from USAID and other aid organizations.

The report explains that US researchers and drug companies violate the laws and protocols of the Declaration at Helsinki (1964) and the Belmont Report which provide ethical guidelines on human experimentation.

Moreover, the results of unethical and fraudulent experiments are laundered in the United States and Europe through the peer-review system. Many of the “peers” who review these experiments are themselves involved in the same unethical conduct. Others are concerned about the possibility of professional alienation if they speak out.

The authors make several demands so that these practices are ended. They include holding congressional hearings so that the matter is brought to the public’s attention and enacting new legislation to ensure that drugs are not approved by the FDA unless the research on which they are based comply with ethical research principles.

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4 Responses to U.S. Universities and Big Pharma Conduct Illegal Human Experiments in Africa

  1. Madeleine Tector says:

    I have to wonder where the UN is on this, aren’t they the watchdog for human rights?
    We here in the states are feeling some changes in the world of medicine, and its not good. When you have a former monsanto CEO now the head of the FDA it is unlikely anyone will get any help from them. These drug companies should be fined within an inch of their lives, they have total disregard for human beings and experiment on people here in America as well, they are always trying ourt things and then recalling them if they are no good, they should do that before they give you drugs. They just can’t make the money fast enough. If you want to take care of yourself with natural products you are out of luck, they have stopped most of them, watered down the vitamins as well, its not easy to keep yourslef healthy these days and the Africans are becomning a part of the depopulation program again, dont’ they have anyone to oversee what happens ot them there? Some watchdog group?

    • News Desk says:

      The UN has never stood up for human rights. If it had, none of the wars that have happened would have happened. The UN is a supranational organization full of politicians no one wants in their respective countries, so they are sent to the UN to do the globalists´ due dilligence.

    • Brien Rice says:

      The tragic tendency of humans to diminish others in subtle ways is a powerful weapon we us to open the floodgates justification! Though not always so subtle it’s the insidious subtle othering that allows us to do the real bad things that we justify because we are doing it on people that are somehow compromised ore diminished in some way. This is a lack of understanding on the part of the aggressor with a hypodermic, gun or policy that heavily relies on rationalizing in order to justify greed or status!

      Real ethical reform starts with an understanding of this mechanism of rationalizing ones actions as an end to a means. xenophobia is a primitive instinct that is easy overcome, all we have to do is recognize our subtle urge to participate and not give in to its primal tools of fear and greed.

  2. Norman says:

    Seems as though the Drug Processors & the Universities they sponsor, are running out of Guinea Pigs! Oh, sorry, test subjects. After all, what’s a few more bodies? What say you? Food for thought.

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