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Daily Beast: Interview with Mikovits who tells her side of events...

Discussion in 'Media, Interviews, Blogs, Talks, Events about XMRV' started by Firestormm, Jul 23, 2012.

  1. RRM

    RRM

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    Yes, but like I said, perhaps they don't know when the XMRV culture was misplaced. It's possible, based on the wording in his article that (for instance) the XMRV culture was immediately misplaced after they had received it from I presume Silverman, which would have happened in late 2007. When someone used it for an experiment in March of 2009, it was noted down from which ice chest it was taken, which turned out to be the chest containing patient samples.

    I am not saying that this definitely happened - I am just saying that dismissing this information as irrelevant to the Lombardi study seems premature to me.
    barbc56 likes this.
  2. Esther12

    Esther12 Senior Member

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    To me, this reads like an attempt at a plausible narrative that would explain the Lipkin results being negative without Mikovits looking too bad. I don't think it's worth getting too hung up on the specifics of unconfirmed details - we've had other bits and pieces come out through the media which have not gone on to be confirmed.

    The broad sweep of this seems to be: Others made errors which could explain false positives in the science paper. The whole fugitive from justice thing was just a hilarious collection of coincidences and mistakes, and Mikovit's trouble is that she's just too darn trusting.

    I can't say that any of it's false but, to be honest about my own assumptions, I'd be surprised if it was ever all shown to be true.
    barbc56, TessDeco and Firestormm like this.
  3. Mark

    Mark Acting CEO

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    Good questions, and nice spot on Casey Schwartz' education background in psychodynamic neuroscience, thanks for that. That will certainly raise some questions about the motivations behind this article in many minds. The apparent admission of the discovery of a potential contamination source by Dr Mikovits in this interview does seem odd, and I think we should be cautious about assuming too much based on this quote: it begs a lot of questions which only Dr Mikovits could answer, and we can't reason forward from this reliably without those answers.

    Your inference of a connection with "Wessely's stomping ground" is incorrect though (a quite understandable mistake): Wessely's institutional connections include Kings College London, University College Oxford, and the University of London: as far as I know he has no (explicit) connection with University College London (UCL) which is a separate institution. Not to be confused...

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/King's_College_London_and_UCL_rivalry
  4. ukxmrv

    ukxmrv Senior Member

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    Simon Wessely was at the National Hospital for Neurology though. I've been seen at that Hospital and can confirm that it is not a safe place for a PWME. It is part of the UCL. No idea if the attitudes I encountered there were due to any influence he had/has though.

    Snip from his piece on fatigue in the JNNP

    In 1987 I was a senior registrar on the Maudsley psychiatry training scheme when I was moved at short notice up to the National Hospital for Neurology, London, because the current SpR, Ray Dolan, had just been promoted to consultant. I soon expressed an interest in seeing one group of patients who were always getting referred to the liaison service, and frankly were not popular with many of the neurologists who ran the place. It wasn't the fault of the patients—they had symptoms that might have had a neurological explanation. But when the neurologists drew a blank, the patients soon got the message, whether rightly or wrongly, that the neurologists thought that they were at best suffering from depression, at worst making it all up, either of which appeared to be confirmed when the next port of call was myself. I still treasure the briefest but still most unintentionally revealing referral letter I have ever received—“Dear Simon, Please see this patient. There is nothing wrong with her”.
  5. Firestormm

    Firestormm Guest

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    Err... methinks worrying about the interviewer is rather like losing the plot chaps. Who cares what/who she is? It's what's in the article that matters. Anyhoo I'm not going to repeat all that was said yesterday again this morrow for comments can be read here should anyone wish to peruse: http://www.mecfsforums.com/index.php/topic,12892.0.html

    Or here: http://peoplewithme.com/thread-1377-page-3.html ;)

    Or there's always the comments beneath the article.

    I shall await the Newsweek article/interview/confirmation/whatever. Still think Cohen/that chap David (can't remember his surname sorry) should be doing any interviewing. Get some specific details.
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Senior Member

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    Never let the facts get between you and your preconceived bias :)
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  7. Bob

    Bob

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    If you knew Esther very well, then I think you'd know that Esther is not very partial to preconceived bias, but likes to explore all angles of an issue. (Well, at least, that's my perception of Esther.)
    And as for 'facts', what 'facts'? There aren't any darn facts. That's the problem!
    There's just questions, more questions, even more questions, speculation, corrections, late admissions of contamination, negative studies, and not much else apart from a lot of stray MLV sequences floating around all over the place.
    And very soon, we'll have the results of the Lipkin study, which may very well provide us with some answers, but maybe not the ones we have been looking for.
    currer and Sam Carter like this.
  8. Esther12

    Esther12 Senior Member

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    Yeah... I'm awesome (I think that's what Bob was saying)! Ta Bob.
    This is a problem. We're all rather in the dark here, but I expect all us us are still making assumptions and trying to work out what is most likely to be true.

    I doubt that we're ever going to really know what happened.

    re the reporter's biases - to me the article read like this was Mikovit's side of the story, presented as she wanted. Again, I don't know, but I would guess that it was an attempt by her to pre-empt negative results from Lipkin, and any negative coverage of her this could lead to.
    barbc56 and Bob like this.
  9. Forebearance

    Forebearance Senior Member

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    I find it shocking that XMRV could jump from a culture dish to vials of blood in a freezer!
    Nielk and beaker like this.
  10. barbc56

    barbc56 Senior Member

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    That's what's so tricky about contamination. Remember Singh and how long it took her to finally track down what was causing the contamination in her study?
  11. Rrrr

    Rrrr Senior Member

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    below i'm quoting from the article:

    "In the summer of 2011, Mikovits and her young lab assistant, Max Pfost, began poring through their notebooks, trying to find where such a contaminant might have entered their process.

    In July, she says, she found it—an entry from March 2009 indicating that a culture of the XMRV virus had been placed into the same ice chest with the rest of the lab’s blood samples. Mikovits says she was out of town the day this occurred.

    In July 2011 she told Harvey Whittemore of the potential contamination, she says, and expected that the VIP Dx lab would cease testing patients for the XMRV virus. “I just kept saying, stop it, stop it, stop it. We have to sort this out,” Mikovits says. According to Mikovits, the testing did not stop. And after a tense summer, she was fired in September."
    ____

    MY NOTE: so it was in JULY 2011 that she found any possible source of contamination. and once she found it, she immediately told WPI to stop the xmrv test.

    - rrrr
  12. Rrrr

    Rrrr Senior Member

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    she did not determine that there was contamination. she determined that there was POSSIBLE contamination. and she immediately told her boss (the whittemores), which was the appropriate people to tell.
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  13. Firestormm

    Firestormm Guest

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    She told Harvey Whittemore - whether or not he was the most appropriate person to tell is yet another moot point - but I have to say I think mentioning his name in the context of the charges placed against him is a further attempt (along with Mikovits being out of town at the time of the entry in her diary) to cast her in a better light and blame it on him....
    barbc56 likes this.
  14. Nielk

    Nielk

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    I agree with Forebearance. How exactly do closed, sealed vials of blood get contaminated in a freezer by a sealed culture dish containing XMRV?
  15. Bob

    Bob

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    Contamination can get onto packaging because of handling.
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  16. Nielk

    Nielk

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    I don't know how these things work but, I would think that if vials of blood are not "safe" when contained in a freezer that
    all of our bloodwork at any lab could be compromised.
  17. Bob

    Bob

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    Yes, containing contamination is a major issue. If you read about the lengths that Silverman goes to, in his lab, to avoid contamination, they are extraordinary. I think that Mikovits has mentioned in the past that is is possible for patient samples to contaminate other patient samples, quite easily with MLVs (even if not in direct contact), and so extra precautions are needed. But if contamination is carefully controlled, then it doesn't need to be a problem. It's all about methodology.
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  18. Nielk

    Nielk

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    I did not know that.
  19. Bob

    Bob

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    Silverman wrote a piece about his anti-contamination precautions in his lab. It's on the internet somewhere. I can't remember the details now, but he uses different rooms for different parts of experimentation, and each room is partially sealed. And loads of other precautions. It's an interesting read, if you can find it. I've had a look, but I can't find it.
  20. Sam Carter

    Sam Carter Guest

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    Supporting Online Material for Partial Retraction to “Detection of an Infectious Retrovirus, XMRV, in
    Blood Cells of Patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome”



    ...

    Materials and Methods

    In early 2009 we received PBMC DNA samples from CFS patients and healthy controls from the Whittemore Peterson Institute (WPI), Reno, Nevada. The PBMC DNA samples were taken directly to a clean room upon arrival and stored in a -20oC freezer in the same room. Precautions were taken to minimize the possibility of crosscontamination of the human samples with laboratory sources of XMRV DNA. In particular, neither plasmid XMRV VP62/pcDNA3.1(-) nor XMRV PCR products were ever taken into the clean room. Also, new pipetmans (Gilson) were purchased for exclusive use in the clean room and were never used elsewhere. At the entrance to the clean
    room there is a sticky pad on the floor and lab personnel must change lab coats upon entering and exiting the clean room. The clean room is locked when not in use. The PCR reaction mixtures that contained PBMC DNA were pipetted in an AirClean 600 PCR Work Station (ISC Bio Express) in the clean room. The PCR Work Station was purchased for use in the clean room and never used elsewhere. The single-round PCR on human DNA samples was performed in a BioRad PCR thermocycler, used exclusively for that purpose, in a separate room from the clean room. The PCR on the plasmid XMRV VP62/pcDNA3.1(-) was performed in yet another room in a different PCR
    thermocycler from the one used on patient DNA samples.

    ...
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