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Article on Marshall Protocol in journal debate?

Discussion in 'General Treatment' started by Emma, Mar 16, 2011.

  1. Emma


    In January this article on the Marshall Protocol (co-written by T Marshall) was published in Cellular & Molecular Immunology, a publication within Nature Publishing Group:


    Full article:

    Has anybode (with access to the journal) seen if this has led to any following debate in Cellular & Molecular Immunology, or elsewhere? It would be interesting to see how the Marshall Protocol theory was received/reacted upon in the scientific community. Does the publication by a Nature Publishing Group journal mean that the theory is gaining positive attention, or was it a bone thrown out to get a debate started?

    Grateful for any views on this.
  2. pine108kell

    pine108kell Senior Member

    As I am not a biologist or doctor, so I am not familiar with this journal. I agree it would be interesting to know how it might be received in the science community. My guess is that it will not be well received--partly because many have entrenched ideas and largely because it appears to me that this is still mostly hypothetical. Just presenting a handful of case studies does not make a strong case.

    They argue that typical studies are almost impossible because of the unpleasant immune responses and the long length of therapy. That may be true, but there still needs to be more compelling research and studies. All the people with "CFS" in the case studies had other diagnoses, including depression--I wonder if any really had CFS?

    It is interesting that there is no mention of the extreme sunlight avoidance that Marshall always insisted on. To me, that is maybe the most limiting factor of following the original protocol.

    My personal opinion is that I have always thought that there was some validity in some of Marshall's ideas, and those are worthy of debate. It is the total scheme that is probably flawed. In my view, he may have some pieces that make sense for some "autoimmune" diseases but no where near the whole story.
    Wayne likes this.
  3. jono_aus


    That appears to be a Chinese based journal (even though it is published by the Nature Group). It is apparently published by the "Chinese Society of Immunology" and this should be fairly telling:

    "Received 14 December 2010; Accepted 15 December 2010; Published online 31 January 2011. "

    1 day to go through Peer Review? Clearly it was a token review. The article itself presents nothing new to anyone who is familiar with the Marshall protocol.
  4. blacksnake


    Melbourne Australia
    I agree with you that something will come of this.

    I find the antipathy of many in the chronically ill communities towards Marshall very interesting. He is the only person promoting a biomedical hypothesis that gets the sort of hatred normally reserved for the UK psych's. I think this is wrong. Regardless of whether the approach is medically right or wrong it is a serious attempt on the biomedical side - which classifies him as an ally as far as I'm concerned.

    What is interesting is that normally considered and rational posters gives way to an almost religious, bigoted view when discussing MP. Much of this centres around a holy view of Vitamin D. I don't know how many times I've seen posts like "but chronically ill patients are low on Vitamin D so Marshall must be the devil". Then to complete the heresy trial "he is not a doctor. And I think I've seen his horms and pitchfork". Unwarranted all out attacks like the post by Jodie Bassett ( are out of character and miss what is not even a question about science, just about basic logic.

    You only need to spend 3 minutes reading the Marshall stuff with an open mind to know that the whole premise of his approach is that "chronically ill patients are low on Vitamin D, something is going on". The many, many studies showing low Vitamin D in chronically ill are consistent with both the Marshall view and the alternate medicine view of "quick, take supplements". There are plenty of reasons you may object to MP. But "many illnesses show low Vitamin D" is not one of them.

    Four years ago I took a day and a half to read all the scientific papers referred to in his material. It was heavy going. All I can say is the ideas are plausible, even if viewed as unlikely by many.

    My son tried the treatment, which did not work as well as expected for him. But I have to say this. When I first started researching my son's illness I ended up in long email conversations with many people - as most of us do. Most of these are still around and still sick. Two that "disappeared" long ago from my circle of contacts did so because of MP. They got, not just better but back to life and work. And within about 6 months. It seems to work for some, although both these had overt arthritis like inflammation.

    So, I am not convinced but have an open mind. The other factors make me treat the work with a bit more cautious respect than the average new idea are:-
    - the molecular simulation work on the Vitamin D receptor. Good work. Too many drugs are out there with a lot of clinical trial and not much fundamental science like this. Taken in isolation, the Benicar effect on VDR can't be argued with. What the significance is, can of course be debated to one's heart content.
    - He is a researcher not a doctor - big plus

    From my reading of the literature those years ago I have taken away a cautious respect for Vit D. Immune cells in granulomas and some cancers do indeed *make* Vitamin D. No one (in mainstream science) is sure whether that is part of the body's strategy or the pathogen's strategy. So, it doesn't prove anything. Except that Vitamin D is not just a raw material for the body like Vitamin C or B. Also interesting is the studies showing disappointing results supplementing Vit D - despite the clear correlation of low D with many illnesses. Even paradoxical effects - like high dose Vitamin D *increasing* fractures in elderly women. A fact which some mainstream medical adminstrators have picked up on when they warn that there is not enough evidence to supplement heavily with D.(

    Clearly Vit D is a very complex body hormone. Something good will come of all this interest in it. I'm waiting to see.

    Peter Wachtel
    Melbourne Australia
    Wayne likes this.
  5. WillowJ

    WillowJ คภภเє ɠรค๓թєl

    WA, USA
    This is my view as well, only I would say the total scheme is "undoubtedly" flawed (not "probably flawed").
  6. dannybex

    dannybex Senior Member

    I know five people (out of five) who tried the protocol in 2004, and all had to discontinue because of serious "side" effects. One almost died, as her kidneys nearly failed.

    Many, many more have suffered serious, negative results as well: (check out the comments, some even from his past volunteers)


    Blacksnake said:

    "You only need to spend 3 minutes reading the Marshall stuff with an open mind to know that the whole premise of his approach is that "chronically ill patients are low on Vitamin D, something is going on"."

    Yes, they typically spend their entire day indoors, so they (we) don't get enough vitamin D. Common sense, but Marshall has it backwards IMHO.


  7. garcia

    garcia Aristocrat Extraordinaire

    I agree with Pine, Willow & Danny. I think the MP has some interesting ideas, but the protocol as a whole can be potentially dangerous. Benicar/Olmesartan is a great drug to calm inflammation and activate the immune system. Unfortunately I can't tolerate it. Just makes me crash. I am sure I would get serious (possibly irreversible) side effects if I carried on taking it for any length of time, just like many others have.
  8. Lala

    Lala Senior Member

    What bothers me most with MP is that it uses subclinical doses of antibiotics intermittently and this is exactly how resistance was proved to build up in laboratories for decades. For those of us, that found out our cause of CFS was bacterial it is not only flawed, but very dangerous. Even if there would be something interesting about Benicar idea or vitamin d deficiency reasons, this really bad atb schedule is overwhelming everything. Moreover they rotate all main classes of antibiotics. Frankly I really do not understand those with lyme, mycoplasma, bartonella etc. trying to treat themselves with MP as not only they do not treat these infections but support them. There is nothing interesting on antipathy to MP as it is just pure logic.
  9. WillowJ

    WillowJ คภภเє ɠรค๓թєl

    WA, USA
    see I don't know anything about dosages... I just thought the idea of persistent infections and having some kind of long-term treatment designed to root them out, even if they were spore-forming or whatever, was good. that's all. I don't know enough about treatments to know whether MP could do that or not.

    I do know that Vit D has a balancing/buffering effect on the immune system and either too little or too much can be harmful, and I think the MP is wrong in that it sees Vit D as bad. We can actually test both D2 and D3 (rather than simply assuming D3 is high), and in my case D3 was also very low (and I think this would be more standard; although I'm sure it's possible for D3 to be high when D2 is low, I would expect that to be unusual... but again we can test for this rather than assuming).

    Supplementing with D2 doesn't necessarily help, but supplementing with D3 was a help to me.

    I also know the idea that the colon should be sterile is pure folly.

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