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FG Dismisses Claims by Nigeria Professor Who ‘Found Cure’ for HIV/AIDS

9 February 2017 World

The federal government of Nigeria has dismissed claims by a Nigerian professor that a cure for AIDS had been found.

The Federal Government through the National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA) and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has dismissed the claims by a Professor of Veterinary Medicine and Clinical Virology at the Michael Okpara University of Agriculture Umudike, Abia State, Maduike Ezeibe, to have discovered a new drug for the cure of Human Immuno-deficiency Virus (HIV)/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS).

An editorial in a Nigerian newspaper, not The Guardian, had quoted the professor as saying that the drug, produced with “Aluminum Magnesium Silicate” was tested on ten persons living with HIV. The newspaper reported a clinical outcome of an ability to “reach all cells” and making HIV “a conquered organism.”

However, Director-General, NACA, Dr. Sani Aliyu, and Chief Executive Officer NCDC, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, in a joint statement yesterday said there was no evidence from the publication that the authors obtained ethical clearance from an appropriate body in Nigeria to conduct this study, and only ambiguous evidence that informed consent was sought from vulnerable patients.

They said there is really no basis for a claim to the cure of AIDS in this study and are concerned that the publicity given to this claims will stop patients with HIV from taking life-saving anti-retroviral drugs (ARVs) and give them false hope of a cure.

The statement noted: “It will be a great disservice to this vulnerable group of patients for the media to disseminate this claims in the absence of sound scientific evidence. There are long established, tried and tested routes for the discovery, development and validation of modern medicines before they can be registered and used for treatment in humans and animals.”

NACA and NCDC called on all academics to follow legal and scientifically acceptable methods in conducting their research and to avoid making premature claims capable of derailing the huge progress made in the last two decades on the war against HIV/AIDS.

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