Monday, June 2, 2008

NIH's Role in Undiagnosed Illness

It is due time that the NIH took some interest toward the increasing presence of undiagnosed mystery illnesses, since it may in fact have had a direct role in causing it. The NIH has supported and allowed dangerous BL2 (Biosafety Level 2) research to be performed essentially unregulated here in the United States, a type of research, which in fact, can cause and contribute to the increase prevalence of mystery illness.

Uunregulated BL2 recombinant DNA research is currently being performed in every major academic, biomedical and pharmaceutical research facility in the United States. This dangerous biological research involves creating genetically engineered human infectious agents that can cause a plethora of new uncharacterized genetic and metabolic diseases in humans and animals. If used unsafely and subsequently released, it can leave exposed persons suffering a debilitating illness without adequate medical care or any hope of a diagnosis.

Hazardous BL2 research is now so common that, more than likely, it is being performed “directly in your own back yard” at your local research facility. Biomedical research should be of grave concern to the public since it remains essentially unregulated with no effective oversight to ensure worker or public health and safety.

The NIH has been far from responsible in taking strides to protect the American people against the dangers of recombinant DNA research. They have not supported effective oversight to enforce safety standards using BL2 infectious agents in academic laboratories. More threatening is that there exist no safety laws which govern private research centers working with BL2 infectious agents. Biotech workers have no rights to a safety forum to address safety issues.

Moreover, the NIH does not support the release of identity and exposure records in order for biotech workers to obtain proper medical care from an exposure. Accidents in the labs and biological releases are being hidden from the public. In fact, the culture of the scientific community has become so unprincipled that it supports “trade secret” rights over the rights and safety of the American people and health of biotech workers.

There is no doubt that a population of “undiagnosed” diseases, could have been caused by unsafe practices in BL2 research laboratories. The NIH by their own volition and lack of responsibility for worker’s rights and public health and safety has played a major role in supporting this dangerous unregulated research...all in the name to promote science.

It is about time the NIH pulled their "head out of the sand" and began looking into these mystery- undiagnosed illness which has left millions of people suffering. But that is only part of the solution. The NIH should not only investigate undiagnosed mystery illness, but also attempt to prevent the disease itself. It time to place adequate controls and oversight on BL2 research institutes around the country.


  1. Very interesting article.
    I have been suffering with an undiagnosed illness for some time, and there is no support for people like us.

    Undiagnosed Illness

  2. I work for a university where I am certain that people are doing research with recombinant DNA in laboratories that have not been approved or permitted for such work. Who can I contact to bring attention to this? I'm sure the university is aware of it, but doesn't want to put forth the resources that would be required to have a safety office qualified to inspect labs for such things. I only know of the Sunshine Project, which I found had disbanded in February this year.

  3. watchdogonscienceJune 26, 2008 at 3:12 PM

    Your question brings to light the essence of the problem. Biotech workers are now in a very vulnerable place since they have no legitimate whistleblower protections. There are no federal laws mandating specific biosafety regulations (only guidelines), and no effective oversight to ensure these guidelines, leaving biotech workers with no place to go and no where to get help.

    The scientific community has been irresponsible in addressing issues and advocating against retaliations for reporting safety issues. Also, illnesses which have occurred in biological laboratories are quietly hushed up and sent packing. The last thing the scientific community will admit is that dangerous recombinant technologies are being performed at your local university or friendly pharmaceutical company. They wouldn’t want to “panic the public”. So they just hide it or ignore it or deny it all the while promising the public miracle cures from “safe” advances in science. It truly is shameful.

    We are in desperate need for biotech worker forum so people can lodge their concerns. To make an impact to the public, however, you need numbers. One or two or three complaints, even if legitimate, will be dismissed. Unless, we can establish a safe forum, it most likely will take a disaster in the form of a biological release from one of these labs to call attention to this serious problem. But then, they just might play it off as a bioterrorism act instead of a home-grown problem. Or they might hide it again and just label it a new emerging disease that “naturally” just came about.

    One of the sites that you may want to look at is Wikileaks. Also look at my recent article entititled, “Danger in DNA Laboratories: Reporting Violations”.

    Good luck. If you need my help, you can email me at