See How They Lie, See How They Lie

By Dean Burk, National Cancer Institute Research, Retired

Dr. Schmidt, FDA Commissioner, as cited on about March 25, 1974…"Every study to date has not found any evidence of efficacy" with laetrile, and "if there was one shred of evidence from animal or cell systems I would issue an IND" (Investigational New Drug status that approves clinical testing in humans).

Mr. Robert Wetherell, Acting Director, Office of Legislative Services, FDA, "No evidence of antitumour activity has been found in any of the tests" with Laetrile, in current issued status report.

Dr. Frank Rauscher, Director, NCI, "I would certainly not turn off Laetrile if it had an iota of activity that we could pinpoint. Unfortunately, there is no evidence at all," stated on March 312, 1974 on the Mike Wallace 60 Minutes CBS Show.

Dr. Robert Hadsell, Officer of Cancer Communications, NCI, "All testing by NCI has found no evidence of activity against cancer" by laetrile, in letters sent throughout the US and abroad.

Dr. Jesse Steinfeld, former Surgeon General of the USHS, Laetrile "has repeatedly been tested in animal tumour systems at the NCI. In no instance did laetrile have activity in any animal tumour system. There is no basis for the use of laetrile in man based on the data derived from experiments in animals," in an interoffice memo sent to Dept Heads of the Mayo Clinic, jan 1974.

Dr. Charles Moertel, of the Mayo Clinic, "Extensive animal tumour studies conducted independently at two outstanding cancer research centres—New York memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK) and the Southern Research Institute-—have shown this drug to be totally without evidence of anticancer activity." In a letter published in the Rochester (Minn.) Post Bulletin, Jan 21 1974.

The facts are, as partially detailed in the letter of March 22, 1974 from Dean Burk to Seymour Perry, that positive, statistically highly significant, anticancer activity by Laetrile in animal tumour systems has been observed in at least 5 independent institutions in 3 widely separated countries of the world, with a variety of animal cancers;

1). Southern Research Institute (Birmingham Alabama), for the NCI, in a majority of 280 BDF1 mice bearing Lewis lung cancers, treated with up to 400 mg Laetrile (Amygdalin MF) per kg body weight, with respect to increased median life span (Dec 3, 1973).

2). Sloan Kettering (New York) with CD8 F1 mice bearing spontaneous mammary carcinomas, inhibition of formation of lung metastases, inhibition of growth of primary tumours, and greater health and appearance of animal hosts, upon treatment with 1-2 gm Laetrile/per kg body weight/day. (June 13, 1973)

3). Scind Laboratories, University of San Francisco, 400 rats bearing Walker 256 carcinoma (200 treated with Amygdalin, 200 controls), with 80% increase in life span at optimum dosage (500 mg Amgdalin/kg body weight). (Oct 10, 1968) Cf. FDA-IND 6734 application, pp. 247-248, 00080-00093. NCI Director Carl Baker wrote Congressman Edwin W. Edwards on Jan 26, 1971: "The data provided by the McNaughton Foundation certainly indicates some activity in animal tumour systems" (emphasis added).

4). Pasteur Institute (Paris), with human cancer strain maintained in mice, treated at optimal dosage og 500 mg Amygdalin Marsan/kg body weight/day, increased life span and delayed tumour growth up to 100% (Dec 6, 1971).

5). Institute von ardenne (Dresden, Germnay), H strain mice bearing Ehrlich ascites carcinoma treated with bitter almond amygdalin ad libitum in addition to regular chow diet, yielded increased life span and decreased rate of cancer growth, treatment beginning 15 days before cancer inoculation (arch. Geschwulstorsch. 42, 135-7 (1973).

No iota of activity, no shred of evidence? It will be interesting to see if FDA Commissioner Schmidt will indeed soon back up his word about issuing a Laetrile IND, a form of FDA approval, incidently, requiring no prior human data.

Cancer News Journal Vol 9, no 3.  Source:  The Arlin J. Brown, Inf Centre, Inc, PO Box 251, Fort Belvoir, VA 22060. 703 451 8638. Tel: 540 752 9511. 

"Every study to date has not found any evidence of efficacy of Laetrile, and if there was one shred of evidence from animal or cell systems, I would issue an IND." Dr. Alexander Schmidt, Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration.