|By Robert Cohen Executive Director|
Paying The Price With Increased Cancer Deaths America's Food and Drug Administration approved the use of Monsanto's genetically engineered bovine growth hormone (rbGH) for cows on February 4th, 1994. Remarkably, milk from rbGH-treated test herds was allowed into America's milk supply seven years before actual approval. One cow can produce 10,000 quarts of milk per year. A herd with 200 cows could produce 1 million quarts per year. Conceivably, hundreds of test herds might have been producing one quart of experimental milk for every American to drink during each of the years prior to approval. Since 1994, most of America's milk supply has been tainted with milk produced from cows injected with genetically modified organisms. Those symbolic seven fat years of ignorance may have resulted in cracking the mirror of bad luck for genetically modified foods. Like Joseph's amazing technicolor dream, those years after rbGH approval have resulted in a cancer explosion of seven years of bad luck. The rest of the world watched America's experiment. The European community considered an application for rbGH approval, which was turned down. Health Canada also turned down Monsanto's application, preferring to wait and see what might occur in the United States. Now the world will learn the truth. How and why did FDA allow experimental milk into the food supply in 1989? I obtained an internal memorandum that reveals the innermost betrayal in the inner sanctum of FDA. Monsanto had applied for approval of their genetically engineered bovine growth hormone in December of 1986. Nearly eight years later, they received final approval. During those eight years, Monsanto invested $500,000,000 and submitted 55,000 pages of data to FDA. Two months after the original application, Monsanto sprung a trap. They requested a "zero withdrawal and milk discard period." What that means is that Monsanto requested that FDA allow milk from test herds to be placed into America's milk supply without any further research. In granting Monsanto's 1986 request, Judy Juskevich wrote: "Based on the results of the oral feeding study and our knowledge of the characteristics and biological activity of bovine somatotropin, we have no objection to granting the sponsor's requests." For most of my adult life I have trusted the FDA. I assumed that our government health regulators cared about human health and safety. This memorandum clearly demonstrates that my trust in FDA had been incorrectly placed. Can anything be clearer than this? That 28-day study was "pivotal" in FDA's decision. It was more than pivotal. The entire approval was based upon that lone study. Milk from dairy herds treated with Monsanto's hormone was introduced into America's milk supply because FDA deemed that milk was safe to drink seven years before the hormone was approved. Before citing an animal research study, let me say that I do not believe in citing animal research, for it proves nothing. Half of the cancers rats get, mice do not get. Half of the cancers mice get, rats do not get. If one cannot relate one species of rodent to another, that shows the absurdity in applying experimental data from one species of rodent to humans. Rats do not even have gallbladders. They lack human enzymes, which enable us to process certain foods. I make one exception to my rule. When pharmaceutical companies lie, as they did with the genetically engineered bovine growth hormone, I then write and lecture about their deceptions. In the case of the milk hormone, Monsanto and FDA concluded that there were no biological effects upon lab animals from rbGH-treatment. That was not true. Most Americans are unaware that laboratory animals treated with rbGH experienced enormous changes in their lymphatic systems. The spleens of these animals grew dramatically. FDA claimed that there was no evidence of biological effects. Nonsense. The approval process for rbGH was the most controversial drug application in the history of the Food & Drug Administration. In order to address that controversy, the FDA published an article in the journal SCIENCE (August 24, 1990). Data in that paper reveal that the average male rat injected with rbGH developed a spleen 39.6 percent larger than the spleen of the control animals after just 90 days of treatment. The spleens from rbGH-treated females increased in size by a factor of 46 percent. Spleens of animals receiving rbGH orally also increased in size, although not as dramatically as those animals injected with the hormone. Based upon injections, researchers had the responsibility of rigorously reviewing oral ingestion data. They did not. These are not normal reactions, and portray animals in distress. These animals were "under attack" by the genetically engineered hormone. The spleen is the first sentinel of defense in a mammal's lymphatic system. Lab animals treated with rbGH developed lymphatic abnormalities. After reviewing the actual data from Monsanto's experiment in 1994, I predicted that the rates of death from lymphatic cancers would soar in America. A cancer takes 8-10 years to grow from one cell to one- million cells. The timeline for cancer deaths would be the year 2000 data. I anxiously awaited those data. America's cancer surveillance statistics are three years behind real time. Today, in April of 2003, I have just had the opportunity to review the actual data. As Americans continue to ingest genetically engineered milk and dairy products, lymphatic cancer death rates have soared. Americans have become laboratory subjects in genetic engineering's experiment, and the resulting data indicates extreme cause for concern. Let me make one further comment about cancer. As a result of increased surveillance and awareness, cancers are being diagnosed much earlier than ever before. As a result of increased technologies, cancer death rates have been reversed. Breast cancer death rates have dropped. The May 3, 2003 issue of the British Medical Journal (Vol. 326:949) reports that mammography screening in European nations has cut the number of deaths from breast cancer by nearly 50 percent. Prostate cancer death rates have decreased. The same can be said for colon cancer death rates. Sadly, my prediction for lymphomas has been right on targt. Death rates have soared, despite better medical treatment. Here are the numbers, as recently published by the SEER cancer statistics review and the National Cancer Institute. Rates are per 100,000 of population. RESULTS: From 1980 to 2000, colon cancer death rates decreased 25.2 percent in males, and decreased 27.9 percent in females. From 1980 to 2000, prostate cancer death rates decreased 7.6 percent in males. From 1980 to 2000, breast cancer death rates decreased 15.8 percent in females. From 1980 to 2000, lymphoma cancer death rates increased 37.3 percent in males, and increased 26.4 percent in females. I am shocked. And vindicated. Milk is indeed a deadly poison. Shall we thank Monsanto, or is this about dairy? The consumption of concentrated dairy products has increased dramatically in the last 30 years. In 1970, the average American consumed just 10 pounds of cheese per year. Today, the average American consumes 31 pounds of cheese. Cows treated with Monsanto's rbGH produce milk with increased levels of another powerful hormone, IGF-I. There are hundreds of millions of different proteins in nature, and only one hormone that is identical between any two species. That powerful growth hormone is insulin-like growth factor, or IGF-I. IGF-I survives digestion and has been identified as a key factor in cancer's growth. IGF-I is identical in human and cow. If you believe that breast feeding "works" to protect lactoferrins and immunoglobulins from digestion (and benefit the nursing infant), you must also recognize that milk is a hormonal delivery system. By drinking cow's milk, one delivers IGF-I in a bioactive form to the body's cells. When IGF-I from cow's milk alights upon an existing cancer, it's the signal to grow. To proliferate. Monsanto worked closely with government regulators, and their first priority was to convince consumers that the new GMO milk was the same as the old milk. It was not. The February 9, 1994 Executive Branch White House Report on rbGH, concluded: "BGH-treated milk is safe because it is indistinguishable from normal milk." That was not true. A February 6, 1994 statement issued by C. Everett Koop, America's ex-Surgeon General, convinced America's media: "Milk from cows given supplemental bovine somatotropin is the same as any other milk...Unfortunately, a few fringe groups are using misleading statements and blatant falsehoods as part of a long-running campaign to scare consumers about a perfectly safe food." That was also not true. Monsanto also issued a press release: "Five independent authorities, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), National Institutes of Health (NIH), World Health Organization (WHO), the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), and ex-Surgeon General C. Everett Koop had found rbGH-treated milk to be indistinguishable from normal milk." After investigation one of those so-called independent authorities, the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), I learned that the two authors of a JAMA study (Volume 264;8, 8/22/90) both worked for Monsanto. JAMA reported: "From 1984 to 1986, Dr. Daughaday was the recipient of a research contract from Monsanto Company, a small fraction of which was paid to Dr. Daughaday as a consulting fee." I learned that his co-author, David Barbano, also worked for Monsanto. These authorities were not independent. SCIENCE magazine confirmed a difference in their 8/24/90 edition: "Recombinant rbGH treatment produces an increase in the concentration of insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I) in cow's milk." The World Health Organization also confirmed my fears, and contradicted media reports: "After somidobove (rbGH) injection, mean IGF-I levels in the treated milk are always higher than those found in the controls." Even the National Institutes of Health confirmed the lie in their December, 1990 National Institutes of Health Assessment of Bovine Somatotropin: "Levels of IGF increase in milk after cows are treated with rbGH." The following sixteen references together support sixteen converging laser-like beams of evidence, focusing their pinpoint light upon America's 21st century cancer fuel. "A strong positive association was observed between IGF-I levels and prostate cancer risk." Science, vol. 279. January 23, 1998 ________________________________ "Insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-I, a mitogenic and antiapoptotic peptide, can affect the proliferation of breast epithelial cells, and is thought to have a role in breast cancer." The Lancet, vol. 351. May 9, 1998 ________________________________ "Insulin-like growth factors (IGFs), in particular IGF-I and IGF-II, strongly stimulate the proliferation of a variety of cancer cells, including those from lung cancer. High plasma levels of IGF-I were associated with an increased risk of lung cancer. Plasma levels of IGF-I are higher...in patients with lung cancer than in control subjects." Journal of the National Cancer Institute, vol. 91, no. 2. January 20, 1999. ________________________________ "Insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) is expressed in many tumor cell lines and has a role in both normal cell proliferation and in the growth of cancers. Cancer Gene Ther, 2000 Mar, 7:3 ________________________________ "The insulin-like growth factor (IGF) system is widely involved in human carcinogenesis. A significant association between high circulating IGF-I concentrations and an increased risk of lung, colon, prostate and pre-menopausal breast cancer has recently been reported. Lowering plasma IGF-I may thus represent an attractive strategy to be pursued..." Int J Cancer, 2000 Aug, 87:4, 601-5 ________________________________ "...serum IGF-I levels increased significantly in the milk drinking group, an increase of about 10% above baseline-but was unchanged in the control group." Journal of the American Dietetic Association, vol. 99, no. 10. October 1999 __________________________________ "Human Insulin-like growth factor (IGF-I) and bovine IGF-I are i dentical. Both contain 70 amino acids in the identical sequence." Judith C. Juskevich and C. Greg Guyer. SCIENCE, vol. 249. August 24, 1990. ____________________________________________ "IGF-I is critically involved in the aberrant growth of human breast cancer cells." M. Lippman. J. Natl. Inst. Health Res., 1991, 3. ____________________________________________ "Estrogen regulation of IGF-I in breast cancer cells would support the hypothesis that IGF-I has a regulatory function in breast cancer." A.V. Lee, Mol-Cell- Endocrinol., March, 99(2). ____________________________________________ "IGF-I is a potent growth factor for cellular proliferation in the human breast carcinoma cell line." J.C. Chen, J-Cell-Physiol., January, 1994, 158(1) ____________________________________________ "Insulin-like growth factors are key factors for breast cancer growth." J.A. Figueroa, J-Cell-Physiol., Nov., 1993, 157(2) ____________________________________________ "IGF-I produces a 10-fold increase in RNA levels of cancer cells. IGF-I appears to be a critical component in cellular proliferation." X.S. Li, Exp-Cell-Res., March, 1994, 211(1) ____________________________________________ "IGF-I plays a major role in human breast cancer cell growth." E.A. Musgrove, Eur-J-Cancer, 29A (16), 1993 ____________________________________________ "IGF-I has been identified as a key factor in breast cancer." Hankinson. The Lancet, vol. 351. May 9, 1998 ____________________________________________ "Serum IGF-I levels increased significantly in milk drinkers, an increase of about 10% above baseline but was unchanged in the control group." Robert P. Heaney, Journal of the American Dietetic Association, vol. 99, no. 10. October 1999 ____________________________________________ "IGF-1 accelerates the growth of breast cancer cells." M. Lippman Science, Vol. 259, January 29, 1993 Was it biotechnology which increased IGF-I levels in dairy products, or was it the increased consumption rate of concentrated dairy products such as cheese and ice cream? I believe that we've suffered a double whammy effect. Cancer and dairy products have one thing in common. The delivery mechanism of powerful growth hormones which make cancers grow. Companion article:
Robert Cohen, author of: MILK A-Z
Executive Director (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Dairy Education Board
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