Herpes Tests Are BogusPosted: November 1, 2012 | |
In my last post I wanted to get into the wacky world of herpes testing, but there is enough to cover on this topic that it deserved a post of its own. After my research for the last post led me to the lack of evidence for the existence of all the medically relevant viruses, I wanted to know what exactly is looked for in a herpes test. They must be testing for the presence of the herpes virus in these tests right? No they don’t.
Virologist Dr. Stefan Lanka, Ph.D is one of a handful of doctors who assert that not even one of the medically relevant viruses has been isolated. In a 2005 interview, he voiced concerns regarding testing, and said that “In a test-tube containing an appropriate concentration of acids and bases, minerals and solvents, these blood proteins, also called globulins, will bind arbitrarily with other proteins. Thus you can make any sample taken from an animal or a person test arbitrarily positive or negative.” With this in mind, I’ll outline what happens during these tests after some preliminary discussion.
Let’s talk about antibodies first. The most popular type of herpes test is the antibody test. It’s considered “common knowledge” in the medical world that antibodies signify a strong immune response in the body, so the more antibodies you have, the more it is assumed that your body is reacting to and “fighting” a specific “pathogen.” However, since none of the medically relevant viruses have been shown to be isolated, this appears to simply be dogmatic belief since we can’t be sure that what’s been witnessed in a lab actually involves a virus. The funny thing is, in the case of AIDS, a rise in antibodies is supposed to signal an immunodeficiency, rather than a strong immune response. It can’t work both ways and yet this inconsistency has simply been overlooked by most. We know that the body produces antibodies, but this just proves the existence of antibodies, not a virus. In Dr. Lanka’s opinion, antibodies are simply “soluble blood proteins, which play a central role in the healing of wounds.”
So if there are no viruses present in these tests, what is it that’s been mistaken for them? As mentioned, only indirect markers believed to be associated with the herpes virus are looked for in testing, and the virus is simply assumed to be present in “positive” test samples. Torsten Engelbrecht and Dr. Claus Köhnlein M.D., authors of Virus Mania: How the Medical Industry Continually Invents Epidemics, Making Billion-Dollar Profits at Our Expense, say in their book that “The alleged viruses are in reality micro-particles produced by the body cells themselves.”
Let’s now review the testing methods. I’ll be using language like “assumed to be,” and “supposedly” a lot because although I am a layman on the subject of virology and microbiology, I do trust the opinion of virologist Dr. Stefan Lanka Ph.D., AIDS clinician Claus Köhnlein M.D., and science journalist Torsten Engelbrecht, who have concluded after years of research that there is a lack of evidence for the existence of any medically relevant virus. Therefore, when my sources used language that assumed the presence of a virus, I have opted for more skeptical language. I am going to explain the testing methods to the best of my ability while working only with Internet sources for means of explanation as I have never worked in a lab before. If you are more knowledgeable on the subject and I have made an error, please feel free to comment at the end of this post so that the error can be corrected. I thank you in advance. I obtained this list of testing methods from www.webmd.com.
There appear to be four main methods of testing, none of which find the presence of a herpes virus in your system. Instead, other indirect markers assumed to be associated with the presence of the virus are tested for, such as antigens, antibodies, and new pieces of gene substance, and this is what’s used to determine positive or negative test results.
The first testing method is a viral culture of a fresh sore that’s been swabbed. This means that the cells from the swab are added to a tissue sample and watched over a period of days to see if they “grow.” The swab contents are first prepared by suspending the cells in a liquid, perhaps with antibiotics added, and then the cell liquid is added to some kind of tissue (many of which aren’t actually skin cell tissue, such as mink lung or rabbit kidney), to see if degenerative changes occur in the tissue. If degeneration occurs, the herpes virus is assumed to be present and you get a positive result! This is apparently the “gold standard” test against which all others are measured.
A herpes antigen test is a second kind of test. Antigens are substances that provoke the production of normally one, but sometimes more, types of antibodies. Supposedly, on a herpes viruses, the antigens are located on the surface of an outer lipid bilayer which coats the “virus” and contains twelve surface glycoproteins (some or all of which would be the antigens this test is looking for.) For testing, cells from a fresh sore are smeared onto a slide and the surface of the cells are examined under a microscope for perhaps one or more specific antigens assumed to be specific to the herpes virus. Our bodies are full of all kinds of glycoproteins, and since the herpes virus has never been isolated, the presence of a particular glycoprotein cannot be said to automatically equal the presence of said “virus.”
A third type of test is a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test. The test can be performed on cells, on fluid from a sore, or on blood or other fluid, such as spinal fluid. The test supposedly finds the genetic material (DNA) of the HSV virus and is said to determine the virus type, i.e. HSV-1 or HSV-2. Dr. Stefan Lanka explains what is happening with this type of test in his 2005 interview: “All that has been done is multiplying gene substance by means of the biochemical multiplication method “polymerase chain reaction” [PCR]. With this method it is also possible to arbitrarily multiply new, never previously existing, short pieces of gene substance… It is this artificially produced gene substance which is presented as a virus… That’s all that’s happening.”
The last type of test is an antibody test, and this is the cheapest and most popular method of testing mass numbers of samples. These are your ELISA and Immunoblot (Western Blot) tests. If you got a standard HSV test from a lab, this is likely what it was. It is a blood test in which the sample is searched for antibodies which are supposed to be attributable to a specific type of herpes virus (HSV-1 or HSV-2). It is simply assumed that the antibodies (produced in reaction to the presence of certain antigens) are present to “fight” a herpes virus “infection.” The results are also stated as an index value (e.g. 0.7 or 1.5) with a value above 1.0 meaning a positive test result. This means that you can have low levels of a “herpes antibody” in your sample and test negative. It’s not black or white, it’s more like shades of grey, which makes no sense since with herpes, its supposed to be that either you have it or you don’t.
During my research on these tests I came across a lot of concerns from the general public regarding false positives on their herpes antibody tests – confused virgins, people who had no symptoms but high levels of antibodies. Elizabeth Boskey, who has a Ph.D. in biophysics and is a researcher, writer, and educator on the subject of STDs, had some interesting things to say about this. To summarize, she said that if we are to make the “reasonable assumption” that around 50% of the population is “infected” with HSV1, and around 25% are “infected” with HSV2, then ELISA tests are approximately 92% accurate for positive results, and Immunoblot tests are about 94%-95% accurate for positive results. She then goes on to say “it is worth noting though, that if my prevalence estimates were off and we worked from the assumption that only 10% of the population is infected with either virus, then although almost all negative tests would be accurate, positive tests would only be accurate 55% to 85% of the time.” What if 0% of the population had the virus? I wonder how many “false positives” the tests would show then?
Dr. Lanka explains this a little better: that positive test results on either ELISA or Western Blot tests don’t make sense since it has not been shown that the proteins used from the test samples are from the actual virus. All that can be supposed it that the proteins come from whatever type of cells that were collected in the sample.
So it appears that when it comes to herpes testing, the best advice would be: Don’t bother! Testing gives no direct evidence of a herpes virus in your system, in addition to the lack of evidence that the virus even exists! If you missed my post on the German New Medicine perspective on herpes symptoms, check it out and see if it resonates for you. If you can figure out what sort of touch or separation conflict is causing your “herpes” symptoms, you can learn to downgrade the symptoms or even overcome them altogether. The best part is, there’s no virus, so you’re not contagious! There’s even a chance your symptoms occur because you are afraid to touch others and “spread the virus,” so take a load off and go enjoy life with no apologies! Guilt free kissing and sex are your birthright!
~ “I’m absolutely sure that no antibody test in medicine has any absolute meaning.” – Dr. Stefan Lanka, Ph.D.
* Disclaimer: I am not a doctor and this is not medical advice.