Chapter 12 - Laboratory Corroborations
With all the evidence which is practically impregnable, both physiologically and psychologically, from any scientific attack that we know, you would think we could write Q.E.D. to the proof of GH3's efficacy.
There were scientists, organized primarily by Dr. Alfred Sapse, who were responsible for Gerovital s revival in North America. They did not know each other, though some were at the same universities. They were scientist-researchers who had never treated a human being and never would, because they lived in a world of cells and subatomic particles: a world teeming with life, though not touching on life as we think of it. They were the ones who proved in their vast laboratories, scattered from Massachusetts to Florida, Ohio, and California, why GH3 works not only on cells, both human and animal, but on microscopic worms, rats and other life forms which are remote from ourselves.
In cancer research, almost every month a rat cancer cure is heralded as a wonderful clue to the solution of human cancer, and then almost every time it fades away. This is not the case with GH3, where studies were carried on with humans for many years before annual experiments began. Animal testing was not needed to show practical results (i.e., human applicability).
Still, animal and cellular testing have been of great value, because they corroborate in every detail the findings on humans, as well as the hypotheses as to why GH3 works.
Several distinguished researchers have been involved in the laboratory research. Their place in history will be assured when Gerovital H3 is universally accepted. They include Dr. J. Earle Officer, professor of pathology at the University of Southern California School of Medicine (now deceased, as we will relate); Dr. Richard F. Baker, professor of microbiology, USC; Dr. Bert M. Zuckerman; professor of nematology, University of Massachusetts; Dr. M. David MacFarlane, assistant professor of pharmacology, USC; Dr. Josef P. Hrachovec, research associate, Andrus Gerontology Center, USC; Dr. Tom M. Yau, Cleveland Psychiatric Institute; and Dr. Bernard M. Wagner, clinical professor of pathology, Columbia University, College of Physicians and Surgeons.
Many other researchers have contributed to studies of procaine and GH3, but we list only the laboratory researchers who have produced most significant work in the United States under the jurisdiction of the FDA.
Each of these, in his specialty, emerged with a piece of the intricate jigsaw puzzle of the hows and whys of Gerovital H3 and its most active ingredient, procaine.
As we have mentioned, many remedies, including aspirin, are used today without knowing how or why they work. Now wouldn't you think that after 75 years of use and intensive research, some scientist would come forth brandishing the rationale for aspirin and no doubt get a Nobel prize for it? We complete complex trips to the moon and explore the solar system with plans for interstellar exploration. We can conquer Everest, the highest mountain on our planet, and probe the deepest crevasse in the ocean floor, but we cannot explain how aspirin and many other drugs work. Stimulation of cortisone via the adrenal glands, suppression of blood-clotting factors, and dozens of other hypotheses have provided only partial answers. it'seems the body/mind/spirit (or whatever you wish to call it) is more complex than the physical universe.
Thus if GH3 laboratory researchers can find out independently how GH3 works, it is a stupendous job, because GH3 is more complicated than aspirin (or so we think now). The GH3 researchers did not know of or correlate the work of others in the field. Each one observed under his microscope some particular aspect of the problem, rat brain tissue, the life cycle of nematodes, or the human cell under various conditions. None of the researchers was aware there was something they had to find. Toward the end of their experiments the researchers exchanged views at scientific meetings (with one exception, which I will. describe presently). I am well acquainted with almost all the researchers, having observed many of them at work and when they have time to relax, and know how independently they worked.
Much of the research, admirable as it has proved to be, only proves that man cannot understand, much less correlate, knowledge at his present stage of development unless he has a correlator to do it for him--and I don't mean computers, valuable as they are. A new system of learning for mankind has to be developed, or we will either be in the hands of a simplistic dictatorship or in chaos--—we will explain how these grim eventualities may be avoided. (See Appendix 24.)
As a first example of how specialties can be coordinated, take the work of Dr. Bert M. Zuckerman at the University of Massachusetts Laboratory of Experimental Biology. (See Appendix 10.) He is a specialist on nematodes, which are microscopic worms. He has spent his relatively short working life studying these worms, and has made some remarkable observations about them.
You might ask what the hell worms have to do with man's aging process. Well, as Dr. Zuckerman told me during our meetings in Miami and New York, the nematodes he uses in his aging studies have—for their size—a well-developed body system: about a thousand cells. They possess many of the organs characteristic of highly evolved creatures such as men. Their cells resemble man's in performing the necessary functions of nutrition, nerve transmission, excretion, and reproduction. Their life span is only 24 days, which affords ample time for study: all the changes which occur during aging take only a few days. Nematodes are about the lowest form of life capable of providing some of the answers on the highest plane--—presumably, us.
Nematodes have certain aging traits remarkably reminiscent of our own red blood cells. With aging, the membranes of their cells become fragile and the cells get heavier; apparently they are burdened by metabolic processes in the necessary chemical buildups and breakdowns characteristic of all life.
Zuckerman found he could alter the seemingly inevitable pattern of birth, maturity and death with Gerovital H3. The little worms treated with GH3, including the old ones, respond with less fragility in their cellular membranes and thus become candidates for a longer life span. Being a researcher of supreme originality, Zuckerman was looking for life-preserving substances in other realms, partly in vitamin B, as he told me, based on unfinished work. Other workers have recently found that vitamin B increases the life span of nematodes, which corroborates our writings on vitamin E and its role in the antiaging process.
Recently, Zuckerman's research with GH3 has gathered momentum as he found that nematodes have two more characteristics of aging in common with man, which will enable critical evaluation of how GH3 works. First, aging nematodes form large amounts of lipofuscin (age pigment), the same material which shows up in the skin of old people as "liver spots." Preliminary studies indicate that in nematodes exposed to massive concentrations of GH3, the development of age pigment is retarded; work is under way to confirm and expand these observations.
Second, Zuckerman's research team has recently found that nematode membranes lose their negative surface charge during aging, the same as man's aging red blood cell membranes do. Recently GH3 has been applied to see how it effects the membrane molecules. The results of both studies will soon be published.
Let us continue with our list of laboratory heroes---though they would balk at the use of that term. But we have to tell the truth, and we will not permit modesty on the part of our researchers. Dr. Richard F. Baker, in my opinion, should be linked with Dr. J. Earle Officer, since both worked closely on GH3. I interviewed them on tape several times at their USC laboratories, and later by telephone to confirm and extend the significance of their findings. At medical meetings we became more personally acquainted, and I learned of the complete dedication of each of these great researchers toward his goal, even without knowing he was approaching the ultimate goal. Dr. Baker s contribution resulted in the most promising major development in sickle-cell anemia (see Appendix 11); he found that the abnormal red blood cells which produce sickle cells, due to a hereditary defect in some black people, can change back to normal after use of GH3. Dr. Baker worked with colleagues at USC: Dr. L Julian Haywood, associate professor of medicine and director of the NIH sponsored Sickle Cell Disease Center, Los Angeles County University, Southern California Medical Center; and Dr. Darleen Powers, associate professor of medicine (pediatrics).
Sickle-cell anemia is caused by a hereditary defect in hemoglobin, the substance which transports oxygen to the cells. Red blood cells deprived of oxygen curl up into the shape of a crescent or sickle--—hence the name of the disease. They become inflexible, so they cannot be forced by the pressure of the blood through the tiny capillaries through which they must pass in order to nourish the body s cells. The cells become inflexible because their membranes have become so porous they allow calcium to penetrate into the cell in great amounts, up to eight times the normal amount; the calcium becomes fixed to the cell wall, since it cannot be disposed of properly by the cell's ordinary means. Calcium, for reasons still not understood, causes an increase in cell membrane rigidity. A rigid cell carries little oxygen and cannot be squeezed into the unbelievably tiny, thin thread shape a normal red blood cell has to assume each time it makes its incredible circuit of the body through the capillaries. It is no wonder that the calcium-loaded, irreversibly sickled cells die in only five to ten days, compared to a normal cell's life span of 120 days.
Calcium sticks to cells in other conditions besides sickle-cell anemia, in calcification of almost every tissue and organ, including the arteries (causing some atherosclerosis, which in turn causes heart failures, strokes and many circulatory diseases involving the kidneys and other vital organs).
Thus Dr. Baker's findings about sickle cells will very likely provide some answers about why GH3 affects such a variety of illnesses (all of the maladies commonly associated with growing old) and affects such a number of organs--—heart, blood vessels, kidney, liver, skin and lungs.
But this is not all the good news. Dr. Baker and his colleagues found that cells supposedly irreversibly sickled, if treated with GH3 either before or after the sickling process, become normal or near normal. Irreversibility becomes reversible. What was subscribed to by legions of scientist-researchers suddenly has become untrue.
It is like telling a traditional scientist (which means about 99% of those practicing the craft) that some lifelong belief is untrue—that (in another era) blood circulates through the body; that yellow fever is caused by a minute parasite carried within the body of a certain species of female mosquito which must be infected by biting an infected human being; that many diseases are caused by invisible creatures so small they can invade a cell so small that it, too, is invisible except with magic mirrors; that these diseases can be destroyed by invisible beings who fight and displace them; that (in this era) the brain has certain extrasensory powers which cannot be measured by known scientific instruments, only observed and recorded by a few; that the brain, the heart and every organ of the body has its own electrical output, which can be observed and recorded only by delicately calibrated instruments; that an unseen electrical beam which flashes through a rare gem can generate enough power to destroy any material object in its path or can be used to perform the most delicate eye surgery; that a certain stone when stimulated by an electric current will vibrate millions of times a second and can be used to explore the insides of hardened steel, the ocean floor, catch the ocean's fishes, and locate and destroy brain tumors and other cancers, as well as treat many other ailments such as bursitis. Or finally, that another invisible power, locked within what scientists had once called the smallest unit of matter, could be utilized for the most potent destruction of material objects, including man, then harnessed for the ultimate fulfillment of man's dreams: not only to prolong his physical life, but to propel him to the stars.
This is an episodic account of what the human race has accomplished because of a few true scientists. Each of these advances, which I m sure my readers will recognize, were achieved in spite of the priest-scientists who gradually assumed control of civilization as it evolved. Progress was made by a small fraction of thinker-doers at a sacrificial cost. Frequently they paid with their lives. Today the ruling priest-scientists don't usually burn or torture the unorthodox ones physically; they just ignore or ridicule them.
However, we may be escaping the Iron Collar Age of Oppression and Ridicule. We may be able soon to give the old boys a shot of GH3 in the nether portion of their anatomy that will clear the poor one-track, narrow-thinking robotic devices they call brains, making them what a human being is supposed to be: a truly thinking being capable of going to the stars without his earthly prejudices.
At any rate, the news of the first basic, safe way of approaching an effective treatment for sickle-cell anemia will come as welcome news to the "third world." Now, the blacks in the third world and in America are those, primarily, who possess this blood quirk which grants a degree of immunity to malaria and other tropical diseases, but which, now that malaria is less common and more treatable, has become a disease more deadly than the one it has combated.
There are 50,000 blacks in the United States who suffer from sickle-cell anemia; millions more throughout the world have their life spans cut short after suffering episodes of terrible pain, because their red blood cells cannot nourish their vital cells and tissues.
Many years of research have failed to produce a cure for sickle-cell anemia. The last promising approach used dangerous substances such as potassium or sodium cyanate. As with many other attempted remedies, the treatment is often worse than the disease. With GH3, the main problem will be how to get enough GH3 into the body to be effective in restoring the sickled cells to normal. The answer will probably come in the form of recently developed machines which can cleanse and purify the blood outside the body, at the same time infusing the blood cells with GH3, causing them to lose their abnormal load of calcium. This procedure would restore the cells to normal in addition to furnishing them with all the "extras" of GH3 treatment.
Such machines are being developed and will be simplified versions of the heart, lung and kidney machines now in use. New, miniaturized machines will be manufactured at a fraction of the cost of today's machines. Cost is the main drawback of the big machines; as everyone knows, the price of treating a kidney patient with dialysis is prohibitive to all except a selected few who can afford $50,000 a year for treatment. Some new, smaller machines are already in pilot use and should be in general use shortly. As we have stated, the use of GH3, plus the use of the new cheaper methods of cleansing and medicating blood rapidly, may very possibly open up unprecedented vistas of treating a number of diseases.
Since researchers always lack money, and Washington has cut down the funds for basic research, the need for basic scientific research is greater than ever. Dr. Baker is one of those truly original researchers who need grants and appropriations to continue a most promising work which will affect all of mankind.
Drs. M. David MacFarlane and Josef Hrachovec, at the University of Southern California, working independently and without knowledge of each other's activities—except when they had reached identical conclusions—were the researchers primarily responsible for proving that GH3 was a safe and effective inhibitor of monoamine oxidase (MAO). We have pointed out that MAO has been identified as the chief culprit in depressions, particularly those in middle age and the elderly. Until these investigators published their reports there had been no solid, scientific work that elucidated how GH3 was producing its beneficial effects in aging individuals during the more than twenty years of its use.
Dr. Hrachovec has a most extensive background in the study of aging, beginning at the Faculty of Aging in Paris, continuing at the College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University, New York; the New York University School of Medicine; UCLA School of Public Health; and finally at the Gerontology Research Center, USC. Like any more credentials? Well, there are more, but they would be boring. We have listed a partial record of Dr. Hrachovec's credentials so that readers can realize the scientific caliber of the researchers who have investigated GH3. Almost all the other GH3 researchers have similar and/or equal backgrounds (in different specialties, of course), but if •we spelled out all our researcher's qualifications, you would be reading a book of credentials and curricula vitae, which I am sure you have no intention of doing. However, again I refer you to the Appendix, where all the necessary scientific facts are accumulated. If anyone requests more, they are available to those seeking the truth.
Now, after this explanatory discursion, back to the story of Drs. Hrachovec and MacFarlane.
Both researchers reported their findings at scientific meetings. Both found that GH3 is an MAO-inhibitor, working on rat brains, livers and hearts. Expanding on the initial studies, MacFarlane later found that GH3 is a weak, reversible, selective and fully cornpetitive inhibitor of the enzyme MAO. (For these MacFarlane papers see Appendixes 12 and 13; see also Appendix 14. For abstracts of reports by Dr. Hrachovec see Appendixes 15 and 16.) Both researchers demonstrated that GH3 is significantly superior to plain procaine in MAO-inhibiting effect. Those interested in the scientific methodology are referred to the Appendixes. Let us hope that you and your doctor can understand the scientific terminology of these papers. I doubt it, though an expert in a particular segment of science could possibly give his views about his own subject-- nematodes, for instance.
I asked my friend Dave MacFarlane to explain what he meant in plain American-English by a weak, reversible, competitive antagonist to MAO. I was asking Dave MacFarlane, in contradistinction to M. David MacFarlane, Ph.D., who writes wonderful scientific jargonese for the wonderfully scientific jargonese journals which even their own readers find hard to decipher.
Dave answered: "Describing the mechanism by which GH3 produces its beneficial effects is something like describing a game of musical chairs. As you know, Herb, MAO is responsible for regulating the levels of certain substances in the brain required for the optimal functioning of this organ by promoting their destruction when they upset the ‘homeostatic balance. But, as explained elsewhere, MAO overdoes this, almost universally, at age 45 and after. These substances in the brain are destroyed after coming in contact with a specific site of MAO (the chair). My research has shown that GH3 can also sit on this chair on MAO and by doing so, GH3 can prevent the substances in the brain from sitting in the chair and hence can prevent their destruction. When GH3 sits in the MAO chair, the levels of the substances in the brain can rise and return to normal, thereby relieving the signs of aging due to elevated levels of activity of MAO. One of the really important things about how GH3 works is that if the body again needs to use the full activity of MAO the GH3 can be pushed out of the chair, thus restoring the functions of MAO. When the need for the activity of MAO passes, GH3 again assumes its place on the chair to prevent continued excessive destruction of substances needed for normal brain function."
He continued: "One beneficial and unique aspect of GH3 is that GH3 inhibits the activity of excessive amounts of enzymes such as MAO which are not needed or are detrimental. Most of the other antidepressant drugs which curtail MAO actually destroy MAO permanently (irreversibly)—thereby creating all sorts of bad side effects. After inhibiting MAO by these other antidepressant drugs, it takes the body many days—even after the drugs are discontinued—to build back the necessary supply of MAO that may be needed in an emergency."
Dr. MacFarlane is now research director of Meyer Laboratories Institute of Research in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. He is correlating his brilliant experiments on GH3 and will publish the results shortly.
I think his simplistic, yet graphic explanation of why GH3 works is adequate for our present purposes. (Again, see Appendixes 12--14 for technical details.) I know that MacFarlane and Hrachovec's research results will be an integral part of the demonstration of why and how GH3 functions in the animal as well as the human being.
Drs. MacFarlane, Hrachovec, Zuckerman, and Baker have all contributed greatly to the solid wall of evidence now rising to corroborate in the laboratory what has been shown in practical medical treatment of human beings. There were two more giants of research who matched these others.
One was my friend Dr. J. Earle Officer, assistant professor of pathology at USC. Although not in the same department at the medical school, Drs. Baker and Officer were close friends, something unusual in a university so large that one department rarely knows of the existence of another, much less where to find it.
Dr. Baker not only knew Dr. Officer's location but drove me to see him. Baker had just shown me his giant electron microscope. Its scanning devices, recording apparatus, and ability to focus and translate images into instantaneous pictures which appear on a glowing green fluorescent television screen make it one of the most useful in the world today. With its pilot's seat, vast number of dials, and pushbutton controls, the machine looked like some fantastic stage prop out of "Star Trek," or some science fiction movie—or like a machine in a NASA spaceship.
This was the machine (among others, of course) which Dr. Baker used to prove his findings about GH3.
During this and subsequent interviews Baker, Officer and I talked about the progress of their work and their plans for the future. The interviews were taped, since I have found tape much more reliable than memory, and attempts to take notes are most disconcerting for everyone, including me. Just set the recorder down, put the mike in an unobtrusive place, then forget it everyone else does too. Then conversation can be informal and casuaL Many times the air of informality will turn everyone on and they'll say things they never would have thought of otherwise.
The sum of our conversations can be set down now, as the results of them were published later, and form an integral part of the proof about GH3.
On the personal side I should report that Officer was suffering from Parkinson s disease, which he had acquired as a result of a bout with encephalitis contracted during a previous experiment. How GH3 brought him near to complete recovery is a story we'll tell later. Here is a brief summary of his experiments with GH3.
First, in cells from wild mice embryos treated with GH3 three times a week during the cells maturation and aging period, the aging process was either halted, slowed down, or reversed.
Second, Officer tested Gerovita~ H3. against Herpes Simplex viruses I and II, which are responsible for cold sores and a most potent venereal disease, and in addition cause various forms of cancer in animals and have been closely implicated with cancer in man. Thus Herpes Simplex virus is not so simple after all-- as the world's foremost virologists now acknowledge. Officer found that GH3 not only kept the virus from damaging cells when suddenly injected into their culture, but also kept the virus placed there previously from becoming active.
Third, Officer demonstrated that GH3 kept C-type virus (known to cause cancer in animals) from activating itself into a cancer-producing substance. The implications of Officer's work are so sweeping and profound that we can only speculate on them at the moment. However, his discoveries fit in with every recent hypothesis. Dr. Officer's paper describing his work in detail is to be found in Appendix 17. His work is must reading for those interested in learning how true scientists operate. The rationale for GH3 will be found in Chapter 16.
During the long conversations with Drs. Baker and Officer, I learned that Officer's work had been done on rats and mice—which is natural enough, since primary research is usually done on rats, guinea pigs and other small, inexpensive animals. Most basic science researchers never see human patients; such is the cornpartmentalization of modern, specialized science. The thought occurred to me that much time and effort could be saved by using blood cells from human beings who had been treated, or not treated, with GH3. Both doctors were intrigued by the idea.
I told them: "All you have to do is call Drs. Sidney Cohen and Keith Ditman, and I m sure you can get all the blood you need from their patients, which they collect periodically for laboratory tests."
Dr. Baker told me: "You know, I think you've made a good suggestion. It could cut our work short by many months. Sometimes we're so close to the problem that we don't get the broad picture. Besides, we don t know what's going on in other areas."
"That's my job," I replied, "to try and see all the angles, make suggestions if possible, and then put the whole thing together in a book so that it's scientific and yet interesting enough so people will want to read it."
The next day I called Dr. Cohen. He, too, thought the idea was a good one, as did Dr. Sapse, the coordinator of the GH3 program. The work on procaine-treated human cells was begun soon thereafter, shortening the time required for proof of GH3's efficacy. As I had told Baker and Officer: "You could work for years, proving it on ten generations of rats, yet there s a possibility it won't work on humans. This has happened many times before, as you know." They agreed.
Dr. Baker had told me that his friend Dr. Officer had Parkinson's disease, which is characterized by tremors in the arms and legs and also a sort of facial paralysis. It affects almost every part of the body, since it invades nerve centers in the brain (extrapyramidal syndrome). There is a progressive deterioration of nerve and muscle as the body and brain gradually degenerate. The disease occurs mostly in aging people, often induced by prior brain disease such as encephalitis.
This was the case with Officer. We became friends almost immediately; you can see and feel the friendliness and true cordiality emanating from him as it does from Baker; as indeed it does from almost every great researcher I have met. There is no pretense, because if a man is profound enough, he knows he knows almost nothing compared to what there is to know. Of course, some are shyer than others and sometimes they try to hide behind scientific jargon. Not so with Officer or Baker, or with any other GH3 researchers I have known.
Toward the end of our talk, after we-had established a warm rapport, Officer said: "You know, I'm a hell of a lot better than I was a year ago."
I had noticed very little of the symptoms of Parkinson's and was planning to comment on it.
"I'll tell you why," Officer went on. "it's GH3. You see, I'd tried L-dopa [the accepted drug for treatmentl with no luck. Too many side reactions. The stuff made me sick and it didn t do any good anyway. In fact, there's no cure for this condition, as you know."
I did know; but I had read many reports from abroad (including Ana Aslan's studies) that GH3 often cleared up the symptoms of Parkinson s disease, as well as other symptoms and signs of aging. So had Dr. Officer. Therefore, when he saw the effect of GH3 on mouse cells, he made the logical assumption that GH3 favorably influences human brain cells, even those that are semiworkable or supposedly nonworkable.
Officer continued: "So I corralled a small supply of GH3 and started taking it. The effect was what they call miraculous—and so do I. I thought I was a goner, and by God, here I am, able to get to the lab everyday and work--and I believe I can think," he added in a mischievous tone.
"You should have seen Earle a few months ago,"
Baker interposed. "Well, you wouldn't have seen him because he was at home. He couldn't make it to work. He was a real mess and we thought we would lose him"
"Hell, I couldn t make it to the bathroom half the time, much less to the lab," Officer said. "So there's no question of what did it."
Later at scientific meetings I introduced Officer to friends, and when I told them he had Parkinson's and was a living example of what GH3 had done, it was easy to read the skepticism on their faces. Yet they were convinced when they spoke with Officer and then read of his pioneering work on cells.
About a year later (around October 1974), I again flew to Los Angeles to follow up my in-depth coverage of GH3. Of course, I called Baker and Officer at the earliest opportunity. Baker told me: "You probably didn't know it because you were traveling, but Earle has had a bad setback. He hit a rock or something in the road while he was bicycling. It threw him off and he smashed his head on the pavement. He was in a coma for weeks at the hospital. He's better now, but can't work. I know he wants to see you, so maybe we could meet in my office, if he's able to come down."
I was saddened by this news, but I was even more saddened when I saw Earle Officer. He was shaking in both arms, and he could not see very well because he had double vision and could not focus his eyes to read. I ll never forget that man's courage in attempting to do things which once—even a year ago—would have been easy. He could still remember vaguely certain references and still think positively about the future.
But it was obvious to everyone, including him, that the blow on the head had set him back even more than when encephalitis had hit him with subsequent Parkinson s disease.
The three of us attempted to talk about recent findings, but when Baker was called away for a consultation on another project, I asked Officer: "Earle, we've got to try to pull you out of this somehow. What the hell do the doctors say?"
"You know damn well what they say. One says this, one says that, but you and I know what they're saying. Also, that doesn't mean anything, because they never thought I'd come out of .the Parkinson's. I did come out of it. You saw it, and so did everybody else. I think there s a good chance I can come out of this one, if I can get some more GH3."
"You mean you aren t taking GH3?" 1 asked.
"I got my head kicked in, Herb. I was in a coma for several weeks—and I still don't know exactly where it's all at. Hardly anyone knows about this except my two kids, who were gone at the time, and of course Dick Baker."
It was obvious he would never go bicycling again, and yet knowing he had kept his sense of humor, I said: "If I promise to try to get you GH3, will you promise to wait another two or three weeks before you go bicycling again?"
I knew that Al Sapse would be shocked to learn about Earle Officer's plight, and that he certainly would see to it that one of his best researchers and friends would receive the substance which had saved him before and might again.
My friend and associate Neal Thorpe (who works with me in Los Angeles) and I drove Officer home.
He seemed cheerful enough, even optimistic about consolidating and extending his work with GH3. We exchanged some pleasantries to the effect that the next time I saw him, we d take a spin on his bicycles, since he obviously needed a guardian to look out for rocks in the street, then said good-bye. And that was the last time I saw Earle Officer.
That night I told Dr. Sapse about Officer's predicament and he was dismayed, as I knew he would be. Sapse sent Officer a consultant's fee to help him along, because I had learned he was almost out of funds due to his long illness.
A day or so later Officer called. "Say, Herb, I really want to thank you for helping me. You don't know what it means to me right now."
"I want to see you get well. After all, you've helped other people enough by your work, so it's about time somebody helped you. Just get well, so we can beat some more work out of you."
But a week later Dr. Sapse called me in New York. "I have some tragic news for you. Dr. Officer just died suddenly. The accident was too much for him finally. We couldn t have saved him anyway. His brain--—everythin--was too damaged to make a second comeback."
And so we lost one of our greatest researchers. But as I told Al Sapse, "If it's in my power—and I think it is, I—'ll see to it that his work doesn t die."
Notably significant are the observations of Dr. B. M. Wagner, pathologist at Beekman Downtown Hospital and College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University Hospital. He injected rats with massive doses of GH3 for 90 days, then examined parts of their brains with electron microscopes and other instruments. There were no significant changes in the brain cells or intercellular spaces of GH3-treated rats.
This probably shows that while the drug does act on the brain, it does so without altering the brain's basic structure; in other words, the brain is left intact. Most drugs which produce a noticeable reaction alter in some fashion some of the cells which make up that still mysterious organ we call the brain. This is especially true when massive doses are repeated daily for long periods of time. Dr. Wagner's work seems to confirm that GH3 is safe, corroborating the clinical and laboratory evidence on procaine published during the last seventy years.
If further proof is needed that GH3 is a properly weak, reversible, and competitive inhibitor of MAO, it has been furnished in abundance by Dr. Tom M. Yau of the Ohio Mental Health and Mental Retardadon Center, Cleveland. His findings, as well as others we have reviewed, were presented at symposia held in Miami on aging in 1973—.74. (See Appendix 18.)
Dr. Yau, working with mice, found that not only was GH3 a safe inhibitor of MAO in the brain, but also in the liver and heart. (Dr. Hrachovec also observed GH3 as an effective MAO-inhibitor in the brain, liver and heart.) Yau went a step farther than MacFarlane and Hrachovec, because he demonstrated this inhibitory action in living and dead cells (in vivo and in vitro). Dr. Yau discovered that the level of another essential brain amine, serotonin, was increased by administering GH3 (other MAO-inhibitors do not do this). Also he found out why patients taking GH3 can eat substances such as aged cheese or other fermented foods without harm. The liver, in the presence of GH3, does not destroy a substance called tyramine, which is present in these foods. Patients taking other MAO-inhibitors cannot eat such foods without sending their blood pressure dangerously high. (Strokes and even deaths were frequent before this fact became known.)
Recent unpublished research of Yau's also tends to show that GH3's ability to temporarily inhibit MAO (yet allow it to come back when needed) also applies to serotonin and other important brain amines. These substances are needed in the body (and brain) for vital functions; it is only when they overwhelm the brain, as in aging, that they become dangerous—and in the case of MAO, cause depression.
Yau also has tentative evidence, at least in aging mice, that serotonin is needed for normal sexual activity. The hypothesis is that GH3 improves potency (which it is known to do) in the aging person because it allows serotonin and noradrenaline to coexist while inhibiting harmful—if uninhibited—substances such as MAO.
In short, we come back to our old friend homeostasis, that normalizing action which the body constantly strives to maintain; that action, which if it were constantly maintained every second of our lives, would make man immortal, excluding accidents.
So in my opinion there is laboratory evidence to back up the clinical findings. I do not believe that a substance ever possessed more scientific and observational evidence on which to form a favorable conclusion. Hundreds of drugs have been accepted and approved with only a small fraction of the proof GH3 has amassed—in both safety and efficacy, as the FDA requires.
We do. not imply that research has stopped because of the overwhelming evidence. Research is continuing at an even more rapid pace, and by the time you read this, there will be other equally cogent findings to report. As Dr. Bert M. Zuckerman observed recently:
"The pieces are certainly beginning to fall into place." Indeed they are, from every aspect, including Zuckerman's nematodes.