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Sat Jan 5, 2019, 11:22 PM

Judge: Lawsuit Over Guatemala Syphilis Experiment to Proceed

Source: Agence France-Presse


January 05, 2019 4:16 AM
AFP

WASHINGTON —
A U.S. federal judge in Maryland has ruled that pharmaceutical company Bristol-Myers Squibb, Johns Hopkins University and the Rockefeller Foundation must face a $1 billion lawsuit over their roles in a 1940s medical experiment that saw hundreds of Guatemalans infected with syphilis.

About 775 Guatemalan victims and relatives in 2015 launched a civil suit over the U.S.-led experiment, which aimed to find out if penicillin could be used to prevent sexually transmitted diseases.

They claimed the experiment “subjected them or their family members to medical experiments in Guatemala without their knowledge or consent during the 1940s and 1950s.”

Judge rules in Maryland

U.S. District Judge Theodore Chuang, in a decision Thursday, rejected arguments from the defense that a recent Supreme Court decision protecting foreign companies from U.S. lawsuits over human rights abuses abroad also applied to domestic firms.

Read more: https://www.voanews.com/a/judge-lawsuit-over-guatemala-syphilis-experiment-to-proceed/4730000.html

8 replies, 1237 views

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Arrow 8 replies Author Time Post
Reply Judge: Lawsuit Over Guatemala Syphilis Experiment to Proceed (Original post)
Judi Lynn Jan 5 OP
Honeycombe8 Jan 6 #1
pnwmom Jan 6 #2
Honeycombe8 Jan 6 #5
LittleGirl Jan 6 #3
BumRushDaShow Jan 6 #4
appalachiablue Jan 7 #7
Devil Child Jan 6 #6
Judi Lynn Jan 7 #8

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sun Jan 6, 2019, 12:37 AM

1. If that's true, I can't imagine. Horrible. Evil. Johns Hopkins? nt

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Response to Honeycombe8 (Reply #1)

Sun Jan 6, 2019, 12:59 AM

2. It is true. In 2010 the Obama administration apologized for it.

The researchers in the 40's had been allowed to intentionally infect people.

https://www.voanews.com/a/us-apologizes-for-guatemala-experiment--104167459/127130.html

The United States Friday apologized for a U.S.-funded medical study in the 1940's in which Guatemalans were intentionally infected with sexually-transmitted diseases, or STD's.

U.S. officials have launched two investigations of the case and its implications.

The United States has issued an unusual public apology after disclosure this week that Guatemalan prison and mental institution inmates were intentionally infected with diseases in a U.S. funded medical study in the late 1940's.

A joint statement by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius called the STD study clearly unethical.

The two Cabinet members said while the events occurred more than six decades ago, they are outraged that such "reprehensible" research could have occurred.

SNIP

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #2)

Sun Jan 6, 2019, 12:36 PM

5. +1. I can't imagine Americans doing this to people. What were they thinking? Horrifying. nt

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sun Jan 6, 2019, 08:06 AM

3. I remember reading about that in 2010

just disgusting.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sun Jan 6, 2019, 08:30 AM

4. I remember when there was a big expose published about this

It was something that occurred concurrent with what is more commonly known and talked about - the Tuskegee Experiment, where a similar thing happened. The U.S. government health services unethically experimenting on people of color.

In the case of the Guatemala studies - the people were actually infected with the disease and then "treated" (or not) to test the efficacy of penicillin - the earliest antibiotic used to treat bacterial infections. Penicillin literally became a "miracle" drug - particularly during WW2 for the soldiers.

Here is a heart-breaking article on what happened from a couple years ago (that I recall reading when it was published) - http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/cover_story/2017/02/guatemala_syphilis_experiments_worse_than_tuskegee.html

In the case of Tuskegee, people were told that if they were "ill" or felt they had "bad blood", they could get free tests and medication, however they were not told what they would be tested for or whether they would actually end up with the proper medication -or even have any medication at all because they were to be designated the "control" group and get placebo medicine (often sugar pills). The Tuskegee experiments literally went on for 40 years (from 1932 - 1972) and with the civil rights movement in full gear in the late '60s/early '70s, after much protest, that study was ended in 1972. A settlement was reached and the survivors (and their families) received some financial compensation and lifetime health/medical benefits that continue today (the last experiment victim died about 15 years ago).

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Response to BumRushDaShow (Reply #4)

Mon Jan 7, 2019, 01:00 AM

7. Tuskegee was the first thing I thought. Horrible 'experiments.'

Racism and eugenics is not gone yet.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sun Jan 6, 2019, 01:22 PM

6. Crimes against humanity

One of many perpetrated by US government and business in Central and South America. Thanks for posting Judi Lynn.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Mon Jan 7, 2019, 03:17 AM

8. Bristol-Myers Squibb to face suit

AFP
January 6, 2019

Washington: A federal US judge has ruled pharmaceutical company Bristol-Myers Squibb, Johns Hopkins University and the Rockefeller Foundation must face a $1 billion lawsuit over their roles in a 1940s medical experiment that saw hundreds of Guatemalans infected with syphilis.

Around 774 Guatemalan victims and relatives in 2015 launched a civil suit over the US-led experiment, which aimed to find out if penicillin could be used to prevent sexually transmitted diseases.

They claimed the experiment "subjected them or their family members to medical experiments in Guatemala without their knowledge or consent during the 1940s and 1950s."

US District Judge Theodore Chuang rejected arguments from the defense that a recent Supreme Court decision protecting foreign companies from US lawsuits over human rights abuses abroad also applied to domestic firms.

More:
https://www.thenews.com.pk/print/415165-bristol-myers-squibb-to-face-suit

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