In February this year, Dr. Maduike Eziebe and his team at the Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike, Abia State, where he is Professor of Veterinary Medicine and Clinical Virology hit the headlines; his university had publicly announced a cure for HIV/AIDS, pioneered by him. The news immediately went viral on social media, which broke the news at first.
Since then he has been bombarded by invitations to attend international scientific conferences and publish in peer review journals.
In this interview with Thisage, he explains how he has been managing the limelight and the immediate and long-term benefits to the scientific world, human health and Nigeria of the new medicine
Ques: This year has been very busy for you since your university announced the cure for HIV/AIDS undertaken by your team, in February. You have a confab in Australia in July and another in Austria in October. How do you view these invitations?
Ans: I am also expected to have been in Canada from the 28/7/17 to 30th. I could not go for lack of funding or may be, God did not want me to go. Implication of these invitations is that organizers of these conferences who are world class scientists have come to agree that God has sent cure for what we thought could not be cured, through an African, a Nigerian.
Ques: Would you say the scientific world that claims there is no cure for AIDs is opening up to a new reality with these invitations?
Ans: We, Nigerian scientists, are part of the scientific world. All of us, from Europe, America, Asia, Australia and Africa were rattled by HIV/AIDS but Jehova had always known the solution. Because He is a jealous god, at His own time He chose to reveal the cure through Africa. It is God`s own doing. So, it is marvelous in our eyes.
Ques: Lets put it this way. The scientific world says there is no cure for HIV/AIDS and here you are, a scientist laying claim to a cure. How do you reconcile this seeming contradiction?
Ans: There is no contradiction. We, the scientific world had no cure for HIV/AIDS but now God has shown us the cure.
HIV, as a virus, is small enough that it gets to cells that most medicines do not reach and compositions of viruses is similar to compositions of animal cells, including human cells.
For their small sizes viruses get to parts of the body where medicines that inhibit viruses cannot, on their own alone, completely cure viral infections. Such medicines do their bit while immunity, lymphocytes, completes the cure. Also, medicines that work by inhibiting biochemistry of viruses are not good to be used for a long time, because they also have some adverse effects on human cells.
Unfortunately HIV infects many cells and divides very fast. So, it cannot be cured in a short time. Added to this, it attacks and destroys the immune cells, lymphocytes.
So, if medicines that work by physical effects, which are good for prolonged treatments, were used there would not be enough immunity to complement their effects. If medicines that work by biochemical effects are used for the prolonged treatment they cause toxicity on patients.
At this time, God opened our eyes to things the whole world had known for a long time. -That Aluminum-magnesium silicate (AMS) is made of particles that are only 0.96 nm while HIV is at least 110 nm.
The small particles of AMS have positive electrical charges on their edges while their surfaces are negatively charged. HIV is positively charged while HIV-infected cells and other infected cells are negatively charged. Silicates enhance immunity.
So, synergy between ability of AMS to use opposite charges of its particles to inhibit HIV/destroy infected cells and enhanced immunity cures HIV/AIDS.
The only drawback was that AMS is not absorbable. It does not get into the blood stream, but the scientific world had always known that by a principle called active transport, simple sugars can convey charged molecules across mucous membranes, into blood. So, we are using Dextrose monohydrate, Glucose, to transport the AMS particles into blood. Blood carries them to all organs and tissues. So, we, the scientific world, have not contradicted ourselves. We believed that God would one day show us the cure. That is why we did not give up. We have been researching for cure. God has, now, done it. Praise the Lord.
Ques: Or does it mean that this is not a matter for the test-tube and theory but practical, common sense because a growing number of cures such as yours are coming up regularly now?
Ans: That is what science is all about. Nigeria has told the world their mistake. The mistake is that molecules of medicines they were using for HIV are too big. HIV requires Nanoparticles, extremely small particles.
Many people are now trying that Nigerian principle of using Nanoparticles. They do not need to use same medicine we invented. What they need from us is the principle, which we have told them. My only regret is that the Nigerian Government is wasting time in claiming the blessing God has given to us. We need to make it clear that the idea of using Nano-medicines that work by physical effects to cure HIV/AIDS came from God through Nigeria. That is one of the things I will like to be remembered for.
Ques: Unorthodox bodies have announced many of such cures. Don’t you think the scientific establishment and traditional methods should meet to find cure for the disease?
Ans: The number of invitations to us to come to teach at the world level shows we are different from those other people who make claims. We are discussing science, how the cure is achieved while those other people just claim they can cure without saying how their medicines work. Some do not even say active ingredients of their medicines. They say they use herbs without saying names of the herbs and medicinal ingredients in them.
Ques: What really causes HIV/AIDS and what are the simple health measures people should take?
Ans: HIV/AIDS is hematological (blood) defect that results from infection of an RNA virus, called Human immune deficiency virus which is a mutant (transformed form) of a virus of primates (Monkeys, Chimpanzees etc) called Simian immune deficiency virus (SIV).
There is another RNA virus that causes same hematological abnormalities in chickens called Infectious bursa disease virus (IBDV).
So, you can see that HIV came from animals and it is through our years of research with animals, as veterinary doctors that we have now come up with the cure. Veterinarians are in a better position than human doctors when it comes to researching for new treatments and for vaccines. This is because such researches require experimental infections with the virus and human beings cannot be used for experimental infections.
I urge veterinarians, all over the world, to do more research with SIV and IBDV so that we can improve on the HIV/AIDS cure.
I do not believe vaccine is possible for an infection that destroys lymphocytes (same cells expected to produce immunity in response to vaccines). We should search for how to shorten duration of the treatment before cure.
Current methods of prevention, such as safe sex practices and testing of blood before transfusion, should be continued.
The Government of Nigeria should commercialize the cure so that infected people, all over the world could be cured. That way, rate of new infections would reduce. The disease could eventually be eradicated.
Ques: You had a meeting with Health Ministry officials, who initially refuted your claims publicly. What was the outcome and where is the meeting leading you and your team now?
Ans: Since the meeting in May, I have not been communicated by the panel. I am also told that the Minister of Health, Prof. Adewole said last week, that he too has not received any report from the panel.
I hope since the minister has voiced openly that they should hurry up and submit their report, they would do so soon. Let me also use this opportunity to call on my good friend, Prof. Salako who is chairman of the panel to make their report available to the Minister and to the Nigerian public so that I may get some support from the government.
At present I am being supported by my university and by Abia State government but this is a global issue. It also involves international politics. I need support of federal government and the Minister cannot offer such support if the panel continues to delay their report.
Ques: You said you patented the drug in 2014, months before the public announcement in 2017. Did you by-pass the Ministry to register the drug?
Ans: The President and Commander in Chief himself grant Patents, not by the Minister. An applicant submits all the claims about what the medicine is and how it works, the government investigates the claims before the patent could be granted. I submitted my application in 2012, it took two years before the government granted the patent.
Ques: Has the public and patients been coming to you and have you been able to meet their demands?
Ans: People are coming every day. At a point I could not cope because we are giving the medicine, free, to doctors to treat their patients. Then, Abia state Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu called me and said I should continue, that he will support me. He has already given me money to pay for publication of my book on the invention. The book will be in circulation any moment from now.
My Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Francis Ogbonnaya Otunta has also supported me, financially. I cannot thank them enough and I am also using this medium to thank them again.
From the Doctors` reports CD4-counts of treated patients are increasing. Some of them have become HIV-negative by both antibody and antigen tests.
Ques: How can Nigeria benefit from this feat of your team?
Ans: Apart from its antiviral effects the medicine is also used to improve effects of other medicines. So, pharmaceutical companies would need it to reduce concentrations of active drugs in their formulations and such reductions make the medicines work better.
It is also a potential cure for cancer because cancer cells, like HIV-infected cells, have negative electrical charges. If Nigeria commercializes a product, which can cure HIV, cure other viral diseases (including Ebola and Bird flu) and cancer and companies also buy the product to improve both effects of their medicines and their profit-margins, that would be a great benefit to the economy.
Do not forget that the Medicinal synthetic Aluminum-magnesium silicate, we are using is got from reaction of Aluminum silicate (Kaolin) and Magnesium silicate which are abundant in the country.
The invention will assist in the diversification of the Nigerian economy. It is also a big pride to Nigeria and Africa that God chose to reveal solution for HIV/AIDS through us. We should give Him all the glory for the great thing He has done.