… A spectacularly promising medicine, hydrazine sulfate had shown good results in trials at Harbor/UCLA hospital and in Russia. The National Cancer Institute (NCI) felt obligated to test the drug. But there was a catch.
The drug’s discoverer, Dr. Joseph Gold, had found that HS could provoke very dangerous effects if patients were taking other drugs, especially tranquilizers. Several warnings were given to NCI before it began its test. The warnings were explicit. Patients could die if they were taking tranquilizers.
It turned out that none of the NCI patients were warned about this. It turned out that 94% of those patients were in fact on tranquilizers.
Barry Tice, an investigator for the US General Accounting Office (GAO), looked into the NCI trial of hydrazine sulfate after it was over. He called Dr. Gold and told him he had found a “smoking gun.” There was an internal NCI memo which showed that NCI was well aware of the problems involved in the drug combinations.
But the GAO did not back up its own investigator. The final GAO report on the NCI clinical trials of hydrazine sulfate simply accused NCI of sloppy bookkeeping.
In the June 1995 issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology, a letter from the NCI was published. The letter stated that NCI had omitted mentioning, in its own published account of its cancer study, that 94% of the patients had been on tranquilizers. But, because this letter did NOT mention how dangerous that situation was, it looked like NCI was simply admitting to a technical and unimportant mistake. A clerical error.
So what did happen to the patients in the NCI hydrazine sulfate study?
The results have been suppressed. But NCI concluded that hydrazine sulfate was ineffective.
The drug, hydrazine sulfate, a competitor for chemotherapy dollars, was eliminated. Hydrazine sulfate is a cheap, widely available, unpatentable substance. No profit there. …