Should the Geiers be granted a patent on Lupron?

22 May

As many in the autism community will tell you, drug patents are big money. Usually this is used by people claiming, “he is not trustworthy–he makes a lot of money off of drug patents”. Funny how those claims aren’t applied to the father-son team of Mark and David Geier, who have applied for a patent for their method of “treating” people with autism using a very strong drug that dramatically reduces the levels of the hormone testosterone in the body.

This “protocol” has been called into question in recent articles in the Chicago Tribune, here and here. These stories have been blogged on LBRB by Kev and myself.

As an aside, at the time of writing, one of the Tribune articles is #5 on the Tribune’s “most viewed” list, and #1 on the most emailed list.

The Geiers originally looked to Lupron with the justification that somehow testosterone was binding with mercury in the brains of people with autism. This made it difficult or impossible for chelating agents to remove the mercury. Since, in the world of Mark and David Geier, mercury is at the root of autism, it made sense to get rid of the testosterone in order to treat the mercury poisoning in order to improve or recover the autistic person.

Sound convoluted and implausible? You are right.

First off, autism isn’t mercury poisoning. Geez, that’s one dead horse that will never be given a rest.

Second, Lupron shuts down production of testosterone. It does not remove testosterone from the system. Who is to say that reducing the amount of testosterone in the system would break up the supposed “crystalline sheets” of mercury/testosterone compound that the Geiers believe are in the brains of autistics?

Third, even the Geiers don’t buy into the mercury/testosterone connection (at least in public). Read the Tribune stories. All the discussions are about reducing the amount of testosterone in the body.

The Geier’s patent application, US27254314A1, has 109 claims (a lot!). What is claim #1 (the most important claim in any patent)?

1. A method of lowering the level of mercury in a subject suffering from mercury toxicity, the method comprising the steps of:
a) administering to said subject a pharmaceutically effective amount of at least one luteinizing hormone releasing hormone composition; and

b) repeating step a) as necessary to lower the level of mercury in said subject.

I.e. they are patenting using Lupron (and similar compounds) to help remove mercury from people.

If they aren’t actually reducing mercury, or treating people with “mercury toxicity” (isn’t the real term intoxication?), why should this be granted?

The Geiers may state that they see behavioral differences in their patients. Well….they are reducing their testosterone levels to near zero. Of course they will see behavior differences. But, are they, as they claimed, reducing the mercury levels in their patients? If you read the article, you will see that mercury really isn’t discussed. It is all about reducing testosterone levels.

How does the Reverend Lisa Sykes, co-author with the Geiers on papers, and parent of probably the Geier’s most well known patient have to say? In the comments on the Tribune website, she states:

As the parent of the first child to be treated by Dr. Geier for high testosterone, a condition caused by cinically diagnosed mercury-poisoning from the theraputic use of vaccines and RhoD, I can only wait for the day the press gets it right.

Yep. The story has changed. The good Rev. Sykes, who used to claim that the idea behind lupron was to get the mercury out, now claims that mercury causes high testosterone levels. Well, at least they are consistent in always making mercury and vaccines the villan.

So, again, I pose the question: if Lupron isn’t working by helping to remove mercury, should the patent be granted to the Geiers? From where I sit, the answer seems to be a clear, “No”.

Of course, a second question is “does it have any benefit for people with autism”? The Geiers recruited Dr. Mayer Eisenstein to “treat” people with autism using Lupron in the Chicago area. After a few months of being part of the Geier “franchise”, what does Dr. Eisenstien have to say?

“It’s highly unlikely that we’re going to be part of the autism program much longer,” Eisenstein said. “I’m not pleased enough with it. It’s not where I want to put my energy.”

I just don’t see this patent as being granted.

2 Responses to “Should the Geiers be granted a patent on Lupron?”

  1. daedalus2u May 22, 2009 at 12:37 #

    As an inventor, I know something about patent law.

    The patent examination process does not examin a patent for truthfulness, correctness or actual utility (except the narrow scope of inventions claiming perpetual motion where a demonstration that it works is required (in the US at least). The only thing the patent office is supposed to look at is novelty. Is the claimed invention new, and does it

    The only purpose behind trying to get a patent is a business reason because all an issued patent allows you to do is exclude others from making, using or selling the patented invention. In the case of something useless (as in using lupron to treat mercury poisoning) and harmful, keeping other people from making, using or selling the lupron treatment is something with no business utility.

    The marketplace will keep people from using lupron in this way because it doesn’t work and is actually harmful. A patent on using lupron to treat mercury poisoning is of zero value.

    The patent may grant, but all that shows is that no one discribed using lupron before in this way. Well duh, of course no one thought of this before because it is so badly wrong that anyone who knows anything about endocrinology or mercury, or physiology, or autism, or really anything would never bother spending anything on something so obviously wrong.

    (COI disclosure: I have filed for patents on using topical ammonia oxidizing bacteria to increase NO levels and so treat ASDs and other things)

  2. Sullivan May 23, 2009 at 02:42 #

    daedalus2u,

    thanks for your input. Patents don’t have to be correct, you are certainly correct. An invention must be novel (not obvious). But, there must be some semblance of teaching something novel to one skilled in the art. The Geier patent does not meet this criteria–there is no evidence that Lupron helps reduce mercury in the body and there is no evidence that any of the behavioral changes are due to mercury rather than just plain hormonal changes.

    But, as you note, since there is no approval of this drug for treating mercury levels, even a granted patent would have zero value. The Geiers are treating “precocious puberty”.

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