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ORTHOMOLECULAR MEDICINE HALL OF FAME: 2004


Hall of Fame 2004   

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Orthomolecular Medicine Hall of Fame Inductees for 2004

by Andrew W. Saul, Master of Ceremonies and Contributing Editor, Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine.

 

(From the Fairmont Waterfront Centre Hotel, Vancouver, May 1, 2004.)

 

LINUS PAULING, Ph.D.

(1901-1994)

 

I first encountered Linus Pauling's writings in 1973 when I was a student at the Australian National University. In addition to being the author of my organic chemistry textbook, he had also just visited our university. In the uni refectory (that's "campus dining hall" for you Yanks), we privately made fun of Pauling. A physics student and I casually calculated on a serviette (as a Yank, I soon learned that's a paper napkin) that you'd have to do nothing but eat oranges all day if you wanted to consume the amount of vitamin C that Pauling recommended. Two Nobels or not, we thought he had gone a little too far, and we were not alone our sophomoric view.

 

Some years later, now back in America and with two kids in diapers, everything had changed. I was reading all the Pauling papers and books I could get my hands on, such as Vitamin C and the Common Cold and How to Live Longer and Feel Better. And that is how I discovered Abram Hoffer: Linus Pauling kept referring to Dr. Hoffer's clinical megavitamin research, which included studies of cancer patients. Life for me has not been the same since.

 

Linus Pauling wrote, “Do not let either the medical authorities or the politicians mislead you. Find out what the facts are, and make your own decisions about how to live a happy life and how to work for a better world.” (How to Live Longer and Feel Better, p. 274)

 

Not only did Linus Pauling give orthomolecular medicine its name, he placed his considerable reputation on the line to advocate it. Today hundreds of millions of people take vitamin C every single day, and are very literally the better for it, thanks to Linus Pauling.

 

 

EVAN SHUTE, M.D.

(1905-1978)

WILFRID SHUTE, M.D.

(1907-1982)

 

In 1936, Edward VIII abdicated. Franklin Roosevelt was reelected to a second term as US President. The very first issue of Life magazine was published. Jesse Owens won 4 gold medals at the Olympics in Berlin. And that very same year, 1936, the Shutes were already at work employing tocopherol from wheat germ oil to relieve angina symptoms.

 

In 1937, both Young in England and the Shutes in Canada reported success in combating threatened abortion and pregnancy toxemias as well. In 1940, the Shutes were curing atherosclerosis with vitamin E. By 1946, thrombosis, phlebitis, and claudication.

 

Yet when the MDR's (Minimum Daily Requirements) first came out in 1941, there was no mention of vitamin E. It was not until 1959 that vitamin E was recognized by the U.S. government as necessary for human existence, and not until 1968 that any recommendation for vitamin E would be issued.

 

In 1985, Linus Pauling wrote: "The failure of the medical establishment during the last forty years to recognize the value of Vitamin E in controlling heart disease is responsible for a tremendous amount of unnecessary suffering and for many early deaths. The interesting story of the efforts to suppress the Shute discoveries about Vitamin E illustrates the shocking bias of organized medicine against nutritional measures for achieving improved health."

 

Dr. Pauling would most likely have appreciated this comment from a recent Harvard Health Letter: "A consistent body of research indicates that vitamin E may protect people against heart disease. . . The data generally indicate that taking doses ranging from 100 to 800 IU (International Units) per day may lower the risk of heart disease by 30%-40%." (42) Over half a century ago, it was the Shute brothers who first showed that, with even higher doses than those, and with an insistence on the use of natural vitamin E, the results are better still.

 

We welcome the Shute family tonight, who will receive the award in the doctors' names.

 

 

CARL CURT PFEIFFER, M.D., Ph.D.

(1908-1988)

 

As a young man, I noticed that I had little white fingernail spots. Carl Pfeiffer, MD, PhD, had written that they commonly indicate zinc deficiency. Ever since I started taking 30 to 60 mg of zinc a day, they vanished without a trace. That constituted my introduction to Dr. Carl Curt Pfeiffer.

 

Did you know that the first sign of insanity is hair on the knuckles?

 

The second sign is looking for it.

 

If only there were a test that easy, and, due in large part to Dr. Pfeiffer's research, there essentially is. Urinary kryptopyrrole, or pyrolleuria, reliably indicates schizophrenia.

 

Abram Hoffer writes: "Arising from our work in Saskatchewan in 1960, Carl C. Pfeiffer was able to divide schizophrenias into three broad groups: those excreting krytopyrrole, the high histamine group, and the low histamine group. Each group requires a different treatment plan, and when they are followed the results are very good. He recognized a fourth large group, the cerebral allergies. But orthodox psychiatry is not aware of this useful subdivision and looks upon each schizophrenic as a member of the same class-a class for which the only treatment is to be tranquilized.

 

"Dr. C.C. Pfeiffer made his first contribution to the Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine in 1974, contributing 22 papers by the time he died in 1988. He made major contributions to the understanding of trace element and mineral metabolism in the schizophrenias and discussed amino acids in medicine. His contributions were of the greatest value. Carl Pfeiffer was one of the original members of the Committee on Therapy of the American Schizophrenia Association."

 

It is our pleasure tonight to induct Dr. Pfeiffer as one of the first members of the Orthomolecular Medicine Hall of Fame.

 

 

WILLIAM J. McCORMICK, M.D.

(1880-1968)

 

Darwin may have had an easier time with the acceptance of evolution than orthomolecular physicians have had gaining acceptance of the therapeutic use of ascorbic acid. For example, unscientific and unfounded though it be, the myth of the vitamin C-caused kidney stone is rivaled in popularity only by the Loch Ness Monster. A factoid-crazy medical media often passes by the fact that Dr. McCormick demonstrated that vitamin C prevents the formation of kidney stones. He did so in 1946, when he published a paper in Medical Record on the subject.

 

And, over fifty years ago, Dr. McCormick already had identified the value of high doses of intravenous ascorbic acid as a free-radical scavenger. In his 1952 paper, "Ascorbic Acid as a Chemotherapeutic Agent," he stated:

 

"Vitamin C is known to play an essential part in the oxidation-reduction system of tissue respiration and to contribute to the development of antibodies and the neutralization of toxins in the building of natural immunity to infectious diseases. There is a very potent chemotherapeutic action of ascorbic acid when given in massive repeated doses, 500 to 1,000 mg, preferably intravenously or intramuscularly. When thus administered the effect in acute infectious processes is favorably comparable to that of antibiotics, but with the great advantage of complete freedom from toxic or allergic reactions."

 

It was reading this very paper by Dr. McCormick that gave me my start in health care. Though his foundational contributions to orthomolecular medicine have been exceptionally influential, Dr. McCormick remains comparatively uncredited and unknown today. Tonight, we will rectify this. It is my personal pleasure to induct Dr. William J. McCormick into the Orthomolecular Medicine Hall of Fame.

 

 

IRWIN STONE

(1907-1984)

 

I taught college nutrition and clinical nutrition for some years. When you pick up a health or nutrition book and need to know really fast if it is any good or not, just look for these two key words: Stone, and Pauling. If a book has negative things to say about Linus Pauling, you are not likely to find a fair hearing for vitamins. Irwin Stone, the biochemist who first put Dr. Pauling onto vitamin C, is the author of The Healing Factor: Vitamin C Against Disease (1972).

 

"Irwin Stone," writes Robert F. Cathcart, MD, "pointed out the potential of vitamin C in the treatment of many diseases, the inability of humans to synthesize ascorbate, and the resultant condition hypoascorbemia. . . Stone has described the genetic defect whereby the higher primates lost the ability to synthesize ascorbate. This defect is caused by a mutated defective gene for the liver enzyme, L-gulonolactone oxidase."

 

And Irwin Stone published on this in 1966.

 

Linus Pauling cites Stone thirteen times in his landmark How to Live Longer and Feel Better (1986), a recommendation if there ever was one. There is no doubt whatsoever that Dr. Pauling himself would wholeheartedly approve of the induction tonight of Irwin Stone into the Orthomolecular Medicine Hall of Fame.

 

 

WILLIAM KAUFMAN, M.D, Ph.D.

(1910-2000)

 

The authors of a 1996 clinical trial of niacinamide for osteoarthritis could have omitted the words “pilot study” from their title. Dr. William Kaufman had already published, 47 years earlier, his meticulous case notes for hundreds of patients, along with specific niacinamide dosage information applicable to both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

 

Yes, the world was still deep in the Great Depression when William Kaufman, MD, PhD had already begun treating joint dysfunction with two to four grams of niacinamide daily.

 

Mrs. Kaufman sent me a tape recording of a 1978 radio program on which Dr. Kaufman told of how "I had one patient who was so severely arthritic that I could not bend his elbows enough to measure his blood pressure.  He was one of my first patients. I gave him niacinamide for a week in divided doses, and then he could bend his arm.  I took him off it and gave him a look-alike medicine (placebo).  In a week he was back where he was before: his joints were stiff again.

 

"I arrived at my (megavitamin B-3 dosage) schedule by actually seeing the response of patients with varying degrees of arthritis. One cannot give a single large dose and get any really favorable results in arthritis... It is necessary to divide the doses so that the blood levels of niacinamide would be fairly uniform throughout the waking day."

 

Dr. Kaufman described how when niacinamide administration was divided into 10 doses per day, in one to three months, patients could now get out of their chair, or bed.  "If continued, they would be able comb their hair and be able to walk upstairs, so they would no longer be prisoners of the house. By the end of about three years treatment, they would be fully ambulatory, and this was even in the older age groups."

 

One of the pleasures of my life has been to get to know Dr. William Kaufman through my correspondence with his wife, Charlotte. She is home in Winston Salem North Carolina, but with the full and satisfying knowledge that her beloved husband is being honored here tonight.

 

 

ALAN COTT, M.D.

(1910-1993)

 

Paperback bestsellers can change lives. For many people, their introduction to therapeutic fasting came by way of Alan Cott's Fasting: the Ultimate Diet and Fasting as a Way of Life. When I first tried fasting, I noticed that it was the best I'd ever felt while sick.

 

Dr. Cott quotes the experiences of some famous fasters, such as Upton Sinclair. After fasting for seven days, Sinclair wrote, "I have been about and busy every minute of the day and until late at night. I have walked miles every day and have felt no weakness to speak of. I shall continue the fast until I feel hungry." He did so, and after 12 days concluded: "The fast is not an ordeal, it is a rest." (10) The Pulitzer Prize winner, who fasted frequently, lived to be 90.

 

Abram Hoffer has written, "Dr. Allan Cott first reported in JOM in 1967. By 1984 he had published 12 papers dealing with children, adults, fasting treatment, the use of pyridoxine and so on. Allan Cott was one of the original members of the Committee on Therapy of the American Schizophrenia Association. He has a school for severely disturbed children in Birmingham named after him."

 

We are also pleased to honor Dr. Alan Cott tonight, as we include him among the very first ten inductees of the Orthomolecular Hall of Fame.

 

 

ROGER J. WILLIAMS, Ph.D.

(1893-1988)

She was a very nice lady, the wife of a surgeon, and an incurable alcoholic. Betty, aged 56, had been into and out of every rehab facility you can name. It seemed strange at first as she sat there in front of me, gracious and poised, telling me all about her bottomless misery due to her drinking. Most of my experience with alcoholics came from volunteering at a downtown Rochester, NY soup kitchen. There the winos fit the stereotype much better: an unshaven, shabby man slurping from a bottle of blackberry brandy in a paper bag.

 

"Is there anything you can do for me?" Betty asked.

 

"Maybe," I said. Then the little cartoon angel whispered in my other ear. Roger J. Williams!

 

 "Here we go," I said. "You might want to write this down. Thousands of milligrams of vitamin C a day, in divided doses; all the B-vitamins, especially thiamin, in a B-complex supplement, five times a day; and about three grams of L-glutamine. This, a general good diet, with an avoidance of sugar, is essentially it. Can you do it?"

 

Betty smiled. "The real question is, will I do it, isn't it?"

 

Some weeks later I got an encouraging phone call from Betty.

 

"Things are going great," she said. "Haven't had a drink since the day I saw you."

 

Months passed. A Christmas card from Betty: still clean and sober.

 

Next year, another Christmas card told of her continued success. "I'm going back to school," she wrote. Nice! Suddenly the bottom fell right out of my happy mood: "I've been able to have a drink or two now and again," Betty added. "But I stop when I choose, and do not want any more than that. I'm still taking all the vitamins. Thank you again!"

 

 Once more, my understanding of alcoholism was overturned. Professional dogma tells us that "once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic." I've taught alcohol and substance abuse classes at the college level as part of a certified alcohol counselor (CAC) training program. I know the drill, and Betty's experience did not fit well. She should not drink at all! Never! Yet here she was, able to have a drink, just like a normal person. She could choose to have a drink, and stop. No compulsion, no addiction. Betty wasn't just coping better; she wasn't just recovering. Betty was cured.

 

You know, when someone becomes unconscious from ethanol, they may have had just enough to pass out, or they may have had more than enough to die. One can not afford to take a chance and see if they sleep it off, or never wake. We also can not afford not to use vitamin therapy.

 

It is an honor to induct the scientist who, among many other achievements, proclaimed life-restoring vitamin therapy for alcoholism, over 50 years ago: Professor Roger J. Williams.

 

HUMPHRY OSMOND, M.D.

(1917-2004)

Dr. Humphry Osmond’s remarkable medical career included decades of distinguished psychiatric practice and a prodigious output of writing and research. He is widely recognized as a pioneer investigator into the chemistry of consciousness. Along with Dr. John Smythies, Dr. Osmond developed the theory that schizophrenics suffer due to endogenous production of an adrenalin-based hallucinogen. This led to the Hoffer-Osmond Adrenochrome Hypothesis in the early 1950’s, the very origin of orthomolecular medicine. The popular press may today remember Dr. Humphry Osmond for coining the term "psychedelic," but countless thousands of grateful patients will remember him as the co-discoverer of niacin therapy for schizophrenia.

 

There is only one person here tonight uniquely best qualified to honor the late Dr. Humphry Osmond, and that would be his colleague and friend for over 50 years, Dr. Abram Hoffer.

 

Andrew Saul is the author of the books FIRE YOUR DOCTOR! How to be Independently Healthy (reader reviews at http://www.doctoryourself.com/review.html ) and DOCTOR YOURSELF: Natural Healing that Works. (reviewed at http://www.doctoryourself.com/saulbooks.html )

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Andrew W. Saul

 


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