RFK and Boyd Haley: Oh How They Fall

Here's the problem with this: other than anti-vaccine sites and places like Mercola's site, I can't really find any reputable site noting that Boyd is a "leading international expert on mercury toxicity." He has numerous articles listed at his university's website, three of which deal with mercury. That's it. He wrote three articles that his university wants attached to it that deal with mercury, and they all deal with Alzheimer's. How does that make him an expert, and an international one, on mercury toxicity?

PubMed lists four articles for him that do deal with autism, but interestingly enough, those aren't listed on his university site. And even more interesting is coauthor Mark "not a scientist" Blaxill (to borrow from another blogger) on two of them. 

Note that he's not done anything since 2006. It appears his original website, www.alcorp.com, was up through 2008, and he may have been busy with those projects before getting sidetracked with selling mining chelator to gullible moms to put on their children's breakfast foods. CTI's still got a website, still got a how to order page up. Makes you wonder if it's a failure to remove the page or if he's back to selling it again quietly. And if he truly is back to selling it again, how long it will take to get him shut back down. The website is, however, stripped down compared to what it was before the  FDA cracked down.

Doing web searches of Boyd Haley to ascertain whether mainstream scientists, his peers, consider him to be a "leading international expert" provides page after page of woo or anti-vaccine sites singing the man's praises, leading to that whole post I did a while back on knowing where to file folks. I did come across an interesting site that details Boyd Haley's lack of expertise called The Millenium Project*:

"At a meeting in June 2004 of the political group Doctors for Disaster Preparedness, Dr Haley used the expression "mad child disease" to refer to autism and attention deficit disorder, and repeated his nonsensical claims that these disorders are caused by mercury. When he was challenged to apologise for this disgusting use of language he refused and instead retrospectively invented an acronym. He claims that what he really said was not "mad child disease" but "M.A.D. child disease", which just happens to sound the same when you say it. "M.A.D." stands for "Mercury Acquired Disease of children". Yeah, right. So when you expand it out, what he was really saying was "mercury acquired disease of children child disease". Did I already say "Yeah, right"? Does Dr Haley get money out of the bank by putting his personal PIN number into an automatic ATM machine? The anti-amalgamists and anti-vaccination liars have leapt to his defence, of course, and have been saying that he has explained himself perfectly. What he has explained is that he will stop at no level of offensiveness and no amount of lying to promote his idiotic pseudoscientific ideas." (bolding mine)

The website, The Millenium Project, provides some tantalizing glimpses at how Haley's got a long history trying to sell tests for things like detecting ALS and for "oral toxins." Back in 2005, he was selling a $500 test for ALS; at the same time, he also had a test for "For detection of Halitosis Linked Toxins." 

The University of Kentucky's Odyssey in 2003 showcased Haley's company before it had branched out to Halitosis and ALS tests:

One of the dentists was so convinced of the validity of the link between oral infection and serious disease that soon after the meeting she sent them some patients' samples for analysis. She also sent Haley and Pendergrass a check for $2,600."We made the decision then and there," Pendergrass says. "I'd become a full-time entrepreneur and Boyd would remain a 'lab rat,' and we'd try to make this thing work as a for-profit business."
So Haley literally picked up the pieces in his old lab in ASTeCC and started over. "This was in '97," Haley explains. "I put in 10 grand out of my pocket into what we decided to call Affinity Labeling Technologies (ALT), and initially we focused on making the probes that we knew sold best."
But ALT quickly outgrew the lab space as the orders for testing kits and analyses poured in. In less than three years ALT purchased a home—an office building near campus, where Haley and Pendergrass, along with their wives, put aside their analytical lab skills for much more basic skills: painting, dry-walling, installing cabinets and countertops, and transforming the concrete block shell into a working biomedical lab with offices.
ALT has incrementally increased its sales in each of the years since, without the benefit of any publicity or marketing efforts, except the launching of its Web site (www.altcorp.com) by Dr. Pendergrass, Haley says. The company now has five employees: Pendergrass, who serves as president; Dr. Anjan Bhattacharyya, radiochemicals laboratory director; a medical technician, a business manager, and a staff member. "I don't go there at all— I'm only the scientific advisor," Haley says.
 The original website for Haley's company, www.altorp.com, is no longer in use. I was able to find its new website, http://www.altbioscience.com/company_profile.html, which does not appear to be selling the tests it was in 2005. Here's what it has to say about ALS and Alzheimer's:
"ALT BioScience continues to support research efforts on a broad neurodegenerative biomarker in various fluids for future diagnostic platforms and formats across multiple disease states. GS that is released from the brain and liver tissue may be detected in various bodily fluids and is currently being evaluated. The development of the technology has been supported by NIH grants for over 25 years and is based on the detection of an enzyme (glutamine synthetase or GS) that is released from the brain during the progression of Alzheimer's Disease (AD), Lou Gehrig's disease (ALS) and possibly other neurological diseases. The technology allows for detection of enzyme and protein differences found in serum and cerebrospinal fluid of normal versus diseased subjects. The detection of GS was reported as a potential diagnostic test for AD and published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Science (PNAS)."
Haley's name doesn't appear on the website, though, although searches on the company show that he was vice president. And nothing really appears to be for sale yet on the site. But it makes you wonder what made Haley branch off from this and over to the mining chelator for autistic kids to munch on?

And, we have to wonder, just how far has RFK Jr. fallen that this is what he's reduced to, video interviewing a man who pushed mining chelator onto desperate parents in a misguided attempt to cure their kids of autism?

*I am facebook friends with Peter Bowditch, who appears to be the author of this page on Haley at the Millenium Project; I found this page on my own, and I had no previous knowledge that Peter had written this.


melbo said...

No brilliant insights from me -just bravo!

KWombles said...

Thanks. :-)