CASE CLOSED … what really happened in the 2001 anthrax attacks?

* Minutes of Meeting Produced Under FOIA To DXer Today Report On Experiment Dr. Ivins Was Conducting On Nights The DOJ Speculated, Without Basis, That He Was Making a Dried Powder And DOJ Claimed, Without Basis, That Dr. Ivins Had No Reason To Be In Lab

Posted by Lew Weinstein on August 19, 2011

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IT WASN'T IVINS ... and the FBI must by now know that they drove the wrong man to suicide

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6 Responses to “* Minutes of Meeting Produced Under FOIA To DXer Today Report On Experiment Dr. Ivins Was Conducting On Nights The DOJ Speculated, Without Basis, That He Was Making a Dried Powder And DOJ Claimed, Without Basis, That Dr. Ivins Had No Reason To Be In Lab”

  1. DXer said

    On Friday, October 5, 2001, Dr. Ivins explained that 3 days after a challenge with Ames 12 rabbits had died.

    From: Ivins, Bruce E Dr USAMRIID
    To:
    Subject: Stabilizer in a new rPA vaccine
    Date: Friday, October 05, 2001 10:52:45 AM
    The data we are getting from our with formaldehyde/without formaldehyde experiment in rabbits
    is giving us VERY strong evidence that we should incorporate a stabilizer in with rPA and Alhydrogel.
    weren’t some FDA-acceptable stabilizers going to be identified? If there some out there,
    maybe we should start thinking about them now.
    Basically what we have as far as the experiment:
    1) Five years ago rPA/Alhydrogel/PBS vaccine was made with or without 0.02% formaldehyde (the
    level that’s in AVA) and stored at 4C. With these vaccines we immunized groups of rabbits as follows
    (0.5 ml per intramuscular dose):
    Group A – 24 rabbits (12 males, 12 females) get PA (50 ug)/Alhydrogel (0.5 mg)/PBS/0.02%
    formaldehyde at 0 weeks. Challenge (subcutaneous) at 6 weeks with about 100 LD50 Ames spores.
    Group B – 24 rabbits (12 males, 12 females) get PA (50 ug)/Alhydrogel (0.5 mg)/PBS/No
    formaldehyde at 0 weeks. Challenge (subcutaneous) at 6 weeks with about 100 LD50 Ames spores.
    Group C – 4 rabbits (2 males, 2 females) get PBS/Alhydrogel (0.5 mg) at 0 weeks. Challenge
    (subcutaneous) at 6 weeks with about 100 LD50 Ames spores.
    2) Results so far, 3 days after challenge:
    Group Survived/Total
    A – Vaccine plus formaldehyde 24/24 (no deaths)
    B – Vaccine minus formaldehyde 16/24 (8 deaths)
    C – Controls 0/4 (4 deaths)
    Note: We originally studied the effect of formaldehyde on rPA vaccine potency/stability in guinea
    pigs. The cumulative data indicated that stability/potency was enhanced by the presence of
    formaldehyde.
    – Bruce

  2. DXer said

    GAO:

    USAMRIID will be releasing an inventory list of what was taken or provided to the FBI. (They are working the redactions).

    But, as a cross-check, you should make sure that the FBI gave you everything that they got from USAMRIID.

  3. DXer said

    Here is an October 2001 Battelle report on inhalation lethal dose in rhesus monkeys. Lots more to come. (My FOIA request was for documents from Bruce Ivins office from September and October 2001).

    https://mrmc-www.army.mil/content/foia_reading_room/Final%20Report/20011001_Ivins%20final_report_part_1%20a.pdf

    https://mrmc-www.army.mil/content/foia_reading_room/Final%20Report/20011001_Ivins%20final_report_part_2.pdf

    https://mrmc-www.army.mil/content/foia_reading_room/Final%20Report/20011001_Ivins%20final_report_part_3_pg_3-11.pdf

    https://mrmc-www.army.mil/content/foia_reading_room/Final%20Report/20011001_Ivins%20Final_Report_pg_20-24.pdf

    • DXer said

      With respect to the challenge that Battelle was using in June 2001, that I understand to have been Ames, it appears that it was “weaponized”, to borrow the report’s phrase. The typos are mine. This page is found in part 3 of the segments uploaded.

      “Back ground and Non-technical Synopsis: Bacillus anthracis, the etiologic agent of
      Anthrax, is a gram-positive, rod shaped, aerobic and/or facultative anaerobic, sporefonning
      bacterium that can cause human disease via the gastrointestinal, cutaneous, or
      inhalation routes with different clinical manifestations of disease with pulmonary being
      the most lethal. The incubation period usually varies from 12 hours to 5 days,
      depending upon the dose received. The onset can be longer following inhalation
      exposure, and some reports suggest a delayed onset of several weeks in low dose
      exposure or following removal of therapeutic intervention. In inhalation anthrax, the
      initial clinical signs and symptoms are nonspecific and may include malaise, headache,
      fever, nausea, and vomiting. These are followed by a sudden onset of respiratory
      distress with dyspnea, stridor, cyanosis and chest pain and ~the onset of re’spiratory
      distress is followed by shock and death, with close to 100% mortality.
      Anthrax is considered a serious biological terrorist and military threat due to the highly
      lethal effects by the inhalation route (approaching 100 percent lethality) and the
      stability of the B. anthracis spore. But there are significant limitations in the data used
      to generate the current accepted human inhalation dose of between and
      spores. There is virtually no inhalation exposure data in humans to draw on, and the
      animal data that derives the estimate are difficult to discern. Much of the supporting
      data used for the human estimate is not even inhalation data, and much of it suffers
      from a lack of identification of the B. anthracis strain used, and a variety of and
      inconsistency in the animal models. To prpperly assess the human dose, which is very
      important for threat assessment and application of countermeasures before and during
      an emergency, additional research needs to be undertaken using an animal model
      (rhesus monkey) accepted to be most reminiscent of humans and with B anthracis
      strains that are known to be highly lethal andlor known to have been weaponized in
      offensive programs. There are many strains of B. anthracis, and the weaponized strains
      are expected to be the most lethal. An important component of the study is the
      comparison of highly lethal strains to be used. A current strain commonly used in
      medical countermeasure research in the Department of Defense is assumed to be as
      lethal as known weaponized strains. But., the strain commonly used (Ames) does not
      have a well established (published) LCtso or IDso, and mown weaponized strains have
      not been tested in recent U.S. Government laboratories or have not been tested in over
      50 years.

      The purpose of this study is to establish an estimate of the median lethal aerosol
      concentration (LCtso) in the rhesus monkeys using three strains of B. anthracis. This
      study is a follow-on to work using the rabbit model, will provide baseline information
      to more accurately extrapolate to human lethal doses, and generate important
      information for national defense.

      ***

      Duplication of Previous Research

      A thorough database literature search revealed limited information on inhalation LCtso
      determinations of anthrax in non-human primates. The previous studies involved work
      primarily done in the 1990s and with only one of the strains of interest and few animals
      that generated LCtsos with large confidence intervals. Other studies did not include
      confidence intervals, or did not directly determine LCtsoS. The LCtso has been
      established in only one of the strains to be tested and has not been established for the
      other two strains. These studies will be a direct comparison of three strains, of which
      the two have been “weaponized.” In addition, discussion with an author of previous

      In addition, discussion with an author of previous anthrax work on the publication by et al 1998
      indicated a degree of concern in the accuracy of the previous data, and this work will provide confirmation of that data.

      • DXer said

        Here the term “weaponized”, I believe, is being used to mean “known or suspected to have been used as threats.”

        “The proposed study determined the LD5o following inhalation exposure in the rhesus monkey model. ‘ The LD5o has been well established in one of the strains tested, while the LDso had not been established for the other three strains. These studies were a direct comparison of the four strains, of which two strains were used formerly for weaponization. A third has recently been used as a terrorist weapon for distribution through the U.S. mail system and, to date, is responsible for four human deaths. This study generated scientific information important to the national defense to estimate the potential threat of human inhalation exposure to “weaponized” strains of B. anthraces.”

  4. DXer said

    Here are some lab notes from the nights in question. The FBI is withholding numerous additional lab notebook pages from September and October 2001. The GAO should obtain them and cause them to be uploaded.

    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/07/20/the-pulitzer-may-go-to-the-definitive-write-up-on-the-issue-of-what-dr-ivins-was-doing-on-the-nights-in-september-and-early-october-2001-that-the-department-of-justice-speculated-without-any-basis/

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