Archive for Tsetse

King Kong don’t have shit on them: Pharmaceutical Companies

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on December 12, 2008 by tomwars

Pharmaceutical companies are worse than Cocaine and Heroine cartels.

A few years back, a friend of mine told me about this disease called African Sleeping Sickness that affects up to 500,000 or so people per year, and kills roughly 50,000. It’s a parasitic disease carried by the Tsetse fly in sub-Saharan Africa. It can be violent as shit since it affects the central nervous system and eventually drives the person crazy. My friend is a virologist and does extensive work on parasites and such as well through the University of Pennsylvania. When telling me the story about African Sleeping Sickness, she told me there’s a cure for it called Eflornithine.

Eflornithine was discovered in the early 90s. It’s been called a wonder drug for sleeping sickness as it revives late stage comatosed sleeping sickness patients. When the parasitic protozoa enters the brain and spinal cord, Eflornithine chases it down and kicks its ass. From the early 90s, until the turn of the millennium, it was known that Eflornithine was a miracle drug for Sleeping Sickness. Yet, pharmaceutical companies almost let the stock run completely dry because it didn’t cure anything they could make money off.

Eflornithine is very expensive to make. It was initially marketed as a cancer treatment; unsuccessfully. If it could’ve been used for cancer, obviously it would have been a huge money maker for whoever mass produced it. The question then begged, how the hell could people make money off it?

Bristol-Myers Squibb and Gillette use Eflornithine in a facial hair removal cream that retails for up to $60. Aventis, the patent holder, donated a small amount to African countries, but small amount is the key word. Eflornithine was kept under wraps for cosmetic purposes, because that’s the only way these rich fucks could make money from it.

So in sum, removing hair from a woman’s lip in NYC and Paris is more important than curing poor Africans.

I wonder if things would’ve been different if it was called British Sleeping Sickness or American Sleeping Sickness.

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