Darkness in El Dorado - Archived Document
Anthropological Niche of Douglas W. Hume
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Internet Source: ANTHRO-L mailing list, October 26, 2000
Source URL: none


In response to:

Tierney, Patrick; "The Fierce Anthropologist"; *The New Yorker*; 9 October 2000, 50-61

Samuel L. Katz, M.D., of Duke University Medical Center writes in the 30 October 2000 issue of *The New Yorker* (Page 12):

"Patrick Tierney's account of the possible connection between measles vaccinations and measles outbreakes merits comment.

The Edmonston-B vacine, which I helped develop and which James Neel and Napoleon Chagnon administered to the Yanomami, had been licensed in the United States and elsewhere since 1963 and was given to more than 18 million infants and children.

"It is quite correct that the vacine was more reactive than its descendents, but it was never demonstrated that those who received it were capable of transmitting the virus.

"Neel and his colleagues vaccinated in the hope that they could abort an epidemic that had already broken out.

I am firmly convinced that the deaths and serious illness the Yanomami experienced were due to a natural 'wild' mesles virus, not the vacine.

"Tierney does a disservice to Neel..." not to mention Chagnon, and that's putting it mildly.

Jesse S. Cook III