LETTER : No Aids letter

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The Independent Online
From Dr Gerald Corbitt

Sir: Your article "Admission of false Aids case suppressed by NHS" (6 April), relating to research into the death in May 1959 of a man presumed to be the earliest known Aids case, suggests that I had a letter retracting my laboratory's own findings suppressed by my employers, Central Manchester Healthcare NHS Trust. In fact, although I spoke to your correspondent about preparing such a letter, as my first reaction, I never reached the stage of drafting a text.

Dr David Ho, of the Aaron Diamond Aids Research Center in New York, and I have collaborated openly over this investigation since July 1992. When he advised me of this most recent findings, I wrote to him suggesting a joint publication in The Lancet that might address the apparent dilemma. His findings raise a number of questions that need to be answered. Further studies are now ongoing, and these results will be published when available.

May I add that I have never been prevented from speaking freely on this issue.

Yours faithfully,

GERALD CORBITT

Department of Clinical Virology

Central Manchester Healthcare

NHS Trust

Manchester

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