The Wallach RevolutionThe Citizens Committee for Better Medicine is proud to present “The Wallach Revolution – (An Unauthorized Biography of a Medical Genius)”. The book is now available and chronicles the challenges, successes, and unique perspective of Dr. Joel D Wallach, a true pioneer in the field of science-based, clinically verified medical nutrition. (No portion of the content on this site may be exhibited, used or reproduced by any means without express written permission of the publisher.) Click HERE to get your copy of this brand new book!
Chapter 6 Page 7
The Cystic Fibrosis Discovery Suppressed by Yerkes Primate Center
The Emory University press release triggered stories in publications across the country extolling Wallach’s discovery. The Telegraph published the findings on March 7, 1978, writing: “A routine autopsy of a young rhesus monkey revealed the first known case of cystic fibrosis in a non-human and provided ‘a great boon’ to researchers seeking a cure to the disease, scientists say.” Likewise, on that same date, The Albany Herald published on that same day, quoting from the release: “This appears to be the first animal model of cystic fibrosis, and we’re excited about its implications,” said Drs. Joel Wallach and Harold McClure, veterinary pathologists at the Yerkes Regional Primate Research Center at Atlanta’s Emory University, where the discovery was made.”
The Telegraph-Herald published on August 24, and The Pittsburgh Press published on August 25, 1978 the following identical content:
A maverick scientist who found a mysterious sickness in five monkeys was cystic fibrosis has upset the theory the disease is an inherited disorder – and raised the possibility that environmental factors are the cause.
Dr. Joel D. Wallach of St. Louis said yesterday that he traced the first finding of the ailment in a primate colony to dietary factors—“supplemental feeding with large amounts of polyunsaturated oil which interfered with normal cell metabolism of the trace elements selenium and zinc, plus vitamin B-2.
It happened late last year at the Yerkes Primate Center in Atlanta, Ga.; and in a colony of research monkeys involved in unrelated investigations for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
Shortly after it became clear that the cystic fibrosis discovery would implicate Dr. Nelly Bourne in the rhesus monkey feeding faux pas, McClure distanced himself from Wallach. Wallach had generated a revolution in thinking about cystic fibrosis that brought national attention. To protect the reputation of Dr. Bourne’s wife, to protect NASA funding for the Center, and to keep in fellowship with the scientific community that had long endorsed genetics as the cause of cystic fibrosis, McClure, Bourne and others at Emory reversed course and conspired to oust Wallach and suppress his discovery.
With McClure in line, the head of the Center, Dr. Geoffery Bourne, called Wallach into his office and fired him on the spot in April of 1978. Wallach asked for an opportunity to defend his findings before his peers, a courtesy ordinarily given among graduate level professionals in the sciences. Bourne refused. Wallach was given no opportunity to prove his findings; Bourne put it this way to Wallach: “Everyone knows cystic fibrosis is a genetic disease.” In other words, how dare you challenge the orthodox medical wisdom. Wallach was sent packing.