What about G-Protein modifiers?

From Debunking Dr. Geoffrey Nase
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In her Forum post of September 14th, a brand new poster came on board with just one post containing some spectacular claims. Maria Cappolla told the group how her red face had been turned "white as a ghost" seven months ago by a single experimental treatment with G-Protein modifiers, administered by Dr. Geoffrey Nase's special wand. "It was a dream. 25 years plus beet red. Gone." "10 minutes of treatment and 7 months of no rosacea."

Nase appeared to be in charge at every stage, from starting the program and bringing in the apparatus, applying the drugs to the skin of the 13 participants (Maria said there were a dozen others), lecturing the many doctors and scientists involved in the experiment, right through to flying in from Indiana every 30 days for the next seven months to check on the test subjects. According to Maria's write-up, the whole wonderful project was Nase's idea: he had brought together four companies to work on rosacea, and he had personally come up with the idea of "reversing a hypertension drug and then selling them on it for us ...... who else". What a guy!

We at Nasewatch find this mighty strange because just eight days earlier, when Nase wrote about this exact same experiment in an update for his web site dated September 6th, he only claimed to have been "present for several of these tests during recent interviews with the company". Nase also said that he had "been in contact with the Research & Development Director and the CEO" of the firm for just two and a half months. What's the truth here?

Let's look at another of Nase's claims about the same experiment: "Initial pilot studies on 12 rosacea sufferers resulted in 95% reduction in facial redness and flushing episodes decreased from an average of 17.5 times a day to 0 times per day (could not be visibly noticed by clinicians nor felt by patients)."

Allowing 8 hours for sleeping leaves 16 hours a day to be up and about, so 17.5 flushing episodes per day would mean less than an hour between flushes. Only a severe rosacea sufferer could flush with anything like that frequency, yet rosaceans in that category often report flushes lasting well over an hour or two. Everything on Planet Geoffrey has to be super-sized and painted in day-glo colors, doesn't it?

The hyped-up speculations on Nase's website about "uncoupling G-proteins" to cut blood vessel dilation sound good, especially to those with little knowledge of science, but you can't just leap far ahead of what is known, and what can reasonably be extrapolated from that, and retain any credibility. There is nothing "scientific" in hunting out studies that are not related to rosacea but sound as if they could be, and then inserting references to rosacea and facial flushing so the studies will appear to support whatever you are pushing as the next Big Idea.

As with anything on Nase's web site, it is always wise to look back at the original source to see what the published text really said. In this case, it was a German research article titled 'GPR109A (PUMA-G/HM74A) mediates nicotinic acid-induced flushing', published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation 115:3634-3640 (2005). Here is a link to the actual article http://www.jci.org/cgi/content/full/115/12/3634

Under the INTRODUCTION section, please look at the third paragraph and note the period at the end of the first sentence, after the footnote (22-24).

From the study as it was published:

Recently, a G-protein-coupled receptor for nicotinic acid termed GPR109A (HM74A in humans and PUMA-G in mice) has been identified (22-24). The receptor is expressed in adipocytes and immune cells and couples to Gi-type G-proteins. ...

From the study as it appears on Nase's website:

Recently, a G-protein-coupled receptor for nicotinic acid termed GPR109A (HM74A in humans and PUMA-G in mice) has been identified (22-24) and been linked to facial flushing and burning sensations.

So it would seem that Nase wrote the last phrase! It certainly wasn't in the original paper. The phrase that was so conveniently added to the first sentence isn't found ANYWHERE in that publication.

(For discussion of yet another doctored phrase in one of Nase's documents, see Court Case Finally Over .)

This "G-Protein Modifiers" study was not concerned with rosacea. The study was done because some patients with high cholesterol don't take their niacin / nicotinic acid (a common cholesterol medication) because it gives them an uncomfortable whole body "niacin flush". The study simply showed that the G-protein in mice lessens niacin-induced flushing. Furthermore, the study is about mice, not humans. At best, it is weak and very misleading.

We know that phrase was added later to the study Nase quoted. Was he trying to bring another fake "aha" moment to rosaceans so they would go on thinking of him as their one best hope, the only fellow bringing state of the art information directly to them? How incredibly unhelpful and how totally misleading. What a bogus claim!

Is there really sufficient material out there to trigger the kind of research race Nase has claimed? It is highly unlikely. Firms such as Predix and Calbiochem are working with G-Protein modifiers, but there is no sign that any of them are even thinking about rosacea, let alone being led in grand coalitions under Nase's supervision.

We suspect that this experimental treatment supposedly already turning beet-red faces ghost-white will prove as impossible to locate as Maria Cappolla herself.