Nobel Prize for Medicine 2015 for Helping 200 Million People Per Year at Risk River Blindness

Before the recent political and business campaign and censorship against Ivermectin was a Nobel Prize-winning wonder drug. It was being given to 200 million people per year in Africa to reduce River Blindness. There were many other diseases it was being tested and was a major treatment for other human parasitic diseases.

Ivermectin was given for free to hundreds of millions of people. Tens of billions of dollars are being paid to Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson and Johnson for the antibody and other vaccines. I will leave it to the reader to determine if those two facts are relevant and how this could skew the behavior of regulators, companies and reporting.

The Nature article which I quote below on all of the human anti-viral effects of Ivermectin. How it has been prescribed and given by the WHO to billions of people. 200 million per year in 31 African countries and the main treatment against River Blindness. Also, other human parasitic diseases. A total of over 3.7 billion doses of Ivermectin have been prescribed to people since it was approved for humans in the early 1980s.

Note: You can have both. You have vaccinations AND drug therapies. You can also have indoor air filtration. Multiple good things can be done at the same time. You have seat belts and air bags and driver assistance software.

Joe Rogan interviewed CNN Sanjay Gupta to show the bottle he was prescribed by a doctor for treatment.

We always have to go to sources before the period of any of our current controversies to get at what was unbiased information.

Nobel Prize in medicine 2015 was given to William Campbell and Satoshi Ōmura who discovered the drug Ivermectin.

The transcript from William Campbell’s Novel Prize acceptance speech is here.

The results of our trials against various parasites in various animals suggested that ivermectin might be effective against several parasitic infections in humans. Being aware of the therapeutic needs in human parasitology, I had no doubt that the greatest potential for filling an unmet need was in River Blindness, which is caused by yet another species of Onchocerca—Onchocerca volvulus. The clinical exploration of possible ivermectin usage in humans could not be undertaken lightly; but nor could the prospect of an exceptional clinical beneft be dismissed lightly. Birnbaum and I took that message to the highest levels of Merck research management.

It was an exciting moment for both of us. The head of Merck research at the time was Dr. Roy Vagelos—and he and his top advisers approved a trial of ivermectin in humans. It would be a very cautious test of the efficacy of ivermectin in patients with the beginning stages of River Blindness—before any eye damage had occurred.

In February 1981, the first trials were conducted in Senegal by Dr. Mohammed Aziz of Merck, Dr. Samba Diallo of the University of Dakar, Dr. Michel Larivière of the University of Paris and their colleagues. The initial trials showed that ivermectin was effective against the microscopic worm larvae in the skin of River Blindness patients. That proved to be a landmark in the development of ivermectin for use in humans.

To understand why this was so important, it is necessary to understand that, in River Blindness, unlike the situation in dog heartworm disease, the adult worm is not the primary pathogen. It is the offspring, the microscopic baby worms, that cause the damage to the skin and the eyes. If they can safely be killed, the onset of clinical disease will be blocked. And that is what ivermectin does—as was soon confirmed by many investigators.

In 1987, Dr. Roy Vagelos announced that Merck & Co., Inc. would donate ivermectin for the prevention of River Blindness. Over the subsequent 30 years, some 2 billion treatments were distributed. The result was an expanding control of River Blindness, and eventually its certifed elimination in several countries. The program was undertaken by many groups. I will mention only the World Bank, Merck’s Mectizan Donation Program; the World Health Organization; and the Carter Center, but many other agencies participated.

Empirical research has been the foundation of the discovery of antiparasitic agents. But “trial and error” research has in recent years been beaten into disrepute and desuetude. And when it is abandoned, we cannot know what price has been paid in “non-discovery.”

I have recently made a proposal to search the earth more broadly for new “natural products” as a means of finding novel molecules for chemotherapeutic development. The focus would be primarily on substances produced in microbial fermentation, but could be broadened to include substances made by other forms of life. The target utility of screening new substances would not necessarily be limited to the feld of infectious diseases, or even to medicine at all. I have, on occasion, called it my “unpopular proposal”—unpopular because it is destitute of the glamour of “high science;” but though it harkens back, it also looks forward. It would not rely only on science—it would depend crucially on the talent abundantly available in the realms of logistics, finance and management.

The empirical testing of natural products for antiparasitic activity may eventually yield drugs that would be helpful in the multi-agency campaigns that are already underway to control insidious worm diseases such as the soil-transmitted worm infections. Nevertheless, chemotherapeutic disease-control should not be seen as the ultimate objective.

Billions of people have been given this drug in Africa, India and other parts of Asia to cure river blindness and other parasites and for other diseases.

In 2018, before the controversy, the WHO discussed how  Around 200 million people are at risk for the disease river blindness, that causes severe itching, disfiguring skin conditions and visual impairment, including blindness. More than 99% of infected people live in 31 African countries. Up through 2018, Ivermectin, the only drug currently in use, distributed annually to entire communities living in endemic areas, has significantly reduced river blindness.

A summary study from the journal Nature on Ivermectin’s antiviral effects.

Ivermectin proposes many potentials effects to treat a range of diseases, with its antimicrobial, antiviral, and anti-cancer properties as a wonder drug. It is highly effective against many microorganisms including some viruses. In this comprehensive systematic review, antiviral effects of ivermectin are summarized including in vitro and in vivo studies over the past 50 years. Several studies reported antiviral effects of ivermectin on RNA viruses such as Zika, dengue, yellow fever, West Nile, Hendra, Newcastle, Venezuelan equine encephalitis, chikungunya, Semliki Forest, Sindbis, Avian influenza A, Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome, Human immunodeficiency virus type 1, and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus . Furthermore, there are some studies showing antiviral effects of ivermectin against DNA viruses such as Equine herpes type 1, BK polyomavirus, pseudorabies, porcine circovirus 2, and bovine herpesvirus 1. Ivermectin plays a role in several biological mechanisms, therefore it could serve as a potential candidate in the treatment of a wide range of viruses including COVID-19 as well as other types of positive-sense single-stranded RNA viruses. In vivo studies of animal models revealed a broad range of antiviral effects of ivermectin, however, clinical trials are necessary to appraise the potential efficacy of ivermectin in a clinical setting.

Current research summary:

Apparent Successful Wide Scale Usage in India

India province Uttar Pradesh with a population of 204 million has reduced cases of COVID from over 300000 per day down to 187 per day.

In May, it was ordered that all people above 18 years in Goa will be given Ivermectin drug irrespective of their coronavirus status to bring down mortality, state Health Minister Vishwajit Rane said on Monday.

Patients will be given Ivermectin 12 mg. for a period of five days as expert panels from the U.K., Italy, Spain and Japan have found a statistically significant reduction in mortality, time to recovery and viral clearance in COVID-19 patients treated with this medicine.

There are counter claims that the drop in COVID cases was coincidental. One of the main claims is that in Uttar Pradesh, they reduced spread by having all contacts and family members of an infected person take Ivermectin preventatively.

It seems important and worth investigating what happened and what might work.

Goa, home medical kit with ivermectin, zinc and vitamin D

Chief Minister Dr. Pramod Sawant in the presence of Minister for Health Shri

Pulse Oximeter

Digital Thermometer

Paracetamol tablets (15)

Vitamin C tablets (30)

Multivitamin tablets with Zinc (30)

Vitamin D3 tablets (2 packs)

Ivermectin 12mg tablets (10)

Doxycycline 100mg tablets (10)

Three-ply face masks (5)

N-95 Masks (2)

Sanitizer (100ml)

Alcohol based Wipes (1 box with 20 plies)

Gloves (2 pairs)

Population 204 million

No fresh Covid cases in UP’s 59 districts

Last 24 hours, 191,446 samples tested

33 samples tested positive

Test Positivity Rate, lower than 0.01

Active caseload

Currently 187

April, 310,783

Factors to explain success

Targeted testing of specific groups

Early detection

Contact tracing


Free and timely provision of medicine kits and treatment to the rural populace

$2.65 per person

SOURCES- Joe Rogan, Nature, Nobel Prize for Medicine, Dr John Campbell
Written by Brian Wang,

6 thoughts on “Nobel Prize for Medicine 2015 for Helping 200 Million People Per Year at Risk River Blindness”

  1. Vaccination status adds a confounding variable, but not insurmountable. If controlled for, breakthrough cases amongst vaccinated could be treated with ivermectin. The bigger problem is the number of people taking these treatments on their own. Why join a study and possibly get a placebo when you can simply get it on your own and know you got the real thing.

  2. It gets ethically harder the more there are effective alternative treatments. In the current situation I think it would be beneficial if trials could take full advantage of the fact that there are large numbers of people who are deliberately refusing vaccination, are therefore often hospitalized with severe Covid and who want to be treated with Ivermectin.

  3. Good trials can take more time and money than wild speculation. did look into it, they didn't see much use for ivermectin, but did find some positive effects for fluvoxamine. I also think Oxford is doing some trials in their PRINCIPLE trial. I should also note: none of the medications have shown to be the silver bullet some have touted them as. Vaccination remains your best defense, followed by medication for breakthrough infections.

  4. How is it possible that a clinical double blind trail has not been done yet either proving or dis-proving this medication?
    Why is the use of Ivermectin as a treatment for COVID-19 still debatable?

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