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Posted March 30, 2004 by publisher in Cuban Healthcare

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[url=http://www.granma.cu]http://www.granma.cu[/url] | Granma International staff writer BY RAISA PAGES

Cuban scientists will continue to send articles to U.S. publishers, states Dr. Carlos Gutierrez, CENIC director, in spite of Washington’s ban on publishing articles by specialists from Cuba, Iran, Libya and Sudan

A search on the University of Ghent library’s Science Web at the beginning of February showed that in 2003 alone, 644 articles by Cuban authors were published in 351 influential magazines in 31 countries.
According to an analysis of those search results, Cuba publishes some 35% of its scientific articles in important U.S. magazines, including 225 in 2003 alone.

This exchange of knowledge between the U.S. and Cuban scientific communities has recently been banned by the Bush administration. The U.S. Treasury Department approved a regulation imposing a fine of $50,000 and/or 10 years’ imprisonment on those U.S. editors who publish Cuban articles, considering it to be a violation of the trade embargo, in their terms.

“This measure goes against freedom of expression in world science. Not only does it block the diffusion of Cuban science, but it also deprives people in the United States from continuing to receive findings by their Cuban colleagues,” affirmed Dr. Carlos Gutierrez, director of the National Scientific Research Center (CENIC), located in west Havana.

Dr. Gutierrez affirmed that more than 15 specialized U.S. magazines published 30 articles by CENIC researchers in 2003 alone.

“Our U.S. colleagues are very interested in learning about our institution’s findings on the natural product Policosanol (PPG), which has demonstrated its effectiveness in the prevention of cardio-cerebral-vascular disease, the main cause of death in the United States,” he stated.

“Given the blockade imposed by Washington, people in the United States cannot buy the PPG made in Cuba, which is obtained naturally from sugar cane and is patented in more than 30 countries.

“With no access to the natural Cuban product, the U.S. pharmaceutical industry is deceiving consumers, selling more than 10 fake versions of Policosanol, which are marketed with erroneous Cuban PPG information and cause severe side effects that can even lead to death,” Dr. Gutierrez stated.

“It has been proven that the Policosanol sold in the U.S. is fake. Cuban PPG is being sold to 30 countries, mainly Australia, Mexico, Argentina, Norway and Canada,” he added.

Interest shown by U.S. colleagues in CENIC findings is also linked to the development of analytic chemistry, findings in microscopic electronics, the neurosciences and natural medicines, Dr. Gutierrez continued.

“The ban on exchange between Cuban and U.S. scientists is not only in violation of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, it also goes against what Bush himself proclaimed on September 17, 2003, when he declared it Citizenship Day and established that the week 17 through 23 would be Constitution Week in the United States.

“On the one hand he is defending the Constitution and on the other infringing it with measures like this one. What he has done with Cuba is in violation of the First Amendment, which expresses: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

“The U.S. president is acting with a double moral standard by defending constitutional rights on the one hand and flagrantly violating them on the other,” Dr. Gutierrez emphasized.

The director of CENIC a 40-year-old institution noted that 30 articles from the center have been published in important U.S. magazines such as Current Therapeutic Research, Thrombosis Research, Diabetes Care, Fd. Chem. Toxic, Adv. Ther, Pharmacol. Research, and Int. J. Clin. Pharmac. Ther. Up to 15 of them are highly selective in their choice of articles.

“We Cuban scientists are not going to let ourselves to be intimidated,” the professor confirmed. “We will continue to send our articles to these U.S. publishers. We cannot play along with the Bush administration; instead, we must force it to apply that irrational law so as to expose it to the world.”

  1. Follow up post #1 added on May 08, 2006 by Theresa

    What is a good brand of policosanol I could buy here in the U.S. or is it possible to order from Cuba.  thank you

  2. Follow up post #2 added on October 06, 2006 by Kevin Gold

    Talk about double moral standard! What a shameless manipulation and crass propaganda by Director Gutierrez to critizice President Bush for violating the First Amendment to our Constitution!!

    Has he no shame at all? How dare he mention our freedoms and liberties enshrined in our Constitution when his government is well known to be one of the most repressive regimes in the world?

    Before having the gall to critizice President Bush for allegedly violating our Cosntitution, Mr. Gutierez should take a close look at political conditions and total lack of freedom of speech -or any other freedoms, for that matter- that his government has imposed on Cubans for almost half a century. The only doble moral standard here is his.

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