Amazon UK seller breaches Cancer act (1939)

By Keir Liddle

a selection of homeovitality "remedies"Homoeopathic products are being advertised and sold through the Amazon UK site that are in breach of the UK Cancer act (1939).

A company named Homeovitality offers a range of “drug free” treatments for sale through Amazon all of these are advertised as promoting good health super naturally with drug free technology. They offer products that claim to promote more effective wound healing, promote fertility, boost and support a series of important immune systems that protect the body against bacteria and virusesstop the development of an undesirable immune response , help people may remember better and enjoy an increased IQ and indeed a number of products that they claim can treat cancer.

They offer fibrocare advertising it on Amazon using the following spiel:

“Homeovitality Fibrocare has been designed to target the genes, KEAP1, DEFB1 and PPARG. KEAP1 suppresses tumour growth. PPARG has been shown to kill fibroids cells and DEFB1 provides protection against infection. May be taken safely on a long term basis. What do the genes KEAP1, PPARG and DEFB1 do? KEAP1 is a recently discovered master tumour suppressor gene. Scientists at the M. D. Anderson’s Department of Molecular and Cellular Oncology discovered how it works. It suppresses tumour growth by destruction of oncoproteins, proteins that promote tumour growth. It also inhibits tumour invasion or spreading and helps to cut off a tumour’s blood supply so that it its growth is arrested. Dr. Nam and colleagues have demonstrated that up-regulation of PPARG is helpful in treatment of (leiomyomas) fibroids. They have discovered that stabilisation of the activity of PPARG slows down the growth of fibroids. It also triggers a self-destruct mechanism which causes fibroid cells to kill themselves. When fibroid cells are killed by the action of PPARG for example, the uterus and uro-genital tract become more prone to infection. The DEFB1 gene produces a small natural anti-bacterial peptide that protects all tissue surfaces from infection. DEFB1 is targeted to help reduce the risk of intra-uterine infection when fibroid cell numbers are diminished.”

They also offer Cancer care with the following:

“For a cell to become cancerous it must first form a tumour and then develop the ability for some of the tumour cells to spread to other parts of the body. Homeovitality Cancer Care has been developed to target the KEAP1 and TIP30 genes to arrest tumour growth and stop tumour cells from spreading. May be taken on a permanent basis after diagnosis. What do KEAP1 and TIP30 do? KEAP1 is a recently discovered master tumour suppressor gene. Scientists at the M. D. Anderson’s Department of Molecular and Cellular Oncology discovered how it works. It suppresses tumour growth by destruction of oncoproteins, proteins that promote tumour growth. It also inhibits tumour invasion or spreading and helps to cut off a tumour’s blood supply so that it its growth is arrested. The same scientists found that under-expression of KEAP1 alone resulted in poor survival among many different types of cancer patients. TIP30 on the other hand has been shown to play a very important role in inhibition of the spread of cancer cells, metastasis. Insufficient activity of TIP30 permits cancer cells to spread to other parts of the body. Therefore, up-regulation of TIP30 plays an important role in reducing the spread of cancer cells.”

Also available is TumOX40:

OX 40 plays an important role in enabling immune cells to work better and kill cancer cells more effectively. The Homeovitality TumOX40 has been designed to target the OX40 gene, the gene that encodes the OX 40 cytotoxic T-cell immune stimulant. What does the OX40 gene do? There are a number of different types of cells within the immune system. One of them, a type of T cell called a cytotoxic T cell, plays an important role in the killing of cancer or tumour cells. Recognition of the existence of tumour-specific T cells confirms that the immune response can be deployed to combat cancer. However, T cell cytotoxic activity is often suppressed in the environment of a tumour, resulting in impairment of the tumour specific cytotoxic T cell’s ability to kill its target tumour cells. In recent years, scientists have discovered that members of the tumour necrosis factor superfamily direct many parts of the immune system. One family member, OX40 has been found to be a key factor that augments T-cell expansion, cytokine production, and survival of tumour specific cytotoxic T cells. Studies over the last decade or so have also confirmed that OX40 does in fact increase the ability of cytotoxic T cells to recognise cancer cells as being immunologically foreign and increase their capacity to kill them. Reference to how OX40 can stimulate the activity of tumour specific cytotoxic T-cells is diagrammatically represented in the Agonox literature.

I have highlighted in bold the sections which appear to contrive the Cancer Act (1939) specifically the legal phrohibiton against adverts for drugs or treatments

“containing an offer to treat any person for cancer, or to prescribe any remedy therefore, or to give any advice in connection with the treatment thereof”

Nearly all of the products offered by Homeovitality are homeopathic dilutions of 10^12 which makes it vanishingly likely that they have anything remotely approaching efficacy or that there has been any research supporting the companies claims. Indeed the only research offered in support of these claims by the company relates simply to the role of the various chemicals in the various conditions BEFORE any homeopathic dilutions have occurred.

It seems homeovitality have simple assumed that homeopathy works, despite all evidence to the contrary, therefore homeopathic dilutions of things that work must therefore work. A potentially harmful and dangerous view to take and one that plays as fast and loose with evidence and medical science as it does with their customers health.

The company could potentially weasel out of answering such concerns by noting they only claim their dilute versions of these treatments have simply being designed or developed to treat cancer. That the product descriptions clearly deal with research and claims into the non-homeopathic versions however it seems clear that the manner in which these descriptions and adverts are constructed that they have the potential to mislead cancer patients into believing they are buying an effective cancer treatment when in reality they are simply getting magic water.

However the company can not weasel out of the glaring contradiction apparent in their advertising. Homoevitalitys products are simultaneously being sold as “drug free technology” and based upon and containing cutting edge drug treatments. Perhaps this is a admission that there is indeed nothing in homeopathy?

I have complained to the ASA and hope to be able to report back on their adjudications. I encourage others to complain about the other remedies Homeovitality advertise for sale through Amazon. As unlike their own website (where they are far more careful about the claims they make) they make some obviously false and misleading claims.

I have also highlighted the issue to Amazon customer services who have assured me that they are now investigating the issue and will be contacting the seller regarding these claims. This action may lead to the claims being removed.

Homeovitality is a UK registered company, number: 07297274, based in Preston Lancashire and founded on 28-06-2010 by Dr Peter H. Kay. Alongside Homeovitality products he also offers a diploma in New Homeopathic micro-DNA Therapy and consultations at the Homeovitality “Natural Super Health Clinic“.

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7 Responses to Amazon UK seller breaches Cancer act (1939)

  1. Adam Jacobs says:

    That’s disappointing, but sadly not surprising. I’ve recently discovered that Amazon doesn’t seem to think that UK laws apply to them.

    When I ordered some hay fever tablets (loratadine) from Amazon, I was rather surprised that the product I’d bought was an illegal unlicensed one. I reported this to Amazon, and got a nice email back saying that they take this sort of thing very seriously, but clearly the only thing they take seriously is the chance to make a few quid.

    The illegal listing is still there.

    You might want to try reporting this to the MHRA. I believe (though I could be wrong) they are responsible for enforcing claims under the Cancer Act.

  2. I am hopeful that Amazon will do the right thing. This is really an issue with an outside seller who is using amazons services.

    Hopefully they can assure the sellers claims are changed or might decide to withdraw their amazon store.

    If not I think perhaps the Nightingale collaboration might consider a campaign of sorts?

  3. A thought occurs, and it is something I could pretty easily do this weekend, would it be worth setting up a crowd sourced and maintained activism watchlist for such things?

    That way we could track this nonsense and see if someone has complained, who they have complained to and what the result was?

    Would be reasonably easy to setup I reckon.

  4. I just checked Amazo.co.uk, all products. NO hits for Homeovitality or for Fibrocare. This may be good news.

    • When I search I still find 27 results. Cancer Care and Fibrocare have vanished but TumOX40 remains. As do products for all manner of other conditions. Really we need a new cancer act that covers all manner of nonsense.

      I think this might be because it’s spelt “homeovitality” I’ve probably put it up incorrectly in the article above (apologies)

  5. Acleron says:

    Just searched Amazon and 27 hits for homeovitality and it still includes ‘Cancer Care’. Also has a treatment for diabetes.

  6. Alan Henness says:

    Adam

    It’s Trading Standards that enforce the Cancer Act:

    The Cancer Act 1939 (“the Cancer Act”) prohibits any advertisement to the public that contains an offer to treat any person for cancer, or to prescribe any remedy for its treatment, or to give any advice in connection with the treatment of the condition. The Cancer Act is administered and enforced by the Trading Standards Service.

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