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Drew University Nobel Prize Winner Refutes Ivermectin Meme

Dr. William Campbell makes statement against fake quotation on Twitter

September 2021 – Drew University’s Nobel Prize-winning RISE Fellow Associate Dr. William Campbell has issued a statement denouncing a fake quote attributed to him relating to COVID-19 and ivermectin.

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Campbell is a Fellow Associate in Drew's RISE program, which pairs undergraduate science students with industry researchers and scientists in the lab.

On September 8, 2021, a tweet surfaced with a photo of Campbell underneath a fake quote he has since confirmed was completely fabricated.

“I utterly despise and deny the remarks attributed to me on social media on September 8, 2021,” he wrote. “I reject both the substance and the tone of the remarks, and resent their presentation as a direct quotation. The tweet in question was not concerned with science. I am a biologist with no claim to expertise in the clinical evaluation of drugs against viral infections. Thus, I have not taken a stand in support of, or against, the efficacy of ivermectin against COVID-19.”

Campbell, along with Satoshi Omura, won the 2015 Nobel Prize in Medicine for the discovery of ivermectin, a drug that treats parasitic diseases such as river blindness. Ivermectin has recently been suggested as an alternative treatment or preventative measure against COVID-19, a theory which has not been validated scientifically.

The Washington Post’s Fact Checker page first brought the misleading tweet into the mainstream media after Campbell, through University officials, established that its contents were false.

University officials immediately reported the tweet to Twitter, citing its misleading and potentially harmful misinformation, and for impersonating an individual. As of Friday, September 10, 2021, the tweet had been taken down.

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