Contaminated Blood: Alpha, Green Cross and alleged Japanese war criminals…Unit 731

Haemophiliac Pete Longstaff just prior to his death, who was a recipient of Alpha Therapeutic contaminated blood products and was horried to learn of the parent company links to alleged war criminals at Unit 731, Manchuria, China
(Image, Archives Newcastle Journal, related media, Bad Blood campaign.)

Open email to the Infected Blood Inquiry, 24th October 2022 sent by this author and core participant to the Infected Blood Inquiry chaired by Sir Brian Langstaff

Dear All, (VERY IMPORTANT… Alpha Therapeutic, Abbot, Green Cross, Unit 731, Manchuria, China)

A reminder in case the Inquiry forgot this evidence as I sent information early on in the Inquiry investigations. (Alpha Therapeutic was one of the 4 pharmas named in US litigation which Pete and I persuaded US Law firm LCHB to take on re UK haemophiliacs.) I strongly urge you to read about the extent of the experimentation and watch the video.

I am sending these articles as I have not so far heard the Inquiry mention the fact that alleged Japanese war criminals that carried out the most horrendous unethical, torturous and deadly experiments in Unit 731 (Manchuria, China) had key roles in founding and running one plasma company, Japanese Green Cross. Alpha, a US company whose products were used in the 1970s and 80s on my Pete and others was a subsidiary of Japanese Green Cross which was the parent company. The Americans gave those Japanese who committed terrible crimes immunity (from prosecution) in exchange for the data from the experiments which no ethical person or company could ever undertake on live human subjects. My husband Pete was deeply disturbed after we spoke with Japanese haemophiliacs in the early 2000s about their legal cases (some haemophiliacs in the US too) and more came to light on Unit 731 in 2002. Pete received Alpha products in the 1970s when some (now old men) were still working with Green Cross, Alpha, at the time Pete had Alpha products and they had received high praise from Americans working in the plasma industry (at least prior to the legal cases that were to follow!!!)

There is some reference in the Douglas Starr book, Blood: An Epic History of Medicine and Commerce to the Japanese war criminals but the book was published in 1998 before the 2002 revelations came out… and Ryoichi Naito lied about the extent of the experimentation. A number of these men from Unit 731 were involved in the plasma industry. There were allegations Japanese haemophiliacs were delayed in receiving heat treated products so when they became infected, doctors/scientists could study the progress of AIDS. Learning about Alpha Therapeutics and Japanese Green Cross was another strong influence on Pete, instigating and maintaining his treatment strike for recombinant and refusing human plasma until his death in 2005. I got hold of a book written on Unit 731 which I still have somewhere and it is one of the most horrendous books I have ever read with enormous suffering caused to human test subjects, men, women, children and babies which rival Dr Mengele and his team in Auschwitz in their horror and cruelty and in some instances surpassed the Nazi experimentation. Far greater numbers of doctors/scientists were involved in experimentation numbering thousands.

  • Green Cross is a foreign corporation organized under the laws of Japan and is the parent corporation of Alpha. Alpha was established by Green Cross in 1978. Green Cross acquired the Abbott Scientific Products Division (ASPD) from Abbott Laboratories, Inc. in 1978 and transferred the assets of ASPD directly to Alpha.
  • Gruca v. Alpha Therapeutic Corp., 19 F. Supp. 2d 862 (N.D. Ill. 1998)
  • US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois – 19 F. Supp. 2d 862 (N.D. Ill. 1998)
    September 3, 1998,transferred%20the%20assets%20of%20ASPD%20directly%20to%20Alpha.

AKAMATSU, Japan, Aug. 14 Kyodo

The late founder of scandal-plagued Green Cross Corp. urged that activities of a secret germ warfare unit in China be concealed from Allied forces immediately after World War II, according to a letter written by a unit leader.

Ryoichi Naito, a former surgeon with the rank of lieutenant colonel in the defunct Imperial Japanese Army, made the suggestion later adopted by leaders of the notorious Unit 731 to hide its activities from Allied investigators documenting war crimes, according to the letter.

The five-paged letter was penned by Col. Tomosada Masuda, who served as one of the unit’s commanders, at his hiding place in Chiba Prefecture on Nov. 9, 1945, using brush and ink on army stationery.

It was addressed to the late Lt. Col. Seiichi Niizuma, who oversaw scientific information at the wartime Army Ministry’s military affairs department.

Unit 731 was active from 1936 in former Manchuria, now northeastern China. The unit is believed to have conducted germ warfare against the local population and used some 3,000 Chinese, Russians, Mongolians and other prisoners of war (POWs) as test subjects for bacteriological experiments.

The letter said Naito advised the unit’s senior officers to volunteer any information during interrogation except details about its use of human guinea pigs, germ warfare and its failed plan to attack the United States using bacteria and viruses.

World War 2 Database

Ryoichi Naito


Lieutenant Colonel Ryoichi Naito, a medical doctor specializing in microbiology, was a high ranking officer with the Epidemic Prevention and Water Purification Department (Unit 731) of the Japanese Army. In the 1930s and early 1940s, he operated in northeastern China, where he participated in programs involving pathogen weaponization and human experimentation. In mid-1942, he was made the second scientific head of OKA 9420 headquartered in Outram Park, Singapore (now the building hosting the Singapore Ministry of Health). Under his leadership, OKA 9420 spread to additional sites in Malaya (Permai Hospital in Tampoi, Johor, and a school in Kuala Pilah, Negeri Sembilan), employing about 150 physicians. His primary task was to prevent the spread of tropical diseases among Japanese military personnel; his team also ventured on side projects such as the creation of an anti-tetanus vaccine. Secretly, he also operated a major laboratory operation that cultivated pathogens such as bubonic plague, cholera, smallpox, malaria, typhus, dysentery, and anthrax. Under his direction, tens of thousands rats were trapped locally and brought in from abroad. These rats were injected with diseases and then fed to fleas; the fleas would then be used directly as weapons. The operation fled Singapore in Jun 1945 to Laos, far ahead of a possible British return. Naito was among the Unit 731 officers who were granted immunity by the Americans after the war, in exchange of the knowledge obtained through inhumane methods that the Americans could not conduct. He went on to have a successful career, cofounding the firm Japan Blood Bank (now the pharmaceutical firm Green Cross Corporation) in 1950; some of the fellow cofounders were also former members of Unit 731. He passed away in Jul 1982. In 1998, it was discovered that he had lied to the American occupation, saying that Unit 731 had never used humans in experiments.

Unit 731

Video Unit 731

Japan’s Secret World War II Death Lab (2003)

Green Cross founder tied to Unit 731 preservation (Japan Times, August 14th 1998)


The founder of Green Cross Corp., an Osaka-based pharmaceutical firm, played a major role shortly after World War II in preventing senior members of Unit 731 from being prosecuted as war criminals, it was learned Friday.

Ryoichi Naito, a physician and key member of the unit, drafted a plan in which unit leaders would hand over to the U.S. military most of the information related to the unit’s efforts to develop biological and chemical weapons.


In May and October 1989, HIV-infected haemophiliacs in Osaka and Tokyo filed lawsuits against the Ministry of Health and Welfare and five Japanese drug companies. In 1994 two charges of attempted murder were filed against Dr. Takeshi Abe, who had headed the Health Ministry’s AIDS research team in 1983; he was found not guilty in 2005.[citation needed] Abe resigned as vice-president of Teikyo University.[citation needed]

In January 1996, Naoto Kan was appointed Health Minister. He assembled a team to investigate the scandal, and within a month nine files of documents related to the scandal were uncovered, despite the Ministry of Health’s claims that no such documents existed. As Minister, Kan promptly admitted the Ministry’s legal responsibility and formally apologised to the plaintiffs.[citation needed]

The reports uncovered by Kan’s team revealed that, after the report about the possibility of contamination, untreated blood products were recalled by the Japanese importer. However, when the importer tried to present a report to the Ministry of Health, it was told that such a report was unnecessary. The Ministry claimed that there was a “lack of evidence pointing to links between infection with HIV and the use of unheated blood products.” According to one official, “we could not make public a fact that could fan anxieties among patients” [J.E.N].[citation needed]

According to the files, the Ministry of Health had recommended, in 1983, that the import of untreated blood and blood products be banned, and that emergency imports of heat-treated products be allowed. A week later, however, this recommendation was withdrawn because it would “deal a blow” to Japan’s marketers of untreated blood products [Updike].[citation needed]

In 1983 Japan imported 3.14 million litres of blood plasma from the US to produce its own blood products, as well as 46 million units of prepared blood products. These imported blood products were said to pose no risk of HIV infection, and were used in Japan until 1986. Heat-treated products had been on sale since 1985, but there was neither a recall of remaining products nor a warning about the risks of using untreated products. As a result, untreated blood preparations stored at hospitals and in patients’ home refrigerators were used up; there have been cases reported in which individuals were diagnosed with haemophilia for the first time between 1985 and 1986, began treatment, and were subsequently infected with HIV, even though it was known that HIV could be transmitted in untreated blood preparations, and treated products had become available and were in use at that time.[citation needed]

As early as 1984, several Japanese haemophiliacs were discovered to have been infected with HIV through the use of untreated blood preparations; this fact was concealed from the public. The patients themselves continued to receive “intentional propaganda” which downplayed the risks of contracting HIV from blood products, assured their safety, and promoted their use. Of some 4500 haemophiliacs in Japan, an estimated 2000 contracted HIV in the 1980s from untreated blood preparations [J.E.N].[citation needed]


Main article: SCOJ 2005 No. 947

Renzō Matsushita, former head of the Ministry of Health and Welfare’s Pharmaceutical Affairs Bureau, and two of his colleagues, were found guilty of professional negligence resulting in death. Matsushita was sentenced to two years in jail. A murder charge was also brought against him. Matsushita, who after retirement became president of Green Cross, is one of at least nine former Ministry of Health bureaucrats who have retired to executive positions in Japan’s blood industry since the 1980s (see ama kudari).[citation needed]

Read on…

If I remember correctly, Abe was president of Alpha Therapeutics. (Need to check?)

Japan arrests doctor in case of bad blood (New York Times, August 30th, 1996)

Japan blood supplier, Facing HIV penalty to be acquired (New York Times, Feb, 25th 1997)

  • Abe, central figure in HIV-tainted blood products scandal, dies (April 29th, 2005) 


Hemophilia expert Takeshi Abe, who was facing an appeals trial over his acquittal in a professional negligence case, died of heart failure Monday evening at a Tokyo hospital, his family said. He was 88.

The Tokyo High Court suspended the appeals trial in February 2004 after it determined the former Teikyo University vice president was mentally incompetent.

Around the country: Why Alpha Therapeutic prefers being owned by a Japanese company (Quality of Production and Improvement in the Workplace: Hearing Before the …

By United States. Congress. House. Committee on Ways and Means. Subcommittee on Trade)

Page 60,


A former colonel in the Japanese Medical Corps, Green Cross Chairman, Ryoichi Naito “is a unique person, an international man”reports Drees who also calls Naito, “the best boss I ever had” (page 61)

Abbot is also mentioned

Kind Regards


Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights/WOT and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad.  She was a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”

About Carol Anne Grayson

Blogging for Humanity.... Campaigner/researcher global health/human rights/drones/WOT/insurgency Exec Producer of Oscar nominated documentary Incident in New Baghdad, currently filming on drones.
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