Have you tried to reset the PMU, by removing the battery and power, holding down the power button for five seconds? I am sure you may well have.
It sounds to me like a fault either with the drive or the ATA controller on the logic board.
try testing the board with a replacement drive and see if that shows up in profiler. If it does then it has to be a fault with the super drive. If a replacement drive does not show in the profiler then it could be the lead or controller.
I've had a 12" PowerBook not show or recognize an optical drive before and it turned out to be a firmware problem. On resetting the firmware all worked fine.
Best of luck