Wednesday, 4 September 2013

The Challenge

Here is the challenge to Ginger Taylor and her army of lack brains. Show me and other readers how these reports are wrong, and do it by addressing the responses and not the people who wrote them. If you can't or won't then it would be clear that the responses are accurate and the reports have to be noted as not proving any sort of link between vaccines and Autism. It's black and white with no grey areas.

Elevated maternal C-reactive protein and autism in a national birth cohort.

Correct citation: Brown AS, Sourander A, Hinkka-Yli-Salomäki S, McKeague IW, Sundvall J, Surcel HM. Elevated maternal C-reactive protein and autism in a national birth cohort. Mol Psychiatry. 2013 Jan 22. doi: 10.1038/mp.2012.197. [Epub ahead of print]

This study does not address vaccines.

[needs additional attention]

Inflammatory Responses to Trivalent Influenza Virus Vaccine Among Pregnant Women

Correct citation: Christian LM, Iams JD, Porter K, Glaser R. Inflammatory responses to trivalent influenza virus vaccine among pregnant women. Vaccine. 2011 Nov 8;29(48):8982-7. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2011.09.039. Epub 2011 Sep 22.

Two subsequent studies, listed below, have confirmed the safety of trivalent influenza virus vaccines for pregnant women and the children whose mothers were vaccinated during pregnancy.

Nordin JD, Kharbanda EO, Benitez GV, Nichol K, Lipkind H, Naleway A, Lee GM, Hambidge S, Shi W, Olsen A. Maternal safety of trivalent inactivated influenza vaccine in pregnant women. Obstet Gynecol. 2013 Mar;121(3):519-25. doi: 10.1097/AOG.0b013e3182831b83.

Conlin AM, Bukowinski AT, Sevick CJ, DeScisciolo C, Crum-Cianflone NF. Safety of the pandemic H1N1 influenza vaccine among pregnant U.S. military women and their newborns. Obstet Gynecol. 2013 Mar;121(3):511-8. doi: 10.1097/AOG.0b013e318280d64e.

Autism Spectrum Disorders in Relation to Distribution of Hazardous Air Pollutants in the SF Bay Area

Correct citation: Windham GC, Zhang L, Gunier R, Croen LA, Grether JK. Autism spectrum disorders in relation to distribution of hazardous air pollutants in the san francisco bay area. Environ Health Perspect. 2006 Sep;114(9):1438-44.

This study does not address vaccines.

[needs additional attention]

Thimerosal and autism? A plausible hypothesis that should not be dismissed.

Correct citation: Blaxill MF, Redwood L, Bernard S. Thimerosal and autism? A plausible hypothesis that should not be dismissed. Med Hypotheses. 2004;62(5):788-94.

The concerns about thimerosal have been addressed with epidemiological studies, and dismissed. The concerns about thimerosal have been given a thorough airing in the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program legal hearings (Autism Omnibus) and have been found to be baseless.

Slow CCL2-dependent translocation of biopersistent particles from muscle to brain

Correct citation: Khan Z, Combadière C, Authier FJ, Itier V, Lux F, Exley C, Mahrouf-Yorgov M, Decrouy X, Moretto P, Tillement O, Gherardi RK, Cadusseau J. Slow CCL2-dependent translocation of biopersistent particles from muscle to brain. BMC Med. 2013 Apr 4;11:99. doi: 10.1186/1741-7015-11-99.

This paper assumes that ‘Shoenfeld syndrome” or "Autoimmune (Auto-inflammatory) Syndrome Induced by Adjuvants” (ASIA) is a real thing. It has not yet been verified.

I have asked the Science Based Medicine folk to address

[needs additional attention]

The rise in autism and the role of age at diagnosis.

Correct citation: Hertz-Picciotto I, Delwiche L. The rise in autism and the role of age at diagnosis. Epidemiology. 2009 Jan;20(1):84-90. doi: 10.1097/EDE.0b013e3181902d15.

“Autism incidence in California shows no sign yet of plateauing. Younger ages at diagnosis, differential migration, changes in diagnostic criteria, and inclusion of milder cases do not fully explain the observed increases.”

Evidently, according to Taylor, that means that vaccine must account for the observed increases, while disregarding significant changes in demographic data, such as maternal and paternal age at first childbirth.

It is curious that Taylor does not include the other 18 papers on autism in which Hertz-Picciotto has been a contributing author

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=((Hertz-Picciotto%20I%5BAuthor%5D)%20AND%20(%222009%2F1%2F1%22%5BDate%20-%20Publication%5D%20%3A%20%223000%22%5BDate%20-%20Publication%5D))%20AND%20autism%5BMeSH%20Major%20Topic%5D

Maternal thimerosal exposure results in aberrant cerebellar oxidative stress, thyroid hormone metabolism, and motor behavior in rat pups; sex- and strain-dependent effects.

Correct citation: Sulkowski ZL, Chen T, Midha S, Zavacki AM, Sajdel-Sulkowska EM. Maternal thimerosal exposure results in aberrant cerebellar oxidative stress, thyroid hormone metabolism, and motor behavior in rat pups; sex- and strain-dependent effects. Cerebellum. 2012 Jun;11(2):575-86. doi: 10.1007/s12311-011-0319-5.

Rat study looking at thimerosal, which is no longer used in childhood vaccines in the U.S. (with the exception of some influenza vaccines).

[needs additional attention]

Hepatitis B vaccine induces apoptotic death in Hepa1-6 cells

Correct citation: Hamza H, Cao J, Li X, Li C, Zhu M, Zhao S. Hepatitis B vaccine induces apoptotic death in Hepa1-6 cells. Apoptosis. 2012 May;17(5):516-27. doi: 10.1007/s10495-011-0690-1.

An in-vitro study of how mouse (murine) cells derived from a cancerous tumor react to being bathed in Hepatitis B vaccine. No mention of autism. No relevance to autism.

Integrating experimental (in vitro and in vivo) neurotoxicity studies of low-dose thimerosal relevant to vaccines.

Correct citation: Dórea JG. Integrating experimental (in vitro and in vivo) neurotoxicity studies of low-dose thimerosal relevant to vaccines. Neurochem Res. 2011 Jun;36(6):927-38. doi: 10.1007/s11064-011-0427-0. Epub 2011 Feb 25.

In vitro study, with a small inclusion of a rat study.

Unanswered Questions: A Review of Compensated Cases of Vaccine-Induced Brain Injury

Correct citation: Holland M, Conte L, Krakow R, Colin L, . Unanswered Questions: A Review of Compensated Cases of Vaccine-Induced Brain Injury. Pace Environmental Law Review, vol. 28, no. 2, 2011

This was a very poor-quality review in a student-run law journal, with substantial ethical and methodological flaws.

Debunked here:

http://www.wired.com/geekmom/2011/05/is-the-vaccine-injury-compensation-program-covering-up-an-autism-vaccine-link/

http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/when-you-cant-win-on-science-invoke-the-law-2/

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2011/05/11/pace-study-confirms-autism-prevalence/

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2011/05/20/study-by-nyu-and-pace-another-failure-in-obtaining-ethical-approval/

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2011/05/10/student-mags-and-altered-press-releases/

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2011/05/24/anti-vaccine-warriors-vs-research-ethics/

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2011/05/11/another-swing-for-the-fences-and-a-miss/

Neonatal Administration of Thimerosal Causes Persistent Changes in Mu Opioid Receptors in the Rat Brain

Correct citation: Olczak M, Duszczyk M, Mierzejewski P, Bobrowicz T, Majewska MD. Neonatal administration of thimerosal causes persistent changes in mu opioid receptors in the rat brain. Neurochem Res. 2010 Nov;35(11):1840-7. doi: 10.1007/s11064-010-0250-z. Epub 2010 Aug 28.

Rat study, thimerosal (no longer used in U.S. childhood vaccines except for some influenza vaccines), concentrations higher than formerly found in vaccines.

Note: lead researcher M Dorota Majewska seems to have specialized in rat studies that show thimerosal damage.

Administration of thimerosal to infant rats increases overflow of glutamate and aspartate in the prefrontal cortex: protective role of dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate.

Correct citation: Duszczyk-Budhathoki M, Olczak M, Lehner M, Majewska MD. Administration of thimerosal to infant rats increases overflow of glutamate and aspartate in the prefrontal cortex: protective role of dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate. Neurochem Res. 2012 Feb;37(2):436-47. doi: 10.1007/s11064-011-0630-z. Epub 2011 Oct 21.

Rat study, thimerosal (no longer used in U.S. childhood vaccines except for some influenza vaccines), concentrations higher than formerly found in vaccines.

Note: lead researcher M Dorota Majewska seems to have specialized in rat studies that show thimerosal damage.

Adverse events following 12 and 18 month vaccinations: a population-based, self-controlled case series analysis.

Correct citation: Wilson K, Hawken S, Kwong JC, Deeks S, Crowcroft NS, Van Walraven C, Potter BK, Chakraborty P, Keelan J, Pluscauskas M, Manuel D. Adverse events following 12 and 18 month vaccinations: a population-based, self-controlled case series analysis. PLoS One. 2011;6(12):e27897. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0027897. Epub 2011 Dec 12.

Study of adverse events after vaccines, but nothing to do with autism. “..one excess event for every 730 children vaccinated. The primary reason for increased events was statistically significant elevations in emergency room visits following all vaccinations. There were non-significant increases in hospital admissions. There were an additional 20 febrile seizures for every 100,000 vaccinated at 12 months.”

Risk Factors for Autistic Regression: Results of an Ambispective Cohort Study.

Correct citation: Zhang Y, Xu Q, Liu J, Li SC, Xu X. Risk factors for autistic regression: results of an ambispective cohort study. J Child Neurol. 2012 Aug;27(8):975-81. doi: 10.1177/0883073811430163. Epub 2012 Jan 30.

Cohort study on 170 Chinese children. Study does not mention vaccines.

Persistent behavioral impairments and alterations of brain dopamine system after early postnatal administration of thimerosal in rats.

Correct citation: Olczak M, Duszczyk M, Mierzejewski P, Meyza K, Majewska MD. Persistent behavioral impairments and alterations of brain dopamine system after early postnatal administration of thimerosal in rats. Behav Brain Res. 2011 Sep 30;223(1):107-18. doi: 10.1016/j.bbr.2011.04.026. Epub 2011 Apr 28.

Note: lead researcher M Dorota Majewska seems to have specialized in rat studies that show thimerosal damage.

Lasting neuropathological changes in rat brain after intermittent neonatal administration of thimerosal.

Correct citation: Olczak M, Duszczyk M, Mierzejewski P, Wierzba-Bobrowicz T, Majewska MD. Lasting neuropathological changes in rat brain after intermittent neonatal administration of thimerosal. Folia Neuropathol. 2010;48(4):258-69.

Rat study, thimerosal (no longer used in U.S. childhood vaccines except for some influenza vaccines), concentrations higher than formerly found in vaccines.

Note: lead researcher M Dorota Majewska seems to have specialized in rat studies that show thimerosal damage.

Ancestry of pink disease (infantile acrodynia) identified as a risk factor for autism spectrum disorders.

Correct citation: Shandley K, Austin DW. Ancestry of pink disease (infantile acrodynia) identified as a risk factor for autism spectrum disorders. J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2011;74(18):1185-94. doi: 10.1080/15287394.2011.590097.

Debunked at

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2011/07/30/ancestry-of-pink-disease-infantile-acrodynia-identified-as-a-risk-factor-for-autism-spectrum-disorders/

This is, at best, a very strange paper. Consider these questions:

1) Why aren’t they reporting a high autism prevalence in the people who had very high mercury exposures and who showed signs of pink disease? If there is a genetic susceptibility, why isn’t it seen in those with the greatest exposures?

2) Why isn’t there a report of high autism prevalence in the children, just the grandchildren? My guess is that the response from some will be that the grandchildren received higher doses of mercury in vaccines than did their parents. Which again would beg the question of where is the high rate of autism in those exposed to the teething powders, especially those who developed pink disease.

The conclusions of this paper have some major logical hurdles to overcome, to say the least. And this is even before the methods are addressed. For example, this all hinges on reports by the grandparents. Not on an actual prevalence measure of the descendants.

Theoretical aspects of autism: Causes—A review

Correct citation: Ratajczak HV. Theoretical aspects of autism: causes--a review. J Immunotoxicol. 2011 Jan-Mar;8(1):68-79.

This is one of the more risible papers in the list.

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2011/02/11/sloppy-science-a-perfect-example-of-how-the-anti-vaccine-crowd-will-listen-to-anything/

“The rest of the paper is a rogues gallery of debunked and fringe science. Helen Ratajczak cites the Geier’s numerous times, DeSoto and Hitlan, Nataf and Rossignol to name but a few. This isn’t a paper so much as an advert for the sort of poor science that was examined in the Autism Omnibus proceedings and roundly rejected by the Special Masters. For goodness sake, she even cites David Ayoub of the Black Helicopter infamy.”

http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/anti-vaccine-propaganda-from-sharyl-attkisson-of-cbs-news-2/

"How on earth did this get through peer review? Obviously, the peer reviewers of Dr. Ratajczak’s article were either completely ignorant of the background science (and therefore unqualified) or asleep at the switch."

http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/07/3-theoretical-aspects-of-autism-causes-a-review-2011.html

Vaccines and Autism

Correct citation, Rimland B, McGinnis W, Vaccines and Autism, Laboratory medicine, september 2002 9: 33 708-717

Downloaded from http://labmed.ascpjournals.org/content/33/9/708.full.pdfAutism Research Institute, San Diego, CA 7/27/2013

Laboratory Medicine, the journal for laboratory professionals. 11-year-old discursive article discussing the authors’ belief that something about the MMR vaccine and thimerosal is causal in autism. Later studies found no autism connection with either factor.

What's going on? The question of time trends in autism.

Correct citation: Blaxill MF. What's going on? The question of time trends in autism. Public Health Rep. 2004 Nov-Dec;119(6):536-51.

Review of survey literature available in years prior to 2004. Outdated and superceded by many more reliable publications.

Sensitization effect of thimerosal is mediated in vitro via reactive oxygen species and calcium signaling.

Correct Citation: Migdal C, Foggia L, Tailhardat M, Courtellemont P, Haftek M, Serres M. Sensitization effect of thimerosal is mediated in vitro via reactive oxygen species and calcium signaling. Toxicology. 2010 Jul-Aug;274(1-3):1-9. doi: 10.1016/j.tox.2010.04.016. Epub 2010 May 10.

In vitro study, thimerosal (no longer used in U.S. childhood vaccines except for some influenza vaccines), concentrations higher than formerly found in vaccines.

Mitochondrial dysfunction in autism spectrum disorders: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Rossignol DA, Frye RE Mitochondrial dysfunction in autism spectrum disorders: a systematic review and meta-analysis Molecular Psychiatry (2012) 17, 290–314; doi:10.1038/mp.2010.136; published online 25 January 2011

Review article, not study. This paper has nothing to do with vaccines. [needs additional attention]

Urinary Porphyrin Excretion in Neurotypical and Autistic Children

Correct citation: Woods JS, Armel SE, Fulton DI, Allen J, Wessels K, Simmonds PL, Granpeesheh D, Mumper E, Bradstreet JJ, Echeverria D, Heyer NJ, Rooney JP. 2010 Urinary porphyrin excretion in neurotypical and autistic children. Environ Health Perspect. 2010 Oct;118(10):1450-7. doi: 10.1289/ehp.0901713. Epub 2010 Jun 24.

It is an article of belief in some circles that urinary porphyrin excretion abnormalities is a biomarker for autism. However, the foundations of that belief rest upon studies performed by the disgraced and discredited Geier family (father and son).

The above article does not mention vaccines.

Sorting out the spinning of autism: heavy metals and the question of incidence

Correct citation: Desoto MC, Hitlan RT. Sorting out the spinning of autism: heavy metals and the question of incidence. Acta Neurobiol Exp (Wars). 2010;70(2):165-76.

Debunked at

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2010/08/03/prof-desoto-discusses-mercury-and-autism/

Note: This issue of Acta Neurobiologiae Experimentalis (ANE) focused upon autism. Not just autism, but autism causation with papers on vaccines, acetaminophen and, of course, mercury. The idea for this focus edition came from Professor Dorota Majewska who holds the EU Marie Curie Chair at the Institute of Psychiatry and Neurology in Warsaw, Poland. The authors for this focus issue are largely the same as those from a conference Prof. Majewska organized in 2008, Autism and Vaccinations.

Neonatal administration of a vaccine preservative, thimerosal, produces lasting impairment of nociception and apparent activation of opioid system in rats.

Olczak M, Duszczyk M, Mierzejewski P, Majewska MD. 2009 Neonatal administration of a vaccine preservative, thimerosal, produces lasting impairment of nociception and apparent activation of opioid system in rats. Brain Res. 2009 Dec 8;1301:143-51. doi: 10.1016/j.brainres.2009.09.003. Epub 2009 Sep 9.

Rat study, thimerosal (no longer used in U.S. childhood vaccines except for some influenza vaccines), concentrations higher than formerly found in vaccines.

Note: lead researcher M Dorota Majewska seems to have specialized in rat studies that show thimerosal damage.

Cultured lymphocytes from autistic children and non-autistic siblings up-regulate heat shock protein RNA in response to thimerosal challenge.

Correct citation: Walker SJ, Segal J, Aschner M. Cultured lymphocytes from autistic children and non-autistic siblings up-regulate heat shock protein RNA in response to thimerosal challenge. Neurotoxicology. 2006 Sep;27(5):685-92. Epub 2006 Jun 16.

An in-vitro cell study, thimerosal (no longer used in U.S. childhood vaccines except for some influenza vaccines), using concentrations higher than formerly found in vaccines.

Influence of pediatric vaccines on amygdala growth and opioid ligand binding in rhesus macaque infants: A pilot study

Correct citation: Hewitson L, Lopresti BJ, Stott C, Mason NS, Tomko J. Influence of pediatric vaccines on amygdala growth and opioid ligand binding in rhesus macaque infants: A pilot study. Acta Neurobiol Exp (Wars). 2010;70(2):147-64.

Another of the infamous, ever evolving Hewitson macaque papers.

Debunked at

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2010/07/16/too-much-vaccineautism-monkey-business-f/

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2010/07/16/the-genie-is-out-of-the-bottle-vaccines-cause-autism/

“This paper is generating quite a bit of interest in places like the Age of Autism blog. Unfortunately for them, this paper is not the genie getting out of the bottle. Just another low quality paper. Just another 16 monkeys giving their lives for nothing.”

For a complete history of the Hewitson macaque study and its various papers and authors, see:

http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/05/this-is-going-around-new-study-baby-monkeys-develop-autism-after-routine-cdc-vaccinations.html

Note: This issue of Acta Neurobiologiae Experimentalis (ANE) focused upon autism. Not just autism, but autism causation with papers on vaccines, acetaminophen and, of course, mercury. The idea for this focus edition came from Professor Dorota Majewska who holds the EU Marie Curie Chair at the Institute of Psychiatry and Neurology in Warsaw, Poland. The authors for this focus issue are largely the same as those from a conference Prof. Majewska organized in 2008, Autism and Vaccinations.

Mercury induces inflammatory mediator release from human mast cells

Correct citation: Kempuraj D, Asadi S, Zhang B, Manola A, Hogan J, Peterson E, Theoharides TC. Mercury induces inflammatory mediator release from human mast cells. J Neuroinflammation. 2010 Mar 11;7:20. doi: 10.1186/1742-2094-7-20.

In-vitro study of mercuric chloride (HgCl2) , not ethyl mercury or thimerosal. Does not “show vaccines cause autism”.

Induction of metallothionein in mouse cerebellum and cerebrum with low-dose thimerosal injection.

Correct citation: Minami T, Miyata E, Sakamoto Y, Yamazaki H, Ichida S. Induction of metallothionein in mouse cerebellum and cerebrum with low-dose thimerosal injection. Cell Biol Toxicol. 2010 Apr;26(2):143-52. doi: 10.1007/s10565-009-9124-z. Epub 2009 Apr 9.

Studies in mice using a carrier medium. Does not prove that autism is caused by vaccination, with or without thimerosal.

Hepatitis B triple series vaccine and developmental disability in US children aged 1-9 years

Correct citation: Gallagher C, Goodman M 2008. Toxicol Environ Chem 2008 90(5):997-1008. DOI:10.1080/02772240701806501

A later study found that children with ASD had a lower uptake of HepB.

https://imfar.confex.com/imfar/2013/webprogram/Paper12796.html

http://www.harpocratesspeaks.com/2013/05/mind-institute-no-difference-in.html

Glutathione, oxidative stress and neurodegeneration

Correct citation: Schulz JB, Lindenau J, Seyfried J, Dichgans J. Glutathione, oxidative stress and neurodegeneration. Eur J Biochem. 2000 Aug;267(16):4904-11.

This study does not discuss vaccination or autism.

Thimerosal exposure in infants and neurodevelopmental disorders: An assessment of computerized medical records in the Vaccine Safety Datalink.

Correct citation: Young HA, Geier DA, Geier MR. Thimerosal exposure in infants and neurodevelopmental disorders: an assessment of computerized medical records in the Vaccine Safety Datalink. J Neurol Sci. 2008 Aug 15;271(1-2):110-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jns.2008.04.002. Epub 2008 May 15.

This paper has to be one of the most thoroughly scrutinized (and debunked) of all the papers that claim a connection between vaccines and autism.

http://epiwonk.com/?p=55

http://epiwonk.com/?p=57

http://epiwonk.com/?p=59

http://bmartinmd.com/2008/05/irb-approval-of-geier-autism-s.html

http://bmartinmd.com/2008/05/ive-been-sucked-into-the-thime.html

http://bmartinmd.com/2008/05/young-geier-autism-study-1.html

http://bmartinmd.com/2008/05/young-geier-autism-study-2.html

http://bmartinmd.com/2008/05/young-geier-autism-study-3.html

http://bmartinmd.com/2008/05/young-geier-autism-study-4.html

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2006/10/10/mark-geier-david-geier-and-the-vsd/

http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/why-the-latest-geier-geier-paper-is-not-evidence-that-mercury-in-vaccines-causes-autism/

Pediatric Vaccines Influence Primate Behavior, and Amygdala Growth and Opioid Ligand Binding Friday, May 16, 2008: IMFAR

This was one of three poster presentations at the 2008 meeting of the International Meeting for Autism Research (IMFAR) by Hewiston and others (including Wakefield) on a set of primates (macaque monkeys, species unknown). The “monkey mess” is summarized here

http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/05/this-is-going-around-new-study-baby-monkeys-develop-autism-after-routine-cdc-vaccinations.html

Others write about Hewitson’s research peccadillos here (a non-exhaustive list):

http://theness.com/neurologicablog/index.php/terrible-anti-vaccine-study-terrible-reporting/

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2010/07/16/too-much-vaccineautism-monkey-business-f/

http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/monkey-business-in-autism-research/

Possible Immunological Disorders in Autism: Concomitant Autoimmunity and Immune Tolerance

Correct citation: Kawashti MI, Amin OR, Rowehy NG. Possible immunological disorders in autism: concomitant autoimmunity and immune tolerance. Egypt J Immunol. 2006;13(1):99-104.

Study does not mention vaccines. Study has not been replicated.

[needs additional attention]

Mitochondrial mediated thimerosal-induced apoptosis in a human neuroblastoma cell line (SK-N-SH).

Correct citation: Humphrey ML, Cole MP, Pendergrass JC, Kiningham KK. Mitochondrial mediated thimerosal-induced apoptosis in a human neuroblastoma cell line (SK-N-SH).Neurotoxicology. 2005 Jun;26(3):407-16.

In-vitro study.

[needs additional attention]

Thimerosal induces neuronal cell apoptosis by causing cytochrome c and apoptosis-inducing factor release from mitochondria.

Correct citation: Yel L, Brown LE, Su K, Gollapudi S, Gupta S. Thimerosal induces neuronal cell apoptosis by causing cytochrome c and apoptosis-inducing factor release from mitochondria. Int J Mol Med. 2005 Dec;16(6):971-7.

Another in-vitro study.

[needs additional attention]

Epidemiology of autism spectrum disorder in Portugal: prevalence, clinical characterization, and medical conditions

Correct citation: Oliveira G, Ataíde A, Marques C, Miguel TS, Coutinho AM, Mota-Vieira L, Gonçalves E, Lopes NM, Rodrigues V, Carmona da Mota H, Vicente AM. Epidemiology of autism spectrum disorder in Portugal: prevalence, clinical characterization, and medical conditions. Dev Med Child Neurol. 2007 Oct;49(10):726-33.

I was puzzled as to why this was included, but the survey found "A diversity of associated medical conditions was documented in 20%, with an unexpectedly high rate of mitochondrial respiratory chain disorders." Poling and others have used this finding to claim that "up to 20% of children with autism have mitochondrial disorders".

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Proximity to point sources of environmental mercury release as a predictor of autism prevalence

Correct citation: Palmer RF, Blanchard S, Wood R. Proximity to point sources of environmental mercury release as a predictor of autism prevalence. Health Place. 2009 Mar;15(1):18-24. Epub 2008 Feb 12.

A deeply flawed paper.

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2008/05/01/wait-its-not-mercury-in-vaccines-its-mer/

“If [Palmer] has an obvious source of bias, it may well explain much; if he does not I’m left with the less satisfying conclusion that he is just not a very good scientist at all. I also have to wonder about the quality of the peer review of this particular journal. After all, if I, who am not an epidemiologist, can spot the glaring flaws in this study, why couldn’t the peer reviewers?”

Evidence of Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Autism and Implications for Treatment

Correct citation:, Rossignol, DA, Bradstreet JJ 2008. Evidence of Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Autism and Implications for Treatment Am J Biochem Biotechn 2008 4 (2): 208-217.

This study has nothing to do with vaccines.

[needs additional attention]

Note: this and other papers in this issue were published in a special issue of the American Journal of Biochemistry and Biotechnology, supported by Autism Speaks.

http://www.autismspeaks.org/science/science-news/american-journal-biochemistry-and-biotechnology

Heavy-Metal Toxicity—With Emphasis on Mercury

Correct citation: Neustadt J, Pieczenik, S 2007 Heavy-Metal Toxicity – With Emphasis on Mercury (Research Review) 2007 IMJC 6(2) 26-32 (https://stevepieczenik.com/pdf/Heavy%20Metals%20Article.pdf accessed 7/27/13)

This is an article from a fringe journal for naturopaths. The article is alarmist about amalgam fillings as a risk of mercury toxicity, but nowhere mentions vaccines.

Bridging from Cells to Cognition in Autism Pathophysiology: Biological Pathways to Defective Brain Function and Plasticity

Anderson MP, Hooker BS, Herbert MR, 2008 Bridging from Cells to Cognition in Autism Pathophysiology: Biological Pathways to Defective Brain Function and Plasticity. Am J Biochem Biotechn 2008 4 (2): 167-176.. DOI: 10.3844/ajbbsp.2008.167.176

Speculative article on the possible non-genetic causation mechanisms for autism. Vaccines, vaccination, immunization not mentioned in the article.

Note: this and other papers in this issue were published in a special issue of the American Journal of Biochemistry and Biotechnology, supported by Autism Speaks.

http://www.autismspeaks.org/science/science-news/american-journal-biochemistry-and-biotechnology

Mitochondrial Energy-Deficient Endophenotype in Autism

Correct citation Gargus JJ, Imtias F Am J Biochem Biotechn 2008 4 (2): 198-207.

Vaccines not mentioned in the article. Discussion of possible rare subtype(s) of autism with genetic mutations causing mitochondrial deficiencies.

Note: this and other papers in this issue were published in a special issue of the American Journal of Biochemistry and Biotechnology, supported by Autism Speaks.

http://www.autismspeaks.org/science/science-news/american-journal-biochemistry-and-biotechnology

The Changing Prevalence of Autism In California

Correct Citation: Blaxill MF, Baskin DS, Spitzer WO Commentary on on Croen et al. (2002), The Changing Prevalence of Autism in California, J Autism Dev Disord. 2003 April;33(2):223-226

This is merely a commentary on a previously published article. Not peer reviewed and expresses the authors’ own rather biased beliefs.

A Case Series of Children with Apparent Mercury Toxic Encephalopathies Manifesting with Clinical Symptoms of Regressive Autistic Disorder

Correct Citation: Geier DA, Geier MR., A case series of children with apparent mercury toxic encephalopathies manifesting with clinical symptoms of regressive autistic disorders. J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2007 May 15;70(10):837-51.

How anyone could cite the deeply discredited Geier family (father and son) is beyond me.

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2006/06/20/mark-geier-and-david-geier-carry-on-misrepresenting/

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2006/10/10/mark-geier-david-geier-and-the-vsd/

That’s just this paper. Others from the father-son team garnered even more scathing criticism.

Reduced levels of mercury in first baby haircuts of autistic children

Correct citation: Holmes AS, Blaxill MF, Haley BE. Reduced levels of mercury in first baby haircuts of autistic children. Int J Toxicol. 2003 Jul-Aug;22(4):277-85.

The fatally flawed baby-hair study.

The first flaw in the study is the authors' acceptance of the idea of "excretion into the hair". It doesn't happen. Blood mercury does not equal hair mercury.

The second flaw is the data collection methods (the hair used in the study )

The third flaw is that the study found that the autistic children had lower hair mercury levels than the neurotypical controls. Rather than accepting that data, the authors went on to spin "tooth fairy tales" to explain why that might be so (the idea that autistic children had impaired mercury excretion). The fourth flaw in the study involves the hair analyzed: the samples had been in storage under unknown conditions for a median of five and a half years.

Do I really need to go on why Holmes et al. is a broken reed? I don't think so. It was, when published, a footling study. Anyone citing it, reveals their lack of in serious science writing. Holmes et al. 2003 isn't even a weak reed -- it's an over-cooked noodle.

But wait: One more thing you should know: Holmes et al. 2003 authors' affiliations are given as Safeminds. Safeminds is an acronym for Sensible Action For Ending Mercury Induced Neurological Disorders. Do you think the authors had an ideological point to make?

Discussion

http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2011/09/that-baby-hair-study-from-2003.html

This study has nothing to do with vaccines.

Environmental mercury release, special education rates, and autism disorder: an ecological study of Texas

Correct citation: Palmer RF, Blanchard S, Stein Z, Mandell D, Miller C. Environmental mercury release, special education rates, and autism disorder: an ecological study of Texas. Health Place. 2006 Jun;12(2):203-9.

“Dr. Palmer’s 2006 study, which was so full of holes that even antivaccinationists had a hard time defending it,”

This study has nothing to do with vaccines.

Enrichment of Elevated Plasma F2t-Isoprostane Levels in Individuals with Autism Who Are Stratified by Presence of Gastrointestinal Dysfunction

PLoS ONE 8(7): e68444. Gorrindo P, Lane CJ, Lee EB, McLaughlin B, Levitt P (July 3, 2013)

This study has nothing to do with vaccines.

[needs additional attention]

Aluminum adjuvant linked to gulf war illness induces motor neuron death in mice

Correct citation: Petrik MS, Wong MC, Tabata RC, Garry RF, Shaw CA. Aluminum adjuvant linked to Gulf War illness induces motor neuron death in mice. Neuromolecular Med. 2007;9(1):83-100.

Mice model, not a human study.

[needs additional attention]

Thimerosal Neurotoxicity is Associated with Glutathione Depletion: Protection with Glutathione Precursors

Correct citation: James SJ, Slikker W 3rd, Melnyk S, New E, Pogribna M, Jernigan S. Thimerosal neurotoxicity is associated with glutathione depletion: protection with glutathione precursors. Neurotoxicology. 2005 Jan;26(1):1-8.

Another in-vitro study with a concentration of thimerosal (no longer used in childhood vaccines in the U.S., with the exception of some flu vaccines) much higher than in vaccines.

[needs additional attention]

Oxidative Stress in Autism

Correct citation: Chauhan A, Chauhan V. Oxidative stress in autism. Pathophysiology. 2006 Aug;13(3):171-81. Epub 2006 Jun 12.

This is a review article, summarizing the research to date on oxidative stress in autism and some implications for therapies. The conclusion:

Preliminary results of some of clinical trials have suggested improved behavior in individuals with autism who receive antioxidant therapy.

Does this paper "demonstrate that vaccines can cause autism"? No.

Evidence of Toxicity, Oxidative Stress, and Neuronal Insult in Autism

Correct citation: Kern JK, Jones AM. Evidence of toxicity, oxidative stress, and neuronal insult in autism. J Toxicol Environ Health B Crit Rev. 2006 Nov-Dec;9(6):485-99.

Does this paper "demonstrate that vaccines can cause autism"? No, this is a review paper rather that a randomized, controlled study of vaccines in autism.

Kern is a co-author on 31 papers. It is worrying that of those, two are positive studies on secretin and 14 have one or both Geiers as co-authors, including two from 2012 and one from 2011. In 2012, she was employed by the Geier chemical-castration-for-autism chain.

Large Brains in Autism: The Challenge of Pervasive Abnormality

Correct citation: Herbert MR. Large brains in autism: the challenge of pervasive abnormality. Neuroscientist. 2005 Oct;11(5):417-40.
http://masslawyersweekly.com/fulltext-opinions/2006/08/21/macgregor-et-al-v-annette-born-et-al/

“Clearly, Dr. Herbert’s method is not generally accepted in the scientific community. Dr. Herbert’s theory of environmental triggers of autism may some day prove true. It has not yet.”

This paper has nothing to do with vaccines.

Oxidative Stress in Autism: Elevated Cerebellar 3-nitrotyrosine Levels

Correct Citation: Sajdel-Sulkowska, E.M., B. Lipinski, H. Windom, T. Audhya and W. McGinnis, 2008. Oxidative Stress in Autism: Elevated Cerebellar 3-nitrotyrosine Levels. Am. J. Biochem. Biotechnol., 73-84. DOI : 10.3844/ajbbsp.2008.73.84

This study has nothing to do with vaccines.

[needs additional attention]

Developmental Regression and Mitochondrial Dysfunction in a Child With Autism

Correct citation: Poling JS, Frye RE, Shoffner J, Zimmerman AW. Developmental regression and mitochondrial dysfunction in a child with autism. J Child Neurol. 2006 Feb;21(2):170-2.

The scandalous Poling paper:

http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/07/13-developmental-regression-and-mitochondrial-dysfunction-in-a-child-with-autism-2006-.html

With "Developmental Regression and Mitochondrial Dysfunction in a Child with Autism", Dr. Jon Poling takes his place with Dr. Andrew Wakefield, Dr. Mark Geier and Laura Hewitson, Ph.D. in the ranks of researchers who have concealed relevant legal and financial interests in studies purporting to confirm a causal relationship between vaccines and autism.

In short: Dr. Poling behaved in an appalling manner. There is no question that Hannah Poling has a mitochondrial disorder; in such cases neurological symptoms often develop after 12 months and before 24 months. The "autistic like" symptoms demonstrated by Hannah Poling were part of a global encephalopathy caused by a mitochondrial enzyme deficit.

Does this case or this paper "demonstrate that vaccines can cause autism"? No.

Empirical Data Confirm Autism Symptoms Related to Aluminum and Acetaminophen Exposure

Correct citation: Seneff S, Davidson RM, Liu J, Empirical Data Confirm Autism Symptoms Related to Aluminum and Acetaminophen Exposure Entropy 2012, 14(11), 2227-2253; doi:10.3390/e14112227

This shoddy and incompetent paper was discussed at length at:

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2012/11/20/dumpster-diving-in-the-vaers-database-again/

Blood Levels of Mercury Are Related to Diagnosis of Autism: A Reanalysis of an Important Data Set

Correct citation: Desoto MC, Hitlan RT. Blood levels of mercury are related to diagnosis of autism: a reanalysis of an important data set. J Child Neurol. 2007 Nov;22(11):1308-11.

The infamous Desoto & Hitlan paper. This was subject to a great deal of critical commentary among scientifically and statistically expert autism parents and other interested observers, for example:

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2008/07/16/epiwonk-reanalyzes-the-dataset-desoto-an/ http://epiwonk.com/?p=112

Summary of the demolition:

http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/07/12-blood-levels-of-mercury-are-related-to-diagnosis-of-autism-a-reanalysis-of-an-important-data-set-.html

More later at

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2010/08/03/prof-desoto-discusses-mercury-and-autism/

Validation of the Phenomenon of Autistic Regression Using Home Videotapes

Correct citation: Werner E, Dawson G. Validation of the phenomenon of autistic regression using home videotapes. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2005 Aug;62(8):889-95.

The phenomenon of regression in autism is well-known, and in no way validates the idea that vaccines are causal in autism.

Discussion:

http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/07/11-validation-of-the-phenomenon-of-autistic-regression-using-home-videotapes-2005-.html

A later Bearman paper characterizes six developmental trajectories in autism

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22473372

Activation of Methionine Synthase by Insulin-like Growth Factor-1 and Dopamine: a Target for Neurodevelopmental Toxins and Thimerosal

Correct citation : Waly M, Olteanu H, Banerjee R, Choi SW, Mason JB, Parker BS, Sukumar S, Shim S, Sharma A, Benzecry JM, Power-Charnitsky VA, Deth RC, Activation of methionine synthase by insulin-like growth factor-1 and dopamine: a target for neurodevelopmental toxins and thimerosal. Mol Psychiatry. 2004 Apr;9(4):358-70.

The 2010 Dwyer decision:

[Deth's] own research, most of which was unpublished, unduplicated, or mentioned for the first time during the Theory 2 general causation hearing, was poorly performed and scientifically implausible. Based on in vitro effects of mercury on “neuronal cells,” he claimed that mercury had the same effects on human brain cells.

Discussion in depth:

http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/07/10-activation-of-methionine-synthase-by-insulin-like-growth-factor-1-and-dopamine-a-target-for-neuro.html

Autism: A Brain Disorder, or A Disorder That Affects the Brain?

Correct citation: Herbert MR, Autism: A Brain Disorder, or A Disorder That Affects the Brain? Clinical Neuropsychiatry 2005 2:(6) 354-379

This is a long opinion piece, draped in sciencey-sounding language. Does this paper "demonstrate that vaccines can cause autism"? No. This paper is merely Herbert's notions about causation.

Neuroglial Activation and Neuroinflammation in the Brain of Patients with Autism

Correct citation: Vargas DL, Nascimbene C, Krishnan C, Zimmerman AW, Pardo CA, Neuroglial activation and neuroinflammation in the brain of patients with autism. Ann Neurol. 2005 Jan;57(1):67-81.

The lead author wrote,

We were concerned that the study would raise a lot of controversy and be misused,” Pardo said. “We were right.”

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2009/11/23/autism-treatment-science-hijacked-to-support-alternative-therapies/

More analysis

http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/07/8-neuroglial-activation-and-neuroinflammation-in-the-brain-of-patients-with-autism-2005-.html

Also, nothing to do with vaccines.

Increases in the number of reactive glia in the visual cortex of Macaca fascicularis following subclinical long-term methyl mercury exposure.

Correct citation: Charleston JS, Bolender RP, Mottet NK, Body RL, Vahter ME, Burbacher TM. Increases in the number of reactive glia in the visual cortex of Macaca fascicularis following subclinical long-term methyl mercury exposure. Toxicol Appl Pharmacol. 1994 Dec;129(2):196-206.

Discusses a form of mercury, methyl mercury, NEVER used in vaccines.

http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/07/7-increases-in-the-number-of-reactive-glia-in-the-visual-cortex-of-macaca-fascicularis-following-sub.html The monkeys were exposed to very high doses (50 micrograms Hg/kg body wt/day) every day for months.

There is no research linking increased reactive glia in the visual cortex to autism.

Comparison of Blood and Brain Mercury Levels in Infant Monkeys Exposed to Methylmercury or Vaccines Containing Thimerosal

Correct citation: Burbacher TM, Shen DD, Liberato N, Grant KS, Cernichiari E, Clarkson T. Comparison of blood and brain mercury levels in infant monkeys exposed to methylmercury or vaccines containing thimerosal. Environ Health Perspect. 2005 Aug;113(8):1015-21.

Discusses methylmercury, not ethylmercury, the latter of which is thimerosal (which is no longer used in childhood vaccines in the U.S. other than the flu vaccine). Widely debunked.

http://bartholomewcubbins.blogspot.com/2007/01/bc-on-autism-revisiting-burbacher-2005.html

http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/07/6-comparison-of-blood-and-brain-mercury-levels-in-infant-monkeys-exposed-to-methylmercury-or-vaccine.html

Uncoupling of ATP-mediated Calcium Signaling and Dysregulated IL-6 Secretion in Dendritic Cells by Nanomolar Thimerosal

Correct citation: Goth SR, Chu RA, Gregg JP, Cherednichenko G, Pessah IN. Uncoupling of ATP-mediated calcium signaling and dysregulated interleukin-6 secretion in dendritic cells by nanomolar thimerosal. Environ Health Perspect. 2006 Jul;114(7):1083-91.

In-vitro study of mouse cells exposed to trace (nano) amounts of thimerosal.

Discussion

http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/07/4-uncoupling-of-atp-mediated-calcium-signaling-and-dysregulated-interleukin-6-secretion-in-dendritic.html

Never-replicated

Porphyrinuria in childhood autistic disorder: Implications for environmental toxicity

Correct citation: Nataf R, Skorupka C, Amet L, Lam A, Springbett A, Lathe R. Porphyrinuria in childhood autistic disorder: implications for environmental toxicity. Toxicol Appl Pharmacol. 2006 Jul 15;214(2):99-108. Epub 2006 Jun 16. Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology, 2006

“Extremely haphazard science”

Discussion
http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/07/2porphyrinuria-in-childhood-autistic-disorder-implications-for-environmental-toxicity-2006.html

Also has nothing to do with vaccines.

Metabolic biomarkers of increased oxidative stress and impaired methylation capacity in children with autism

Correct citation: James SJ, Cutler P, Melnyk S, Jernigan S, Janak L, Gaylor DW, Neubrander JA. Metabolic biomarkers of increased oxidative stress and impaired methylation capacity in children with autism. Am J Clin Nutr. 2004 Dec;80(6):1611-7.

Nothing to do with vaccines.

Serological association of measles virus and human herpesvirus-6 with brain autoantibodies in autism.

Correct citation Singh VK, Lin SX, Yang VC. Serological association of measles virus and human herpesvirus-6 with brain autoantibodies in autism. Clin Immunol Immunopathol. 1998 Oct;89(1):105-8.

Note that this paper is from 1998. Singh’s work has not been replicated. Multiple studies in multiple countries with tens of thousands of subjects have repeatedly failed to find an association between measles vaccine and autism.

http://www.immunizationinfo.org/issues/iom-reports/measles-mumps-rubella-vaccine-and-autism

http://www.immunizationinfo.org/science/no-evidence-mmr-vaccine-causes-autism

Abnormal measles-mumps-rubella antibodies and CNS autoimmunity in children with autism.

Correct citation: Singh VK, Lin SX, Newell E, Nelson C. Abnormal measles-mumps-rubella antibodies and CNS autoimmunity in children with autism. J Biomed Sci. 2002 Jul-Aug;9(4):359-64.J Biomed Sci. 2002 Jul-Aug;9(4):359-64.

Singh’s work has not been replicated. Multiple studies in multiple countries with tens of thousands of subjects have repeatedly failed to find an association between measles vaccine and autism.

http://www.immunizationinfo.org/issues/iom-reports/measles-mumps-rubella-vaccine-and-autism

http://www.immunizationinfo.org/science/no-evidence-mmr-vaccine-causes-autism

B-Lymphocytes from a Population of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Their Unaffected Siblings Exhibit Hypersensitivity to Thimerosal

Correct citation: Sharpe MA, Taylor LG, Baskin DS B-Lymphocytes from a Population of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Their Unaffected Siblings Exhibit Hypersensitivity to Thimerosal J Toxicol. 2013;2013:801517. doi: 10.1155/2013/801517. Epub 2013 Jun 9.

In vitro study, thimerosal (no longer used in U.S. childhood vaccines except for some influenza vaccines), concentrations higher than formerly found in vaccines. Only 11 families studied.

A Positive Association found between Autism Prevalence and Childhood Vaccination uptake across the U.S. Population

Correct citation: Delong G., A positive association found between autism prevalence and childhood vaccination uptake across the U.S. population. J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2011;74(14):903-16. doi: 10.1080/15287394.2011.573736.

Junk “science” debunked here, for starters

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2011/07/08/a-positive-association-found-between-autism-prevalence-and-childhood-vaccination-uptake-across-the-u-s-population-2/

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2011/06/11/speech-impairment-and-autism-inseparable/

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2012/03/07/conflicts-of-interest-in-vaccine-safety-research/

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2011/06/08/more-bad-science-in-the-service-of-the-discredited-idea/

Infection, vaccines and other environmental triggers of autoimmunity

Correct citation: Molina V, Shoenfeld Y. Infection, vaccines and other environmental triggers of autoimmunity. Autoimmunity. 2005 May;38(3):235-45.

Nothing to do with autism; also seems to be a discursive paper rather than a “research study”.

Do aluminum vaccine adjuvants contribute to the rising prevalence of autism?

Correct citation: Tomljenovic L, Shaw CA. Do aluminum vaccine adjuvants contribute to the rising prevalence of autism? J Inorg Biochem. 2011 Nov;105(11):1489-99. doi: 10.1016/j.jinorgbio.2011.08.008. Epub 2011 Aug 23.

Fatally flawed “study” – junk science. Debunked at:

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2013/07/10/comment-on-do-aluminum-vaccine-adjuvants-contribute-to-the-rising-prevalence-of-autism/

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2011/12/08/and-global-warming-is-caused-by-the-decr/

Hepatitis B Vaccination of Male Neonates and Autism

Correct citation: Gallager CM, Goodman MS, Hepatitis B vaccination of male neonates and autism diagnosis, NHIS 1997-2002. J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2010;73:(24):1665-77.

Very weak study with numerous flaws. Debunked at: http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2009/09/17/another-weak-study-proves-vaccines-cause-autism/

http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2010/09/16/autism-causation-and-the-hepatitis-b-vaccine-no-link/

http://www.harpocratesspeaks.com/2013/05/mind-institute-no-difference-in.html

http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/07/1-hepatitis-b-vaccination-of-male-neonates-and-autism-diagnosis-nhis-1997-2002-2010.html