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.
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.