May 19, 2007

Johnson & Johnson Clears Their Own Product of Autism Link

(as you read keep in mind Big Tobacco's claims of "no link to lung cancer")

I am sure that if you have viewed a news source this week you have seen that mercury in vaccines has once again been cleared of any link to autism. Articles also state, "Shows over, nothing to see here, move along now... the grown ups need to talk."

This study was done in 2005. So why the big release two years later? Some have suggested that it is because the Vaccine Omnibus Hearings that will actually look at the link and make a decision as to the veracity of vaccine safety claimes will start next month.

Billions and Billions of dollars will be lost by corporations if a link is established.

So here is the story behind the story by an actual chemist who understands mercury, and the initial response from SafeMinds, who will be releasing a full review of the study later.

The mercury, Autism Debacle: Another Week, Another Questionable Study
Michael Wagnitz
May 18, 2007

Another week, another study in which a Doctor tells us mercury in vaccines is safe. Only this time, vaccines were not even part of the study. The headline from the University of Missouri states, "Study Finds No Link Between Autism and Thimerosal in Vaccines". The study looked at injection during pregnancy with Rh immune globulin (Rhig) and its link to autism. Up until 2001 some of these injections contained thimerosal (50% mercury). This is not a vaccine just like a shot of penicillin is not a vaccine. This story was picked up by 72 news agencies. Not one news story mentioned that the study was funded by Johnson and Johnson, the largest manufacturer of Rhig products. Johnson and Johnson just happens to be a defendant in several lawsuits involving the use of thimerosal in their Rhig products. Does anyone really think they would fund a study which says thmerosal in Rhig products causes autism?

What's more amazing is this is old news. The lead author of the study presented her findings in a poster session in 2005 at a genetics conference. This story was all over the news wires back then. Originally, it was stated that the study contained 47 mothers with more than one child with autism. The published study lists only 16 such cases. Where did the other 31 cases go? Did they just disappear because they did not support her conclusion? Is this proper scientific ethics? This "data adjusting" is becoming quite common by mainstream autism researchers.

In her paper she states that the "vast majority of studies indicate no association between thimerosal containing vaccines and autism". The papers she cites are either conflicted epidemiological studies or literature reviews which regurgitate these same studies. One paper cited, Nelson and Bauman 2003, was a paper solicited by Pediatrics to say that thimerosal does not cause autism. This paper was received and published on the same day. Did this paper even go through the peer review process? This paper is infamous for stating that ethyl mercury does not enter the brain. This statement has been disproven by volumes of published research. She cites the 2004 Institute of Medicine (IOM) position paper which ignored all the clinical evidence which differed with their pre-determined conclusion. This expert IOM committee, which looked at thimerosal's role in causing harm, did not include one single toxicologist. Every member had ties to the vaccine industry.

As a major player in the autism is a psychiatric condition caused by some unknown gene, the author knows that billions of dollars in research money is out there to be had. What will become of these "mercury apologists" if these kids ever receive proper treatment for what is causing their illness? Their multi-million dollars of funding will dry up. Their arrogant, controlling power trips will be over. They will become irrelevant.

About the Author: Michael Wagnitz has over 20 years experience evaluating materials for toxic metals. He currently works as a chemist in the toxicology section of a public health lab evaluating biological samples for lead and mercury.

Here is SafeMinds response to the study:

University of Missouri Study on Link Between Autism and Mercury a Discredit to Sound Science
May 16, 2007
(714) 625-5663

Undisclosed industry funding, unsubstantiated conclusions on vaccines, and study sample alteration undermine credibility on controversial topic.

(Cambridge, MA) A recent press release from the University of Missouri announced the results of a study on autism and Rh immune globulin (RhIg) injections, some of which contained a mercury preservative called thimerosal. SafeMinds reviewed information about this study and found several troublesome aspects, including undisclosed industry funding, unsubstantiated conclusions on vaccines and mercury, and deviation from acceptable scientific practice.

The study was funded by Johnson & Johnson, the largest manufacturer of RhIg products and the defendant in several lawsuits alleging a link between autism and mercury in RhIg. In an earlier 2005 poster presentation, the study authors acknowledged that the research was “supported by Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceutical Research,” but the University of Missouri press release omits mention of this conflict of interest.

The press release headline falsely claims that the “Study Finds No Link Between Autism and Thimerosal in Vaccines.” The study is about Rh immune globulin, and immune globulins are not vaccines. “The headline deceives the public,” noted Mark Blaxill, director of SafeMinds. “It says an autism-mercury in vaccines link has been disproved when the research did not do so.” In fact, the study failed to differentiate between mothers who received RhIg brands with mercury and those receiving the brand without mercury, rendering assessment of mercury’s role in autism from RhIg indeterminate.

Changes to the research sample were made in the middle of the study. The 2005 sample contained 47 mothers with more than one child with autism, while the final 2007 study only had 16 mothers with more than one child with autism. The elimination of 31 ‘multiplex’ families means that the original sample was altered, and not just added to, after initial results were obtained in contradiction of standard research practice meant to prevent manipulation of findings.

“An earlier analysis by SafeMinds of the poster presentation revealed numerous flaws in methods, analysis and interpretation,” stated Mr. Blaxill. “We are concerned many of these flaws have not been corrected and quite possibly have been amplified in the published paper. While the poster results demonstrated an increased risk of autism in thimerosal-exposed children, the written interpretation of the data claimed the opposite.”

Once SafeMinds has the opportunity to review the full paper, a full assessment will be completed. SafeMinds calls for unbiased studies on the potential link between autism and mercury exposures. More information on this study is available at

See also:

Rh Immune Globulin in Pregnancy: Relationship to Autism Development

Overview [PDF File, 42K]

Study Abstract [PDF File, 20K]


Anonymous said...

Mrs. Smith? Beautiful baby you have there! Congratulations! There, now, up we go baby! No, no, no cause for alarm Mrs. Smith! We're going to give your precious baby his health! Of course! Oh goodness no! Safer than water. Really? Hmmm. Well, you do know we DEMAND this of you, dear. I mean really, all the other GOOD mommies just hand us their babies. Yes, I've heard your question. Sigh... All right. For goodness sake you ARE wasting my time and I've many other more agreeable Mothers to see to give their babies their own health-- Oh all right. Here, I'll read it. Aluminium. Thimerosal. Yes, Mrs. Smith, it IS 50% mercury but it's the safe kind, honest to PETE you have so many naggy little questions. Egg product. Antibiotic. No, not human embryo. EGG, dear from a chicken. Yes, I KNOW we tell you not to feed your child eggs until a year old. This isn't the same. Yes, I know its still a chicken egg. Oh for God's sake, would you PLEASE just hand me your baby? You know, he won't ever be able to go to Kindergarten, Mrs. Smith? That's a good girl, come on little baby. What?? Oh, that sharp crying should subside in a few days. Think nothing of it dear. Nothing at all. Can I bring you a water, dear, you look a little pale.

Do'C said...

"Thimerosal. Yes, Mrs. Smith, it IS 50% mercury but it's the safe kind, honest to PETE you have so many naggy little questions."

Poor Mr. Wagnitz didn't get this right either. Thimerosal is about 50% mercury by molecular weight, it is not 50% mercury as in 2cc = 1cc of mercury. Not even close. Now please tell us what thimerosal's 50% mercury by molecular weight means in terms of toxicity to humans. Does toxicity even have anything to do with molecular weight?

Mike Wagnitz has dropped by to comment at the following posts.

A Hot Cup Of Jack Squat
Wagnitz Pours A Second Cup
“Hazardous Waste” Mike

I'd encourage anyone to read the posts and his comments and then see if they think he's

"an actual chemist who understands mercury" with respect to autism.