Why Wakefield and the MMR story is only partially true at best
Thanks to a number of ‘modern world’ factors, the gut microbiome of children is damaged like no generation before. Damaged from before birth, damaged during birth, damaged after birth. And by the time the MMR vaccine comes along, it is little more than the ‘coup de grace’ for these children.
Autism and the gut
A lot is now understood about autism.
Kids with autism often have severe gut problems – for example, they are twice as likely as children with other types of disorders to have frequent diarrhoea or colitis, an inflammation of the large intestine. GI problems are frequent anyway in children with autism; pain and constipation are more common.
A study(1) by Rosa Krajmalnik-Brown and Jin Gyoon of Arizona State’s Biodesign Unit researchers showed that kids with autism had a greatly reduced spectrum of gut bacteria. One in particular, Prevotella, was missing completely.
Research studies (and there are many) have clearly indicated that poor levels of gut bacteria can trigger inflammation which reaches the brain.
Many children nowadays have a damaged gut microbiome
So how does damage (typically a lowered volume and lowered diversity of commensal or ‘good’ bacteria) occur in the infant gut?
A healthy baby picks up bacteria largely in three ways
1. By passing through the birth canal
2. By being breast fed
3. By bacteria from mother’s illness: Surprisingly, the womb is not inert and bacteria have also been shown to be picked up from, for example, type-2 diabetic mothers.
So, it is likely that there is a matrix of factors causing lowered commensal bacteria and heightened pathogens – for example,
i. Babies born to mothers with abnormal vaginal bacteria (due to drugs, prescribed or otherwise, or even stress). One study showed that expectant mothers who had taken antibiotics in the year before conceiving had babies with less commensal bacteria.
ii. Babies born by Caesarian clearly have less ‘good’ guys.
iii. Children having antibiotics early in life have damage.
iv. Babies not breast fed.
v. Babies born to mothers who are ‘ill’.
So these factors and more can leave young children with less good guys and more pathogens, especially since the prime bacteria gained from a healthy mother who is breast feeding are strains of Bifidobacterium and these are very strong in their control of pathogens in the first 6 to 12 months of life.
Gut bacteria ‘control’ your immune system
Your gut bacteria control 85 per cent of your immune system and immune memory. This happens through an ‘action and reaction’ system. A child touches the dog and then sucks her fingers immediately introducing new bacteria into the body. There’s a reaction, and new ‘tailored’ white cells are made, providing protection for life, if the invaders stick around.
Gut bacteria control your mental state
And we also know that changes in the gut affect the brain. In Cell, Dec 19th, 2013, University of Colorado Boulder Professor Rob Knight commented on the first study from a group of American researchers in the newly formed Autism Microbiome Consortium, saying, “This study strengthens the scientific understanding that what goes on in your gut affects what goes on in your brain”.
They induced autism symptoms in mice, which were greatly reduced when the mice were fed the bacterium Bacteriodes fragilis. Researchers found that levels of 4-ethylphenylsulfate were 46 fold heightened in mice with autism-like symptoms but Bacteriodes fragilis reduced these levels to normal.
The clash between gut bacteria and vaccines
Your protective white cells largely form in response to invasive gut bacteria. The obvious question then is, ‘so what is the relationship with vaccines which are also basically designed to prompt an immune reaction?’
The skeptics point to the dangers of introducing foreign DNA and RNA contained in vaccines into your body, especially now we understand what it can do in the microbiome. We already know, for example, that certain Japanese island fishermen have taken DNA into their own DNA over the years from the sea kelp they have consumed.
We are also clear on the potential damage of carriers such as Thimerosal, (mercury), and other sometime ingredients like formaldehyde, aluminium, MSG, methanol, antibiotics and even nagalase. No one can possibly say these have no effect. Even the American Government does not claim vaccines are 100 per cent safe, as we told you in the Previous article ‘The Truth about Vaccines’.
Vaccinations have a greatly reduced effect with strong microbiomes
A big clue to the relationship between vaccines and the strength of the gut microbiome lies with vaccination in the African Continent. There, children can have very strong microbiomes and often vaccination is being shown to fail. The strong microbiome ‘deals’ with the intruder pathogen!
In a 2011 paper(2), researchers from Canada noted that clinical trials showed oral vaccines against polio, rotavirus and cholera had less efficacy and blunted immune response with individuals in developing nations. In these cases, they stated, the individuals have greater gut bacteria diversity than individuals in the developed world and those ‘defences’ don’t just deal with illnesses, they deal with the vaccine components too.
In 2013, studies(3,4) resulting from a collaborative effort between the University of Maryland School of Medicine Institute for Genome Sciences and the Center for Vaccine Development backed this up.
The first study examined the impact of an oral typhoid vaccination on the gut bacteria; the second looked at the impact of vaccines against Shigella, but this time in monkeys. And a third study looked into what happens when the gut bacteria are exposed to wild-type Shigella, which as with S. Typhi, gain access to the body orally (PLOS ONE).
The first conclusion was that the magnitude of the natural immune response depended on the existing diversity of gut bacteria. The more diverse the existing gut bacteria, the greater the resistance to infection by wild type Shigella. No surprises there really.
But the greater the diversity of gut bacteria, the more the characteristics and magnitude of the immune responses to the vaccines were too.
“Our research raises the intriguing possibility that the gut microbiota may play an important role in response to vaccines and susceptibility to enteric pathogens, or bacteria that affect the intestinal tract,” stated Claire M. Fraser, PhD, professor of the Departments of Medicine and Microbiology and Immunology and director of the Institute for Genome Sciences (IGS) at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.
The other study analysed what happened to the human gut microbiota when an oral typhoid vaccination using Salmonella Typhi (S. Typhi) was given. Sure enough, the gut bacteria were affected; and it seems that the more diverse the microbiome members, the stronger the immune responses against the vaccine.
So does MMR cause autism?
There is far, far more in my book, ‘Heal your gut, heal your body’, but it is clear that a weakened microbiome and a loss of commensal bacteria is the major factor in autism.
Sure, vaccines don’t help. To put this in context, a child in America, if the Government CDC recommendations are followed to the letter, will receive 49 doses of vaccines in 14 shots by the age of six. By the age of 18 this reaches 69 doses in 16 shots.
And this is the problem. It is a huge load on an already imperfect microbiome.
Clearly there are factors in MMR vaccines which are toxic to a child’s gut bacteria anyway. And the genetic material in MMR is classified as live/attenuated. So it’s not a truly ‘safe’ vaccine.
But if the gut microbiome of the child was perfect and 100 per cent strong would the MMR vaccination have any negative effect at all? I doubt it very much, as the studies from Africa suggest. I’d be far more worried about the over-use of antibiotics on the very young.
Ref 1: Rosa Krajmalnik-Brown, Jin Gyoon; PLOS ONE, July 3rd, 2013
Ref 2: Rosana B. R. Ferreira, L. Caetano M. Antunes, and B. Brett Finlay, Glenn F. Rall, Editor; PLoS Pathog. 2010 November; 6(11): e1001190. Published online 2010 November
Ref 3: Anna M. Seekatz, Aruna Panda, David A. Rasko, Franklin R. Toapanta, Emiley A. Eloe-Fadrosh, Abdul Q. Khan, Zhenqiu Liu, Steven T. Shipley, 2. Louis J. DeTolla, Marcelo B. Sztein, Claire M. Fraser. Differential Response of the Cynomolgus Macaque Gut Microbiota to Shigella Infection. (PLoS ONE, 2013; 8 (6): e64212 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0064212)
Ref 4: Emiley A. Eloe-Fadrosh, Monica A. McArthur, Anna M. Seekatz, Elliott F. Drabek, David A. Rasko, Marcelo B. Sztein, Claire M. Fraser. Impact of Oral Typhoid Vaccination on the Human Gut Microbiota and Correlations with S. Typhi-Specific Immunological Responses. (PLoS ONE, 2013; 8 (4): e62026 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0062026)
Lies and fraud in MMR and Autism links
Following a whistleblower’s activities in exposing the trashing and thus omission of hard evidence linking autism in African-American children to the MMR vaccine, exposure is now being demanded by Rep. Posey in the US Senate.
His entire statement on the CDC destroying evidence, is printed here:
I rise today on matters of scientific integrity and research. To begin with, I am absolutely, resolutely, pro-vaccine. Advancements in medical immunization have saved countless and greatly benefitted public health. That being said, it’s troubling to me that in a recent Senate hearing on childhood vaccinations, it was never mentioned that our government has paid out over $3 billion through a vaccine injury compensation program for children who have been injured by vaccinations.
Regardless of the subject matter, parents making decisions about their children’s health deserve to have the best information available to them. They should be able to count on federal agencies to tell them the truth. For these reasons, I bring the following matter to the House floor.
In August 2014, Dr. William Thompson, a senior scientist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, worked with a whistleblower attorney to provide my office with documents related to a 2004 CDC study that examined the possibility of a relationship between [the] mumps, measles, rubella vaccine and autism. In a statement released in August, 2014, Dr. Thompson stated, ‘I regret that my co-authors and I omitted statistically significant information in our 2004 article published in the journal Pediatrics.’
Mr. Speaker, I respectfully request the following excepts from the statement written by Dr. Thompson be entered into the record.
[Now quoting Dr. Thompson.]
‘My primary job duties while working in the immunization safety branch from 2000 to 2006, were to later co-lead three major vaccine safety studies. The MADDSP, MMR autism cases control study was being carried out in response to the Wakefield-Lancet study that suggested an association between the MMR vaccine and an autism-like health outcome. There were several major concerns among scientists and consumer advocates outside the CDC in the fall of 2000, regarding the execution of the Verstraeten Study. One of the important goals that was determined up front, in the spring of 2001, before any of these studies started, was to have all three protocols vetted outside the CDC prior to the start of the analyses so consumer advocates could not claim that we were presenting analyses that suited our own goals and biases. We hypothesized that if we found statistically significant effects at either 18 or 36 month thresholds, we would conclude that vaccinating children early with MMR vaccine could lead to autism-like characteristics or features. We all met and finalized the study protocol and analysis plan. The goal was to not deviate from the analysis plan to avoid the debacle that occurred with the Verstraeten thimerosal study published in Pediatrics in 2003.
‘At the Sept 5th meeting we discussed in detail how to code race for both the sample and the birth certificate sample. At the bottom of table 7, it also shows that for the non-birth certificate sample, the adjusted race effect statistical significance was huge.
‘All the authors and I met and decided sometime between August and September 2002, not to report any race effects from the paper. Sometime soon after the meeting, we decided to exclude reporting any race effects. The co-authors scheduled a meeting to destroy documents related to the study. The remaining four co-authors all met and brought a big garbage can into the meeting room, and reviewed and went through all the hardcopy documents that we had thought we should discard, and put them into a huge garbage can. However, because I assumed it was illegal and would violate both FOIA and DOJ requests, I kept hardcopies of all documents in my office, and I retain all associated computer files. I believe we intentionally withheld controversial findings from the final draft of the Pediatrics paper.’
Mr. Speaker, I believe it is our duty to insure that the documents that Dr. Thompson are not ignored. Therefore I will provide them to members of Congress and the House Committees upon request. Considering the nature of the whistleblower’s documents as well as the involvement of the CDC, a hearing and a thorough investigation is warranted.
So I ask, Mr. Speaker, I beg, I implore my colleagues on the appropriations committees to please, please take such action.
Hear this well: Vaccines cause autism
CNN Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen well and truly put her foot in her mouth last week.
Seeking to state the ‘Official view’ that vaccines are safe, and especially the MMR vaccine following the CDC whistleblower story that research evidence had been fraudulently withheld, she leant forward to camera on TV and said, “Autism is not a side effect of vaccines or to say it another way because some people don’t hear this well, vaccines do not cause autism.”
The backlash was immediate and huge. Welcome to the ‘Hear this well’ campaign.
Starting with Polly Tommey: This lady has two children, one perfectly normal but the other became seriously autistic following MMR vaccination at the age of 13 months. Seizures, high pitched screaming, head bashing and severe gut problems were just four of the symptoms; Polly had already formed the Autism Media Channel.
Polly cut ‘Vaccines do not cause autism’ from the CNN piece and then she explained on video the story of her autistic son with the words ‘Some people don’t hear that well’. See the first video on https://www.youtube.com/watch?
Others follow on from this link, because it started a landslide. Mothers, fathers, grandparents all made short videos about their offspring, and MMR vaccines and autism. And the videos all used variations of the theme ‘Hear this well’. In double quick time there were more than 400 posted on You Tube. Some featured stories, at least one involved the death of the child. Others featured the child clearly showing their condition symptoms.
Several even talk of family members catching measles from the vaccinated child. Destruction of lives is a constant theme and even death is mentioned in some.
It wasn’t only Big Pharma and the CDC that Cohen exposed. Much of the mainstream media (who often benefit from large drug company budgets in America) have not covered any of this news story about whistleblowers, autism and vaccines. Nor have the Big Pharma-sympathizing skeptics who originally produced such a robust attack on Dr Andrew Wakefield.
However accidental, Cohen has inflamed the situation and brought it to a wider audience on social media.
See also “#CDCwhistleblower” and “#hearthiswell”.
A Whistleblower stirs up a frenzy on Autism, MMR and the CDC in America
A ‘Whistleblower’, Dr William Thompson, a senior scientist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the USA has publicly stated that the CDC withheld data that confirmed a link between MMR and Autism.
The word ‘fraud’ is commonly used in press comment about the CDC action.
And in the last two days, there has been release of messages supposedly sent to Dr Andrew Wakefield by Thompson apologising for his ‘dishonesty’ and the effect it had on Wakefield’s life.
Let us just follow this through because the blogging press – for Wakefield, cover ups, MMR and Autism has been having a field day.
Dr Andrew Wakefield is a British former surgeon, medical researcher and honorary consultant in experimental gastroenterology at the Royal College of Pathologists, best known for his 1998 research paper claiming that there was a link between the administration of the MMR vaccine and the appearance of autism and bowel disease.
The controversy was enormous. Wakefield has continued to defend his research and conclusions, while Sunday Times reporter Brian Deer, in particular, has aggressively attacked Wakefield and produced evidence in support of his claims. On 28th January a GMC tribunal found charges (including dishonesty) proven against Wakefield and in May 2010 Wakefield was struck off the Medical Register.
Critics claim he has cost ‘countless’ lives (never seemingly quantified) because of his ‘untrue claims’ and thus parents did not vaccinate their children with MMR; while Wakefield himself has always maintained that there was a smear campaign against him, funded by Pharmaceutical Companies and often using skeptics and paid anonymous bloggers. (Ed: Surely not?)
Wakefield now lives in Austin, Texas where he has a number of business and charitable interests mainly to do with Autism.
Ten days ago a news story broke in America. Typically the headlines used phrases such as
“Whistleblower speaks out about MMR and CDC fraud”.
A second round of comments has occurred in the last two days – typically:
“Whistleblower Thompson apologises to Dr Andrew Wakefield”.
What is this all about? Read this comment from Natural News in America.
‘Whistleblower William Thompson has now gone public with a statement posted on the website of the law firm representing him, Morgan Verkamp LLC.
‘My name is William Thompson. I am a Senior Scientist with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, where I have worked since 1998. I regret that my co-authors and I omitted statistically significant information in our 2004 article published in the journal Pediatrics. The omitted data suggested that African American males who received the MMR vaccine before age 36 months were at increased risk for autism. Decisions were made regarding which findings to report after the data were collected, and I believe that the final study protocol was not followed.’
Furthermore Natural News states: The statement (above) opens with a blatant admission of scientific fraud at the CDC:
There are a few immediate comments one needs to add. A Whistleblower to me is someone who rushes off to the mainstream media to tell about dirty deeds. Thompson here held a private chat with someone he did not know was recording him, nor was going to publish along with his name. That doesn’t, of course, affect the content, which has now been verified by CNN.
Thompson also makes the point that the data suggested one group of Americans (African Americans) did seem to have an increased risk of Autism from MMR. Not that all the people in the study had an increased risk.
The fact is that incidence of gastrointestinal problems is high in children with autism. Here is an excerpt from Chris Woollams new book ‘The SECRET SOURCE of Your Good Health’:
‘In a 2013 meta-analysis of available research ‘Gastrointestinal Concerns in Children with Autism: What do we know?’ for the Autism Science Foundation in America, Doctors Barbara McElhanon of Emory School of Medicine and William Sharp of the Marcus Autism Center in Atlanta observed that:
i) There has been a rapid increase in the numbers of cases to 1 in 88 children born according to the CDC, 2012). This has prompted a level of urgency amongst carers.
ii) There has been frequent reporting of gastro- intestinal symptoms (Croen et al., 2012).
iii) There has been a fivefold increase in reported cases of feeding problems (Sharp et al., 2013).
The results of the meta-analysis suggested children with ASD are at increased risk for gastrointestinal issues (1). Specifically, greater levels of gastrointestinal symptoms reported by parents compared with siblings (roughly an 8 fold increase in the risk) with areas of specific concern including abdominal pain, constipation, and diarrhoea.
Certainly there is 2012 research showing that kids with autism were twice as likely as children with other types of disorders to have frequent diarrhoea or colitis (an inflammation of the large intestine).
Researchers from Arizona State University’s Biodesign Institute have shown that autistic children have different gut bacteria to ‘normal’ children with one species of gut bacterium completely missing.
Research (2) into gut bacteria and autism is gathering pace.
Teams of researchers at America’s top Universities are studying the connection between your gut bacteria and your brain and specifically how they affect mood swings, attitudes and diseases from Autism to Alzheimer’s. For example, at UCLA, Professor Emeran Mayer M.D. has been studying the link between the bacteria in your gut and how your brain functions. An analysis of 60 humans showed that different regions of the brain were stimulated as a result of the dominance of different gut bacteria.
In a third study (3) there was a clear finding that the bacteria in a child’s gut affects its brain development. “The data suggests that there is a critical period early in life when gut microorganisms affect the brain and change the behavior in later life,” commented Dr. Rochellys Diaz Heijtz, lead researcher.
Of course, none of this proves that vaccines, and specifically MMR, cause autism. Indeed, one research study showed there was an increase in autism risk with mothers who had ‘unusual’ bacteria in their birth canal. The Arizona State research mentioned above stated that unusual bacteria may first enter the baby during transit of the birth canal. It also suggested that stressed mothers can have stressed babies and that the relevant bacteria are also passed during the passage through the birth canal.
But the fact is that autism levels are increasing, gut bacterial composition has been linked to brain development, and drugs and vaccines can definitely influence such bacteria.
The $173 million human microbiome project in the USA, along with its European twin shed important light on the role of the microbiome in your health – and the inconvenient truth that vaccines and drugs damage it. Research is gathering pace in this area. It won’t be long before we really do know the truth. Let’s hope it is not too long. Because autism is for life – at the moment it can be managed to a degree but not cured.
(1) Buie T, Campbell DB, Fuchs GJ 3rd, Furuta GT, Levy J, Vandewater J, et al. Evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of gastrointestinal disorders in individuals with ASDs: a consensus report. Pediatrics. 2010;125(suppl 1):S1-18
(2)Mulle JG, Sharp WG, Cubells JF. The gut microbiome: a new frontier in autism research. Curr Psychiatry Rep. 2013;15(2):337. doi: 10.1007/s11920-012-0337-0. Epub 2013 Feb 15
(3) Collaboaration between the Karolinska Institute in Sweden and the Genome Institute in Singapore in 2011 – looked at the effect of gut bacteria on brain development in mice (PNAS)