Independent news sources attempt to re-open contentious Autism-Vaccination debate

vaccineThere have been decades of intense debate amongst parents, the Autism community and the medical community about the alleged link between Autism, Autism Spectrum Disorders and proteins used in vaccinating young children from Measles, Mumps, Rubella and Whooping cough.

On July 27, the debate was once more  re-opened by independent online news site Whiteout Press, reporting that two courts in December 2012 had awarded hundreds of thousands of dollars to parents of Ryan Mojabi. The case was not reported upon in daily newspapers,  apart from the Daily Mail in the UK. It follows two similar cases in Italian Courts in 2011. No documents from these cases blamed vaccination with brain damage, or Autism in their documentation.

The Liberty Bell recklessly reports:

“The incidence of autism has rocketed to a risk of around 1 in 25 for children born today. Mean while governments, absent any explanation and fearing loss of public trust, continue to deny the vaccine autism connection despite the concessions in vaccine court.”

Another independent news source The Liberty Beacon sparked a controversy in June, by publishing  that previous research was correct. Whilst there is absolutely no conclusive medical research on a Worldwide scale which proves that  there is a link, Whiteout Press and The Liberty Beacon both cite the work of discredited doctor Andrew Wakefield, who was struck off the British Medical Association’s register for gross misconduct and fraudulently presenting research conclusions to the public during 1996-1997.

The debate alongside the Court rulings have sparked some very interesting debate online. Notably a blog from the Huffington Post blogger David Kirby, admitting that there was absolutely no Scientific evidence whatsoever for the linking of vaccination and these court cases although he tries to justify that the court cases were founded. Interestingly he takes the court cases apart for his reader. Parents of Ryan Mojabi refused to comment or take part with any press.

In direct response, Science Blog’s blogger Orac had this to say:

“It’s a transparent ploy for a variety of reasons. For one thing, the standard of evidence for the Vaccine Court is what has been referred to as “50% and a feather.” Basically, it’s the same standard of evidence as any other civil court: a preponderance of evidence. For another thing, Daubert rules are relaxed, and scientific evidence is not disallowed if it doesn’t meet Daubert standards. Finally, even if the VICP did reimburse parents because the Vaccine Court ruled that vaccines cause autism, it would not be evidence that vaccines do, in fact, cause autism. After all, the courts have gotten it wrong on science time and time again, for example when there was a settlement of a class action lawsuit claiming that silicone breast implants cause all sorts of chronic systemic health problems. They don’t. No, courts don’t decide scientific conclusions; scientists do through evidence, experimentation, and hypothesis-testing that ultimately lead to a scientific consensus”.

This week a very small scale study published by Utah State University in the Medical Daily, seems to hint at an association between the Mumps, Measles and Rubella vaccination and Autism diagnosis.

In comparing 125 children with autism spectrum disorder with 92 others, Vijendra Singh and his colleagues found antibodies demonstrating an unusual reaction to the vaccine, with 90 percent of those children testing positive for antibodies suspected to be linked to the condition. Such antibodies target myelin in the brain, which serves as an insulator allowing nerve fibers to develop properly.

In children without the condition, no such response to the vaccine was observed.

Jonathan Harris, a spokesperson for Justice Awareness and Basic Support (Jabs), said that although government and public health experts have yet to review this latest study, the organisation will need to review the evidence wholly before taking steps to suspend or change the vaccination.

Autism Daily Newscast will keep you informed of any further developments as they happen.

Correction: We originally reported that Jonathan Harris was a spokesperson for UK’s National Autistic Society. He is in fact, a spokesman for Justice Awareness and Basic Support (Jabs).