Some recent posts on the AgeofAutism.com website concerning autism and autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and perhaps chemical causation intrigued me enough to do some additional reading.
Specifically, the link AofA polio/DDT published in 2011 caused me to embark on a rather circuitous path that eventually led to investigation of human health developments since the 1970/1980’s time frame. There is a curious apparent synergy that also coincides with a former Mons@nto researcher quickly being placed in an editorial position at Elsevier after the Seralini paper (2012) attracted considerable attention, negative press and eventual retraction. It has curious and unnerving similarities to the processes which led to the Wakefield 1998 Lancet paper retraction and continued lawsuits,
My Reading Sequence:
3. Blaxill/Olmsted (AofA polio/DDT connection, 2011
4. BlaxillOlmsted (CA polio cases, 2014 -1)
5. Blaxill/Olmsted (CA polio cases 2014 -2)
6. Blaxill/Olmsted (CA polio cases 2014-3, link unreachable- to be updated)
7. Temekes (2012-2013 neonicotinoid pesticide PPT/information)
8. Seralini (2012, retracted paper linking glyphosate w/ mammalian health effects)
8A. Seralini 2012-13 (2014 comments to reviewers, answers to questions)
Each one of these links represents an interesting body of collective knowledge which has deep implications about human health degradation, economics, and global ecosystem dysfunctioning, including climate change.
Suggestion: Seneff powerpt (10), Samsel & Seneff (9), Mason (11), and then go from there.
Dietary revisions as needed: go organic, gluten free, perhaps medication revisions, sunlight, exercise regimen, limited vaccination(s).
An interesting article by Dunning, a columnist for the magazine Scientific American, reads more like an infomercial for Trader Joe’s than exposing any new salient facts about farming types, economics and health implications regarding organic produce. I would suggest that organic practices remains an evolving subject with many facets for further development.
Dunning cites National Review as a source. National Review also published articles debunking climate change and supporting hydraulic fracturing to maintain US energy security. I’d be more receptive to an article like this if it examined economics/disadvantages/etc of locally-grown produce over heavily subsidized industrialized practices such as these by Lobley (2009), Bolwig(2009), and/or McFadden (2013).
The fact that a substantial part of the US population suffers from overconsumptive diseases such as obesity, diabetes, or cancer, and the US food distribution scheme was developed to produce cheap/plentiful, mass marketed and heavily subsidized calories begs the question whether / which types of food production are sustainable or contributes to long term food/energy security. Further, 2/3 of the US food production is either wasted or used for animal production complicates the issues as well.
Despite the fact that organic farming had been practiced for the last 6 millenia, a multitude of factors contribute to the growth of organic farming & sales (vs conventional factory farming) in the US; namely mass marketing, rising incomes, relative prices/sales to commercially grown products, environmental consciousness & xogenous (ie, food scares, GMO) shocks. Likewise, several longterm studies (Pimentel et al, 2005; others) examined how economics, soil health, environmental consequences and sustainability of organically-raised crops compared with conventionally-raised crops. National Geographic ran an article about a decade or so ago looking at organic vs conventional farming in Wisconsin and indicated that organic farming there was more cost effective and environmentally sustainable practice in the long run.
To be fair, Science produced an article indicating that organic wheat had little additional nutrional value over conventionally-raised wheat. Maybe with the rise in gluten-intolerance in the US, this finding isn’t a big deal. However, Chassy’s study compared organic and conventional produce nutrient components, finding significantly higher nutrient levels in organic produce compared to conventionally-grown identical varieties.
Many supporters of conventionally raised/organic food skeptics appear to stress that conventional produce is exactly the same as organic produce. This is interesting since Monsanto has been on a three+ decade long legal crusade to firewall their GMO-crops/patented stocks from competition while stressing their uniqueness versus non GMO crops, including organic ones. The fact that Monsanto (among others) are currently developing 2nd generation GMOs to produce enhanced nutrients perhaps indicates a realization that 1st generation GMOs lacked many key nutritional metrics currently found in products grown under more natural, organic conditions. Some feel that Monsanto’s endgame is to gain control over the planet’s food production & supply. Organic farming practices and local economic/ecological benefits would appear to be striking an interesting, proactive contrast to those of large scale, market driven food production.
Sources: Seeds of Destruction by Engdahl;
The World According to Monsanto by Robin;
Stolen Harvest by Shiva;
Uncertain Peril by Cummings.
Consumers are increasingly turning to organic foods as a response to GMO (genetically modified) foods. Although Dunning’s claims that 2 E coli outbreak incidents in 2006 were linked to organic produce is true, the vast majority of food borne illnesses over the last 30 years were linked/associated with conventionally raised meat/produce and/or restaurants which served meat or produce raised conventionally. Since conventional and organic produce can be grown with manure, it would appear that careful handling / washing of produce before consumption would be advised.
With regard to Dunning’s claim of organic farmers and their pesticide use, fewer than 10% use botanical insecticides and often complement with other pest control strategies. Finally, the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) stated that “organic agriculture can be more conducive to food security in Africa than most conventional production systems. They suggested that this agricultural process would more likely be sustainable in the long-term” by producing “yields that more than doubled where organic, or near-organic practices had been used”, and that soil fertility and drought resistance improved.
The Atlantic article cites a CDC report by Stefano (CDC DeStefano 2013 link, http://jpeds.com/webfiles/images/journals/ympd/JPEDSDeStefano.pdf )
A number of comments and critiques about the DeStefano study have been written:
cdc report http://vran.org/in-the-news/cdc-autism-studies-flawed/
Basis for DeStefano CDC article: Price et al 2010 link http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/126/4/656.long
Price 2009 grey literature articles (link vol I) and (link vol II) [methodology outlined]
This article outlines how the CDC studies (Price in 2009 & 2010, and DeStefano, 2013) were fundamentally flawed, unusually biased towards finding no relationship between vaccination and autism and basically was uninformative towards providing any insight towards answering the basic question of “vaccine-caused autism”. The reason that all three studies (Price and Stefano) are mentioned by DeSoto relates to the fact they used the same data sets and flawed collection/screening methodologies.
Hooker Criticism of DeStefano et al study Critique of Destefano et al. 2013 J Peds. Study By Brian S. Hooker, Ph.D., P.E. in: http://healthimpactnews.com/2013/can-we-trust-the-cdc-claim-that-there-is-no-lin k-between-vaccines-and-autism/ The recent CDC study “Increasing Exposure to Antibody-Stimulating Proteins and Polysaccharides in Vaccines Is Not Associated with Risk of Autism” by Destefano et al. 2013 was released in the Journal of Pediatrics last week. This study purports that “increasing exposure to antibody-stimulating proteins and polysaccharides in vaccines during the first 2 years of life was not related to the risk of developing an ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder).” Of all of the papers I have reviewed over my 26-year career as a research scientist, this is perhaps the most flawed and disingenuous study I have encountered. The Destefano et al. 2013 study is to science what the movie Ishtar was to cinema.
No New Data The basis for the study is essentially a rehash of the data that was used to generate the fraudulent Price et al. 2010 Pediatrics study. This research, (Price et al. 2010 “Prenatal and Infant Exposure to Thimerosal From Vaccines and Immunoglobulins and Risk of Autism” Pediatrics 126:656) was supposed to be the CDC’s “final word” stating that thimerosal, the mercury-containing preservative in some vaccines, was in no way causally linked to autism.
No True Controls in the Study
Within the Destefano study released last week, with the help of multimillionaire vaccine industrialist Dr. Paul Offit, CDC researchers merely added up the number of vaccine antigens that the case (autism) and control (neurotypical) children were exposed to through the infant vaccination schedule. The theory that they were trying to refute essentially was “children exposed to a greater total number of antigens had a greater risk of autism.”
Given this train wreck of a study, it is very difficult to know where to start my critique. However, the following statement stood out from the rest as the study authors described the control group: “ Of the remaining 752 controls included in the analysis, 186 had an SCQ (Social Communication Questionaire) score <16 but had indications of speech delay or language delay, learning disability, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or attention deficit disorder, or tics, or had an individual education plan. This clearly shows that the 186 aforementioned controls (25% of the control group) were not controls at all but instead had some underlying developmental deficit (all of which are features of autism or autism spectrum disorder). Unlike the study design described (i.e., where autism cases were matched to neurotypical controls), autism cases were matched with “cases” of other, similar neurodevelopmental maladies. Thus, you would expect to see no difference between the two groups.
Antigen Correlation is Meaningless
Next, the basis of the study was to confirm or deny a correlation between the “number of antigens received” and the incidence of autism. The possible number of antigens per given vaccine was reported in Table 1 of the study. However, the term “number of antigens” is a complete white-wash of what is actually in these vaccines, their concentrations and their relative strengths in terms of inflammatory response, and is not an accurate predictor of how the body will respond to specific antigens. For example, “antigens” for the five antigen DTaP vaccines (e.g., Infanrix) include diphtheria toxoid, tetanus toxoid, pertussis toxoid, filamentous hemagglutinin and pertactin. The number “5” assigned in this category is merely the number of different antigens and doesn’t account for each antigen’s amount or relative strength. Neither does this account for the fact that Infanrix also contains aluminum (an adjuvant – designed to elicit a non-specific immune response), formaldehyde and polysorbate 80, all which could also elicit some form of inflammatory reaction. Thus, the main “independent” variable of “number of antigens” within the Destefano et al. 2013 study is essentially completely meaningless.
High Participant Refusal Rate Creates Selection Bias The high participant refusal rate in this study is also problematic. Out of 668 cases and 2444 controls originally selected for the study, only 321 cases (48.1%) and 774 controls (31.7%) chose to participate in the research. In other words, 65% of the individuals contacted as potential participants flat-out refused to participate in the study. Who could blame them?! The CDC has been producing junk science regarding vaccines and autism since 2002 and the public knows. This indeed could produce selection bias in that the 35% of individuals that did participate were less likely to believe that vaccines were responsible for neurodevelopmental sequelae including autism.
Overmatching Statistical Error Also, the analysis is plagued with a statistical error called “overmatching.” For a comprehensive analysis of the previous CDC study completed on the same data set (Price et al. 2010 Pediatrics), regarding thimerosal exposure rather than the number of vaccine antigens, please see Chapter 6, “Vaccine Safety Study as an Interesting Case of ‘Over-Matching’” by M. Catherine DeSoto and Robert Hitlan
in the book “Recent Advances in Autism Spectrum Disorders – Volume I”, edited by Michael Fitzgerald, ISBN 978-953-51-1021-7.
The point made by Dr. DeSoto and Dr. Hitlan is that the cases and the controls in this study are too closely matched to each other. Cases were matched with controls of the same age, sex, within the same HMO and essentially the same vaccination schedule using the same vaccine manufacturers. This may be seen in Figures 1 and 2 of the Destefano et al. 2013 paper which indicated that there are almost no differences between the exposure to antigens between the case (autism) and control groups in every exposure group tested. This holds for cumulative antigen levels (Figure 1) as well as single day antigen exposure levels (Figure 2).
This type of error of course precludes “finding a difference” between cases and controls because all differences were matched out case-by-case. This would be akin to analyzing radiation workers that got the same dosage of gamma radiation within cases and control groups to determine the relationship between gamma radiation and cancer incidence. Of course, since cases and controls got the same dosage, no effect would be seen. However, this is an unfair study. To see the true effect, cases would need to be matched with controls with variable levels of gamma radiation exposure and perhaps a “no exposure” group would be included as a baseline comparison to cancer rates within higher exposure groups. In the same way, the CDC study by Price et al (2009 & 2010), and DeStefano (2013)[because they used the same data/methods]has used these overmatched data to obfuscate any true effect between vaccine antigen exposure and autism incidence.
OREGON undervaccination study– Glanz et al 2013
Glanz et al in the Journal of the American Medical Association (Pediatrics discipline) which states that “children who were undervaccinated because of parental choice had lower rates of outpatient visits and emergency department encounters than age-appropriately vaccinated children.”
One of the ongoing criticisms about vaccination has been the drumbeat mantra that the ‘science’ is lacking. With the above paragraphs and peer-reviewed articles, it should be clear or self-evident that a significant amount of evidence exists for questioning the efficacy and reliability for large scale public vaccinations as a public health strategy. Further, there exists more than a century of data (http://childhealthsafety.wordpress.com/graphs/) which have been collated from existing articles, disease statistics websites, and talks (Rosling). Further, Blaylock wrote an article showing potential dangers from excess vaccinations and the likely immune/neurological responses? Blaylock 2008 article with 105 references.
Finally, there remains a good deal of skepticism within the developing world about Western Medicine, vaccinations, and disease. The refusal by states within Northern Nigeria, Pakistan and India to allow polio eradication programs and large scale vaccination efforts requires some understanding. Primarily, the refusal had more to do with an abject misconceptions about health care implementation, sociopolitical dynamics, and outright deceit by Western Powers to enforce the programs. The latter reasons- a ruse concocted by the CIA to obtain Osama Bin Laden’s DNA to firmly establish his location before a targeted assassination operation has been documented to have done more harm to large scale, long term public health programs than good.
Reobtaining or obtaining medical rights for children Zita Lazzarini & Lori Rosales wrote an insightful, well researched article for the Yale Journal of Law, etc.
> While they do spend a fair amount of time delving into reasons why ART advice should be heeded, they also deal quite extensively about recent successful cases where pregnant HIV+ women/new mothers have been able to refuse ART/drugs for themselves & newborns. The take home msg appears, as a women’s reproductive & health issue, State-forced ART treatment (maybe vaccinations) violates basic women’s/mother choice & ability to make medical decisions for themselves & infants.
I don’t know much about HIV law & treatment consent, but the article contains several state-specific cases; so it seems more likely that showing similarities to certain cases as a way to obtain medical custody. If a legal team can pivot the ART or likely _any medical_ issue from public health/public risk to one focused on the “violating basic human/woman’s/mother rights” and ‘informed consent’, the establishment would cave in fairly quickly & you’d be free (or more free) to make your own informed medical choices.
Thus, judges (publicly elected, right?) lean towards case dismissal & more unilateral, independent medical choices for plaintiffs likely.
Study showing increased risk of HIV transmission from HIV+ mother to infant with interrupted breastfeeding relative to continual breastfeeding. Wonder why this study was done in Zambia and why was there ‘abrupt weaning‘. Non exclusive breastfeeding implies some additional populational issues in play.
Some conclusions: A) if an HIV+ mother chooses to breastfeed her newborn, forced removal or weaning increases HIV transmission to infant risk if the mother resumes breastfeeding, B)state-forced removal would seem to be a risky option and not advisable C) still seem to consider breast milk as ‘dangerous’.
It makes me wonder what is being measured in the final analyses; yet another problem with the models associated with predicting HIV spread.
Concentrations of HIV-1 RNA and DNA in mucosal compartments influence the risk of sexual transmission and mother-to-child transmission of HIV-1. Breast milk production is physiologically regulated such that supply is a function of infant demand, but whether demand also influences HIV-1 dynamics in breast milk is unknown. We tested whether minor and major changes in feeding frequency influence breast milk viral concentrations in 958 HIV-1–infected women and their infants followed, for 24 months during a trial in Lusaka, Zambia. Women were randomized to wean abruptly at 4 months or to continue breast-feeding for a duration of their own choosing. Two weeks after breast-feeding cessation (4.5 months), HIV-1 concentrations in breast milk were substantially higher (median RNA, 2708 copies/ml; DNA, 14 copies/ml) than if breast-feeding continued (median RNA, <50 copies/ml; DNA, <1 copy/ml; P < 0.0001).
Among those continuing breast-feeding, HIV-1 concentrations in milk were higher if breast-feeding was nonexclusive (median RNA, 293 copies/ml; DNA, 2 copies/ml; P = 0.0006). Elevated milk viral concentrations after stopping breast-feeding explained higher than expected rates of late postnatal HIV transmission in those who weaned early. Changes in the frequency of breast-feeding peri-weaning and with nonexclusive breast-feeding influenced milk viral concentrations.
This may explain the reduced risk of HIV-1 transmission associated with exclusive breast-feeding and why early weaning does not achieve the magnitude of HIV prevention predicted by models. Our results support continuation of maternal antiretroviral drug interventions over the full duration of time when any breast milk exposures may occur after planned weaning.
Copyright © 2013, American Association for the Advancement of Science
Beldeu Singh has written an insightful article on how AZT acts as an AIDS chemotherapeutic agent within the body/cells, questions about perceived necessity for HIV suppression, and how IRIS occurs.
In general & in my opinion, the PERTH Group & the Alberta Reappraising AIDS Society (ARAS) have provided some solid rigorous science as well as some pointed questions about how HIV & AIDS should be viewed.