Pfizer spent $248 million -- a cool quarter billion -- on advertising in the first quarter of 2013. That's a lot of insurance against Big Media getting too aggressive.
Release from Autism Speaks: Robert H. Ring, Ph.D., a respected autism and neurodevelopmental disorders researcher and executive, has been named Chief Science Officer of Autism Speaks, the world's leading autism science and advocacy organization.
Ring, who is currently Autism Speaks' vice president of translational research, has devoted his entire career to improving the lives of people affected by mental health disorders, with specific focus on autism spectrum disorders (ASD) during the last seven years. He replaces Geraldine Dawson, Ph.D.
"Dr. Ring knows how important it is to put science into action, to have the research we support work for the community and make a real difference in people's lives," said Liz Feld, President of Autism Speaks. "His appointment is an exciting moment for Autism Speaks as we continue to push the boundaries of autism research."
"This is a time of unprecedented progress and opportunity in the field of autism research, and Autism Speaks will continue to play a pivotal role as a catalyst for innovation," said Ring. "As Chief Science Officer of Autism Speaks, I have the responsibility of ensuring that our scientific work is always focused on delivering meaningful results for people with ASD and their families. I can't think of a more exciting or urgent challenge."
As Chief Science Officer, Ring will lead Autism Speaks initiatives including the full genome sequencing collaboration with BGI and the Autism Tissue Program and its integration into the recently announced Autism BrainNet. Ring joined Autism Speaks in June of 2011 and has been responsible for the development and implementation of the organization’s expanding translational research portfolio, which is focused on moving biological science “from bench to bedside” – or from laboratory experiments into clinical trials – with the goal of improving outcomes for individuals with ASD. Ring also serves as President of Delivering Scientific Innovation for Autism (DELSIA), a venture philanthropy arm that is working beyond the science to catalyze scientific breakthroughs and innovations in technology into the development of products that will improve the quality of life and health for individuals with autism.
"We thank Dr. Dawson for all she has done for Autism Speaks," said Bob Wright, co-founder of Autism Speaks. "Her vision helped establish our position as a critical driver of autism research here in the U.S. and internationally. Dr. Ring has done tremendous work developing our translational research portfolio. He is the ideal person to build on our success and lead Autism Speaks' autism research efforts as we seek to further elevate the impact it can have for our families."
"I am so grateful to Bob and Suzanne Wright and my colleagues at Autism Speaks, who have literally changed the landscape in autism science and advocacy," said Dawson, who has been appointed as Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and co-director of the Duke University Center on Autism Diagnosis and Treatment. "It has been a privilege to work with this remarkable team for the past five and half years. Rob Ring’s expertise will help ensure that our science investments continue to bring real benefit for individuals with autism and their families.”
Prior to joining Autism Speaks, Ring served as senior director and head of the Autism Research Unit at Pfizer Worldwide Research and Development. There he led the first research group in the history of the pharmaceutical industry focused specifically on the discovery and development of medicines for neurodevelopmental disorders. Ring also served on its executive leadership team for neuroscience and played an instrumental role in shaping the development of Pfizer’s strategy for autism spectrum disorders.
Ring earned a B.A. double major in both Fine Art and Biology from Westmont College in Santa Barbara, CA, and a Ph.D. in Molecular Neurobiology from the City of Hope National Medical Center in Southern California. He holds adjunct faculty appointments in the Departments of Psychiatry at Mount Sinai School of Medicine (New York) and Pharmacology and Physiology at Drexel University College of Medicine (Philadelphia).
Autism is a general term used to describe a group of complex developmental brain disorders – autism spectrum disorders – caused by a combination of genes and environmental influences. These disorders are characterized, in varying degrees, by communication difficulties, social and behavioral challenges, as well as repetitive behaviors. An estimated one in 88 children in the U.S. is on the autism spectrum – a 78 percent increase in six years that is only partly explained by improved diagnosis.
About Autism Speaks
Autism Speaks is the world’s leading autism science and advocacy organization. It is dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a cure for autism; increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders; and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families. Autism Speaks was founded in February 2005 by Suzanne and Bob Wright, the grandparents of a child with autism. Mr. Wright is the former vice chairman of General Electric and chief executive officer of NBC and NBC Universal. Since its inception, Autism Speaks has committed more than $195 million to research and developing innovative resources for families. Each year Walk Now for Autism Speaks events are held in more than 95 cities across North America. On the global front, Autism Speaks has established partnerships and related activities in more than 40 countries on 5 continents to foster international research, services and awareness. To learn more about Autism Speaks, please visitwww.AutismSpeaks.org.
From Slate's Laura Helmuth, one for the ages: "Thimerosal is a mercury compound, which sounds scary, but mercury comes in many forms that behave differently in the body, and this isn't the dangerous kind."
From the online mag: "Slate doesn't give equal time to creationists, and given the overwhelming evidence, we would never publish a story claiming that vaccines cause autism."
Our Contributing Editor Dan Burns on a Congressional office visit: "I called on Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson’s Dallas office today seeking her support for HR 1757, the Vaccine Safety Study Act. Congresswoman Johnson is a nurse by trade and has a reputation in Texas as children's health advocate. She’s a ranking member of the United States House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, and (as I know from previous conversations) she is strongly networked with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.
I had an appointment to discuss HR 1757 with one of her staffers, J. Collin Chlebak, Director of Constituent Services, and had sent him link to Olmsted et al “How Mercury Triggered The Age of Autism.” Before I arrived, Collin had watched the video and researched the bill. His first question -- "Why do you think Secretary Sebelius has taken the position she has taken on vaccines?" -- seemed a bit chilly and signaled to me that I was not on friendly ground. My answer, "She is misinformed and has turned her back on us," did not warm the atmosphere.
Collin said, "The bill is in the House Energy and Commerce Committee, the Subcommittee on Health. It has only two supporters in Congress, Bill Posey and Carolyn B. Maloney. Two out of 435 is not good odds. Your focus at this point should be on the subcommittee. I’ll alert Congresswoman Johnson, but with no one else supporting the bill, getting it to the floor of the House is going to be … tough. It was not a cozy meeting. On the positive side, Collin had done his homework, and he promised to forward the video link to Johnson’s health staffer in DC. Like Posey said, this is going to be a long fight. But we’ve made a start."
Common sense and clarity from Kendra Pettengill, commenting on the Stanford blather about causation (keep reading): "Multiple causes of multiple Autisms is just another agenda to let vaccines off the hook. Like better diagnosis or diagnostic substitution. It just doesn't add up. How about Ocham's Razor, "the simplest solution is probably it." Since the epidemic really started with the birth cohort in the early 90's, we are talking about an epidemic that occurred in a matter of 20 years. A blink of an eye in evolutionary time. And they are asking us to believe that multiple factors all reached the damaging point at exactly the same time, and despite all these multiple causes, they all simultaneously caused a condition in children so similar that they are all diagnosed with the exact same disorder. And while there may be variations along a spectrum they are similar enough to be under the same umbrella. Multiple causations or multiple inputs of toxins, chemicals, or other potential causes would cause unique disorders and they would not have happened all within a period of 20 years. This is beyond comprehension and definitely would not correlate to any science known to man today. 25 years ago Oregon had 6 children known to have Autism and receiving services. Now we have hit 9,000. The odds that multiple causations all converged at the ultimate toxic tipping point in the span of only 25 years, yet causing the same diagnosable and similar disorder in thousands of children in such a short period of time is unprecedented and really about as easy to believe as "vaccine injuries are 1 in a million." When you add in the skyrocketing numbers with other neurodevelopental disorders you see the craziness of this conjecture. I put multiple causes in the same category with unicorns and fairy dust. And when you look at identical percentage rates of increase in every single state in the U.S., well then you are stretchting the fabric of probability even further. We all breath different qualities of air, drink different water, eat different foods, are exposed to different toxins, pesticides, medical interventions, etc., so we know it has to be something that is exactly the same, across the U.S., an identical exposure for nearly every single child in this huge geographical nation. Multiple causations is a pipe dream for the pharmaceuticals and allows them to claim ignorance and potentially that only a few odd cases will eventually be linked to vaccines. Ocham's razor would tell us that if vaccines are causing Autism in some, it is most probably the culprit for the entire epidemic."
One day I'm for Michele Bachmann, the next for Bobby Kennedy Jr. Why don't my politics make any sense? Is it because all I care about is stopping autism? I guess!
Please watch How Mercury Triggered the Age of Autism. Share it with family and friends, and anyone in medicine, government and the media who can help get the job done -- removing mercury from vaccines worldwide. Thanks!
Great comment from John Gilmore of Autism Action Network on NY Times story on DSM-V: "This is to be expected from the Times. If anything the New York Times sees itself as the stentorian voice of the secular credentialed elites. Essentially there is an immense schism going on in psychiatry. And the Times doesn't know how to report on that. Especially in psychiatry, given that much of the New York Times ecosystem adopted Freudian thought as a secular substitute for religion with psychiatrists as a new priesthood. Think Woody Allen.
"Maloney’s bill went nowhere, but Kirby and Olmsted went on to build their careers around the idea that a link exists in some children. Olmsted launched Age of Autism inNovember 2007, branding it the “Daily Web Newspaper of the Autism Epidemic”; it continues to be one of the most popular sites for those who doubt, or are concerned about, the safety of vaccines."
Washington Post profiles Sharyl Attkisson of CBS and her gutsy coverage from Fast and Furious to Benghazi to yes, vaccines. Second to last paragraph: "Some of Attkisson's most controversial reporting hasn't been about politics at all. She has been widely criticized within medical research circles for a series starting in 2002 about research linking childhood vaccinations to the rise in autism. The stories have been denounced in some circles as 'fear-mongering.' Attkisson is, typically, unbowed. 'I stand behind it,' she says. 'It's some of the best work I've ever done. My only regret is we haven't done more.'"
Suicide rate soars, but coverage omits the fact that many drugs, from statins to mefloquine to antidepressants, can trigger suicide -- those ads warn they may trigger "suicidal thoughts and actions" ... because they can and they do.
NYT Mag: "Our Feel-Good War on Breast Cancer -- Has raising awareness become more important than saving lives?" OK class, compare and contrast with Autism Awareness Month.
In The Mail in 2006, then-candidate David Cameron said Brits ought to have the option of single-jab measles vaccines. All about choice, don't you know. A good conservative position -- unless Andy adopts it!
The much-maligned chelation study has shown signs of an unexpected benefit for heart patients. Now, wHgy the Hgeck would cHgelation Hgelp someone with Hgeart problems?
This comment by SteveCA7, on a SkyNews article bashing Andy Wakefield, shows why vaccine injury unites victims of MMR, Gardasil, and much more: "Lies, damned lies and more lies. The Department of Health tells everyone that this and other vaccines are safe. They may be safe for the majority but they are certainly not safe for everyone. You only need to look at their own medicine guides on the NHS Choices website (just Google 'Medicines a - z' and look up MMR vaccine). Like all vaccines it tells you that this vaccine is not suitable for everyone and that some people must never have it. It tells you that many side effects can be serious. Virtually all serious side effects are auto-immune reactions.
"Our daughter had the first dose of MMR and immediately developed full blown measles, was then admitted to an isolation ward with suspect meningitis and then a cervical lymph node developed the size of a golf ball which was eventually removed by surgery. We chose not to have the second dose.
"Two years ago we declined the opportunity for her to have the HPV vaccine but were reassured by the School Nurse that it was nothing like the MMR and quite safe (as she was told by the DoH). Within the hour she was so unwell that my wife was called to collect her from school. She was constantly cold, flu-like and couldn't stay awake. After a few weeks she was sleeping 20 - 23 hours a day. After 2 months of this she then went into a coma-like sleep for 13 weeks. She has missed almost 2 years of school. Unbelievably, not only do the DoH and NHS insist that it is sheer coincidence but they then reported us to Social Services and the local Safeguarding Board blaming us for fabricated and induced illness (FII).
"If only they would be open and honest and follow their own safety rules and then at least admit it for the unfortunate few and try to help them. It is an utter disgrace.
"The DoH may have discredited Dr Andrew Wakefield here in the UK (I won't say this is by dirty tricks or my comment will be removed again) but the courts in the USA and Italy have agreed that the MMR vaccine has caused autism."