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SafeMinds: New Scientific Evidence Links Autism to Vaccines and Mercury

Finger-pointing-time New Scientific Evidence Links Autism to Vaccines and Mercury. Ending the Autism Epidemic Starts with Removal of Harmful Exposures, Says SafeMinds.

Two new papers published this week in the peer-reviewed neuroscience journal Acta Neurobiologiae Experimentalis point to vaccines and heavy metal toxins including mercury as causes of the alarming rise in autism. The Centers for Disease Control now estimate autism to affect one in 110 children, up 40% from just a few years ago.

“The rapid increase in autism cannot be explained solely by changes in diagnostic practices and awareness,” said Sallie Bernard, president of SafeMinds. “We must look at what babies and pregnant women are being exposed to that has created this epidemic and take immediate steps to protect our children from these hazardous substances.”  

In the first study, researchers from the University of Pittsburgh and Thoughtful House in Austin, Texas compared two sets of macaque infant monkeys.  One set of monkeys was unvaccinated while the second set received vaccines identical to the 1990s pediatric vaccine schedule, most of which contained mercury. Infant macaques were used due to their similarity to human infants. Macaques share 93.5% of the DNA found in the human genome.

The contrasting results were remarkable. The vaccinated monkeys showed increased brain growth, which the authors theorize may arise from the inability to prune neurons. Larger head size is a hallmark of human infants who later develop autism. The vaccinated primates also showed a different rate of maturation of the amygdala section of the brain than the non-vaccinated monkeys. Amygdala dysfunction has been long implicated in autism. The amygdala region is responsible for emotions, memory and learning. Individuals with autism often struggle in these areas. 

In the second paper, two scientists from the University of Northern Iowa made a critical appraisal of research that has been used to disprove a link between autism and heavy metals, and mercury in particular. They found statistical errors in several studies so that a re-analysis of the data demonstrated a greater presence of metals in autistic children than controls. The authors calculated that 43 out of 58 scientific reports suggest some link between heavy metals and autism may be present, while 13 reports suggest no link.  They concluded that while questions remain, “the weight of evidence favor[s] a connection.”

SafeMinds is calling for the United States government to pass legislation banning mercury in vaccines as has been done already by many states, based upon these two new significant articles and the growing scientific literature casting doubt on the safety of the infant vaccine schedule and of exposures to heavy metals including mercury. Most influenza vaccines contain mercury. SafeMinds also asks Congress to pass the Safe Chemicals Act of 2010 so that harmful chemical substances like mercury in medical products will be discontinued when proof of safety is absent. 

“While we wait for the government to act, the public can take steps to limit their exposures to toxicants which can alter fetal and infant development leading to developmental disabilities like autism,” said Ms. Bernard. “The public can refuse vaccines made with mercury, can make choices for their child's vaccine schedule, and can create homes that are largely mercury-free.”

The Coalition for SafeMinds (Sensible Action for Ending Mercury‐Induced Neurological Disorders) is a nonprofit organization founded to investigate and raise awareness of the risks to infants and children of exposure to mercury from medical products, including thimerosal in vaccines. Further information about SafeMinds and the harmful effects from mercury exposure may be found at www.safeminds.org.



Work Equality

Its one thing to publish research results, its another thing to ACT on it. We need more action taken to address these issues and increase awareness when research results like these are published.


@ barbaraj - It’s not just the mercury. Aluminum adjuvants are neurotoxins. I believe that it would be a serious mistake for us to ignore this reality. Eliminating mercury from the vaccine schedules will not make them safe...it will only make them somewhat less toxic. Even with less mercury in the vaccine schedules, many of us are probably still receiving a daily dose of mercury from our mercury amalgam dental fillings. Even if all mercury was removed completely from the vaccine schedules, as it should be, I would still be VERY concerned that the autism rate will not drop to zero. Why? Because while mercury neurotoxicity may be a sufficient reason to regress into autism, it may not be a necessary reason to become autistic. The neurotoxicity of aluminum adjuvants might also prove to be a sufficient reason to become autistic.

Aluminum adjuvants administered parenterally, might be expected to be more toxic than aluminum absorbed from the gut and through the skin, e.g. from antacids and deodorants. This precise point could possibly be proven using Aluminum-26 to distinguish between aluminum from the vaccine schedules and dietary sources of aluminum.

A neuroscientist from the University of British Columbia, Christopher A. Shaw, PhD, and his associates, have done some of the most recent work in this area. See the links provided below. See also the citations below to 3 of Dr Shaws publications on this subject.

See also an article titled “Is Aluminum the New Thimerosal?” by Robert W. Sears in 2008.








Christopher A. Shaw and Michael S. Petrik titled, “Aluminum hydroxide injections lead to motor deficits and motor neuron degeneration” in Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry, Volume 103, Issue 11, November 2009, Pages 1555-1562. Doi: 10.1016/j.jinorgbio.2009.05.019

Christopher A. Shaw and Gunter U. Hoglinger titled, “Neurodegenerative Diseases: Neurotoxins as Sufficient Etiologic Agents?” in NeuroMolecular Medicine, Volume 10, Number 1 / March, 2008. Doi: 10.1007/s12017-007-8016-8

Maryline Couette, et al titled, “Long-term persistence of vaccine-derived aluminum hydroxide is associated with chronic cognitive dysfunction”in Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry, Volume 103, Issue 11, November 2009, Pages 1571-1578. Doi: 10.1016/j.jinorgbio.209.08.005


Patron 99, I'm dizzied today after attempting to find out information on aluminum . Today, I read that vaccine without aluminum adjuvants would require more antigens, and possibly not work at all without it. I've read that there are no studies to the dangers, other than a few autopsies showing aluminum tangles in the brains of alzheimers patients, a few studies on industrial exposures, and one fairly interesting one showing dememtia was caused by aluminum in tap water given iv in dialysis. Clearly, the meeting at puerto rico to discuss this brought about some diverse types, but each treated the subject within their specialty, and while they went on and on with consideration to dtap "puffy leg" reactions, and a hmm or two concerning the quick release of most aluminum in tissues/urine yet an amount that held within the body for over 1000 days, with a mention of going to bone and brain. I admittedly gave up on page 220 or so when my computer froze, maybe there was some "sum it up" section I missed. The transcript started with a study where these grown men called the animals bunnies, not cute, in my book that "lightness" in this issue leaned toward callousness, however, one "bunny" didn't excrete and they didn't know why, so they referred to it as bad bunny, one doc suggested at this point, could there be "bad children". That seems to remain the question. What I took from this is clearly there have been no studies to support the safety of any vaccines, not one. They are operating a few decades behind the rest of science, and they need to catch up. At this point I see no reason to subject our children to vaccines that "may not work" at all in preventing many of the diseases they have been designed for. I felt that if aluminum is the factor in building titers against disease, perhaps they should find a dose, inject it, and continue on with low antigen vaccines that find their way to the aluminum depot areas,not continually inject children with aluminum in every shot, however, no one knows how safe or unsafe any of this is or could be, they really don't know.

Birgit Calhoun

Way to go AoA!!! Way to go SafeMinds!!! Way to go you daring researchers!!!

My oldest son, born in 1966, was the reason why I got on the mercury trail as soon as the internet became available. Not only did he get 30 amalgams before he was three years old, he was also exposed most likely through me because I had substantial dental work done before he was conceived. In the '60s he also received multiple vaccines on the same day. He was never diagnosed with autism. But the fact that he didn't talk until he was three and one half years old should be a pretty good indicator that he is in the ASD category.

Theodora Trudorn

You got it spacekitty!! That is exactly right. When I go to captial hill to deal with legislatures on an issues I alwats remember two things. Only two things get a rise out of them and get them motivated, votes, and thier pocket books.

I have managed to hit both by saying this (and in my state, with my clout, it gets their attention). You can either support us and help with children with autism or not. But know, by this decision, I can make or break your political career.

I feel dirty for having to use tatics like that, but they won't listen to anything else!! Threaten to have a bunch of effected but still competant kids and a large group of parents going to the press and singling out a legislature and saying they don't want to help kids with autism and you just finally motivated a politican!

But you got to make the threat real to them. Pharma has a strong hold, so you have to show you mean buisness. Pharma can fund them, but we as voters can take them out of office and out of anyone's pockets. This is something we can't forget!


I agree with Kylesmom...... Where is the phone campaign, where is the rallying cry... where is the primal scream of those poor monkeys who suffered for children. Let their lives be not ignored


Both studies are important and valuable. KUDOS to the authors of each study.

In the first study, the authors are looking at the effect on opoid receptor binding of the vaccine schedule up to 12 months in non-human primates as a marker of brain growth, maturation, and function.

A couple questions as to this study: how do we know that the diminished opoid binding in the vaccinated group was not due, at least in part, to diminished perfusion or diminished viability?

It may not be appropriate to ignore the contribution of aluminum in the aluminum-containing vaccines in the vaccinated group. For example, according to Figure 2 in an article by Neil Z. Miller, titled "Aluminum in Vaccines: a Neurological Gamble", fully vaccinated human infants have received 4,050 micrograms of aluminum by 12 months of age (if my addition is correct).


Of course, Professor Boyd Haley's work on synergistic toxicity between aluminum and mercury is VERY persuasive.


Thus, a strong argument can be made that aluminum should also be banned from all vaccines...not just mercury, or else we end up having to revisit the issue at a later date. Eliminating the mercury will not make the vaccine schedules safe...it will only make them less toxic. The remaining toxicity will still be substantial.

Let's not step in the trap of supporting "safe" vaccines. There may not be such a thing as a safe vaccine, much less a vaccine that is effective.

CarolynC Kylesmom

I have noticed in several autism group coverages of this story that it seems that the community is taking a muted approach to this INCREDIBLE story that should finally put the controsersy to rest. This needs to be a screaming headline. No one except us are going to plow through "ANOTHER STUDY" to read this except our community. Here's the headline we need to put on all our emails to friends to make this go VIRAL now! ! !
"FINALLY, PROOF: VAccines seriously harm primate infants in first vaccinnated vs. unvaccinated study (University of Pittsburgh)"
Or, if you can envision another one, suggest it!
We have to go big with this! So big that people hear it even if they only read the headline! Even though it will be later attacked. Infants who have still escaped autism are better off if this is heard and attacked than if it is ignored, as painful as it is for us to hear the relentless attacks. Because parents on the edge just might look more closely at the studies, and save a few more children. I know, I'm preaching to the choir here. Or is there a strategic reason to downplay this right now?


Parents, be sure to have your child tested for mercury from a proper lab with a proper test. Unprovoked blood test will only show recent exposures. Provoked urinalysis may get you insurance coverage. It did for us. We must all prove our children are sick, demand medical coverage, and hold them for negligence when they ignore the child's need. It is the only wy this is going to stop. The medical community will only stop when their pocket books are affected.

Jenny Allan

Frightening!! Mercury has long been known as an accumulative poison, particularly toxic to brain tissues, and yet Thiomersal has been used as a vaccine preservative for more than 70 years. As a 'senior citizen' I have been ruminating over some of the other 'safe but unsafe' practices which were allowed to continue for many years in spite of warnings and contra indications.

The most obvious one is the mercury amalgam used for tooth fillings. In the UK in the 1950s, children's molar teeth were filled as soon as they emerged from the gums. I have had a 'mouthful of mercury' for more than 60 years and my brain is still sharp....er what was that again???

Also in the 1950's, us kids were taken to Clark's shoe shop twice a year for our winter school shoes and summer sandals. Inside the shop was a wonderful x-ray machine. The idea was that, once fitted, the new shoes were checked to make sure that there was room for the child's foot bones to grow a little. We loved to see the bones and the tacks around the shoes and would fight to have another 'shot' with the machine!! A lot of shoe shop assistants came down with cancers due to the radiation. Number of kids affected-unknown!! Radiation was once considered to be beneficial, heaven help us!! ..and persons would queue up to be irradiated!!

The Thalidomide scandal, in the 1960's has always been presented to the public as a totally unforseen side effect of this medication, given to pregnant mothers to alleviate morning sickness; but don't you believe it!! Several research scientists noticed that baby mice, born to mothers fed the medication, had limbs that were truncated. These scientists were NOT listened to for years and their work was suppressed and denigrated, shades of Wakefield???

It is human nature to cling onto the staus quo and what is familiar, (and profitable!!), but we MUST learn the lessons of history. It is time to acknowledge that vaccine damage can happen and take immediate avoiding action. There is NO reason why vaccines should not be safe. It is all about eliminating those factors which make them UNSAFE.

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