Dr. Peter Hotez asked me for an apology and a retraction about his vaccine profits

BY J.B. HANDLEY February 10, 2017

Dr. Peter Hotez

PORTLAND, Oregon — Earlier this week, in an Op-Ed piece for the New York Times, Dr. Peter Hotez used hyperbole, misrepresentation, and outright falsehoods to imply that our country was on the brink of returning to the dark ages if the “Anti-Vaxxers” like President Trump and Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. are allowed to “win” by having the audacity to review the safety of vaccines in our country. Given that the U.S. government had paid out more than $3 billion to vaccine injury victims, who in their right mind wouldn’t like to see the number of vaccine injuries decline through safer vaccines?

The CDC Playbook

Many years ago, I happened upon an internal CDC presentation, that explained the CDC’s point of view about generating demand for vaccines which goes something like this:

If people aren’t scared to death, they won’t get their vaccines. We need to manufacture “concern, anxiety, and worry” to win this battle.

Don’t believe me? Think I’m exaggerating? Well, luckily I have that slide from CDC, you can read it for yourself. Glen Nowak, Director of Communications for CDC said the following to a group of public health officials:

“The belief that you can inform and warn people, and get them to take appropriate actions or precautions with respect to a health threat or risk without actually making them anxious or concerned. This is not possible…This is like breaking up with your boyfriend without hurting his feelings. It can’t be done.”

And then he explained the importance of fomenting anxiety:

“Concern, anxiety, worry”

An excellent article in the British Medical Journal took the CDC to task for greatly exaggerating the number of flu deaths every year in order to — you guessed it — convince more people to get their flu shot:

“US data on influenza deaths are a mess. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) acknowledges a difference between flu death and flu associated death yet uses the terms interchangeably. Additionally, there are significant statistical incompatibilities between official estimates and national vital statistics data. Compounding these problems is a marketing of fear — a CDC communications strategy in which medical experts ‘predict dire outcomes’ during flu seasons.”

“Predict dire outcomes” — sound familiar?

Dr. Hotez in the NY Times

I wanted you to understand the CDC strategy for fomenting fear because it makes Dr. Hotez’s Op-Ed in the NY Times make more sense: he is the latest boy to cry wolf, and since there is no Disneyland measles “epidemic” (it was a tiny number of cases), Dr. Hotez is stuck warning people about the measles epidemic that MIGHT happen. Really, the epidemic in the future that isn’t here yet.

Dr. Hotez accused me of lying in a piece I wrote about him last week, which I will address in a moment, but just for fun, I’m going to paste every sentence from Dr. Hotez’s Op-Ed that I believe to be factually incorrect.

Why lie?

NY Times Op-Ed Lies From Dr. Peter Hotez:

  1. “It’s looking as if 2017 could become the year when the anti-vaccination movement gains ascendancy in the United States and we begin to see a reversal of several decades in steady public health gains. The first blow will be measles outbreaks in America.”

My response: This is irresponsible fomenting of anxiety. We have no epidemic. It’s also well known that the MMR vaccine has a failure rate allowing vaccinated people to catch measles, and that the vaccine’s efficacy wanes over time and that less than 50% of American adults are up to date on vaccinations. So, we will always have pockets of measles outbreaks. (I think Dr. Hotez might even be rooting for one of those outbreaks to hit soon!)

2. “Measles is one of the most contagious and most lethal of all human diseases.”

My response: Measles was an ordinary childhood illness until a vaccine was created. The CDC reports the death rate from measles in the 1980s was 0.2% (far from the “most lethal”) and that was largely amongst the medically fragile, and there hasn’t been a death in the U.S. from measles in over a decade. If a child catches measles, the medical guidance is to treat it like a cold, not rush to the hospital. Here’s how popular culture thought about measles before the vaccine marketers took over the narrative:

Measles on TV before the vaccine

3. “A single person infected with the virus can infect more than a dozen unvaccinated people.”

My response: What Dr. Hotez fails to mention is that the majority of people infected during a measles outbreak have been vaccinated! Here’s an article from Utah just yesterday about one guy who got measles, note these health officials don’t sound much like Dr. Hotez, they must not have read the CDC playbook:

“Dr. Dagmar Vitek, the department’s medical director, said in a prepared statement that the individual had been vaccinated for the disease and cases of individuals contracting the virus are rare. There is minimal risk to the general public, the department added.”

4. “Such high levels of transmissibility mean that when the percentage of children in a community who have received the measles vaccine falls below 90 percent to 95 percent, we can start to see major outbreaks.”

My response: Dr. Hotez, boldly and blindly, perpetuates a myth of herd immunity that simply doesn’t even exist in the United States because adult vaccination rates are so low, as the CDC readily admits in this report from 2014:

“Despite longstanding recommendations for use of many vaccines, vaccination coverage among U.S. adults is low.”

CDC’s own numbers — Herd Immunity?

How low you ask? 50% or less is the quick answer, which means any notion that the U.S. population has achieved herd immunity is a farcical myth, as this article from The Hill very clearly explains:

“the concept of herd immunity is largely myth — and completely misunderstood…if we look back over the decades and note the lack of rampant epidemics in our nation, while remembering that vaccine protection is in perpetual decline, the myth of herd immunity quickly unravels. Our society has never achieved this level of herd immunity, yet not a single major outbreak of disease has occurred.”

If only half of America is properly vaccinated, where are the epidemics?

5. “Such a commission would be a throwback to the 2000s, when Representative Dan Burton of Indiana held fruitless hearings and conducted investigations on this topic.”

My response: Dan Burton issued an incredible report explaining exactly how the CDC’s conflicts of interest keep them from honestly evaluating vaccine safety.

“CDC Advisory Committee members who are not allowed to vote on certain recommendations due to financial conflicts of interest are allowed to participate in committee deliberations and advocate specific positions. The Chairman of the CDC’s advisory committee until very recently owned 600 shares of stock in Merck, a pharmaceutical company with an active vaccine division.Members of the CDC’s advisory Committee often fill out incomplete financial disclosure statements, and are not required to provide the missing information by CDC ethics officials. Four out of eight CDC advisory committee members who voted to approve guidelines for the rotavirus vaccine in June 1998 had financial ties to pharmaceutical companies that were developing different versions of the vaccine. 3 out of 5 FDA advisory committee members who voted to approve the rotavirus vaccine in December 1997 had financial ties to pharmaceutical companies that were developing different versions of the vaccine.”

6. “And a documentary alleging a conspiracy at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Vaxxed: From Cover-Up to Catastrophe,” has recently been shown around the country.”

My response: The movie is based on a CDC scientist who blew the whistle and claims he went into a room with other scientists and destroyed documents which showed a connection between the MMR vaccine and autism. That’s a conspiracy? Read the scientist’s statement for yourself, from the law firm he retained to protect himself as a whistleblower!

“I regret that my coauthors 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.”
Are we all O.K. with this?

7. “I’m worried that our nation’s health will soon be threatened because we have not stood up to the pseudoscience and fake conspiracy claims of this movement.”

My response: At the end of this article, I have posted a list of 30 scientific studies from peer-reviewed journals from scientists all over the world, published in 2010 or later. Is this the pseudo-science you are talking about?

8. “There is strong evidence that genetics play a role, and that defects in the brain of children on the autism spectrum occur during pregnancy.”

My response: There’s no such thing as a genetic epidemic. Any science on autism and genetics remains in the first inning, real geneticists will tell you they have no idea (Dr. Hotez is NOT a geneticist), especially when you consider that the word “autism” may actually mean 100 different things since the kids all present so differently.

Great point Congressman!!

9. “Yet I fear that such myths will be used to justify new rounds of hearings or unwarranted investigations of federal agencies, including the C.D.C.”

My response: To not want a vaccine safety commission is to believe that vaccines are 100% safe, which they aren’t. That’s flat-earther talk.

10. “Today, parents in Texas have to live in fear that something as simple as a trip to the mall or the library could expose their babies to measles and that a broader outbreak could occur.”

My response: Nothing more than hyperbolic fear-mongering from the CDC playbook.

11. “Perpetuating phony theories about vaccines and autism isn’t going to help them — and it’s not going to help children on the autism spectrum, either.”

My response: See 30 studies below.

12. Using the term “Anti-vaxxers” in his title

My response: One day before Dr. Hotez’s Op-Ed for the New York Times, an extraordinary article was released in the British Medical Journal by one of their Associate Editors, Dr. Peter Doshi. He noted:

Dr. Peter Doshi of the British Medical Journal
Thirdly, labeling people concerned about the safety of vaccines as “anti-vaccine” risks entrenching positions.
The label (or its derogatory derivative “anti-vaxxer”) is a form of attack. It stigmatizes the mere act of even asking an open question about what is known and unknown about the safety of vaccines.

My Article on Dr. Hotez last week

I wrote an article about Dr. Hotez where I made three basic points:

  1. He has huge conflicts of interest as a vaccine inventor. His whole career is based on one thing: vaccines.
  2. He’s lying about Measles and Herd Immunity, which is irresponsible.
  3. His “proof” that vaccines are not causing autism is six studies which is a wildly inaccurate way to look at what is happening.

More than anything, I hope you’ll take the time to read this article, and challenge whatever you might think about either Dr. Hotez or vaccine-autism science (and read my list of 30 studies below).

Here’s the issue that Dr. Hotez had about the article, these are his words:

“My expectation is that the very least you contact Mr. Handley and explain that vaccines for schistosomiasis and Chagas disease are money-losing endeavors and that I do not stand to gain anything financially. I have never profited from vaccines, nor do I have any hope of profiting from these vaccines. These are neglected tropical diseases of the poorest of the poor and I would appreciate it if you would ask him to issue a retraction and an apology. Thank you! Peter”

And, here’s exactly what I wrote about Dr. Hotez:

Dr. Hotez has million$ of reasons to support vaccines — I’m not sure I have ever seen a biography that was so vaccine-dependent. Amongst his many titles and affiliations, Dr. Hotez is the President of the Sabin Vaccine Institute, Director of the Texas Children’s Hospital Center for Vaccine Development, and his research at the Baylor College of Medicine focuses on “developing vaccines for neglected tropical diseases.” What his biography doesn’t say is that if any of the vaccines he is developing go to market, he would likely make many millions of dollars.

I’m guessing he’s reacting to the part where I say he would “likely make many millions of dollars.”

I’ve changed that part in my article to delete any reference to profits, and I wrote a separate article apologizing to Dr. Hotez.

Of course, I think it’s absurd for Dr. Hotez to say he has “never profited from vaccines” since vaccines are clearly the reason he is employed.

While we’re on the topic, I’d like to know if Dr. Hotez’s recent charm offensive with the media is something he just decided to do altruistically, or if there is a level of coordination to the fact that we are now seeing his face, words, and quotes everywhere, almost immediately after the news about President Trump and Robert F. Kennedy Jr. Coincidence? Doing it all for free?

At any rate, please read my article and make up your own mind:

Dr. Peter Hotez, latest vaccine pitchman, clueless on vaccine-autism science

The Parent Thing

One final thought: it’s hard for me to summon up quite the same level of disgust for Dr. Hotez that I have for his pitchman predecessor Dr. Paul Offit. You see, Dr. Hotez is the parent of a child with autism, just like me. I know it’s not easy, I’m dealing with the same thing he is, and I believe all parents have a certain kinship. At the same time, his public pronouncements also make me furious, and I’ll explain why:

I don’t doubt for a second that Dr. Hotez’s daughter’s autism was genetic (as he has asserted). This is what he believes, and I respect that — I have no doubt some kids were just “born that way.” However, my son’s experience was very different. My wife and I — both Stanford grads — took our son’s decline very, very seriously, and we have met with hundreds of doctors, scientists, and parents who helped us understand what happened to him. Dr. Hotez, when you slam the door on the reality of what happened to my son, you disrespect HIM, and I will never, ever ever tolerate that. He can’t talk, but I can. Your stubborn ignorance is hurting children and falsely reassuring parents.

I’ll leave you with the immortal words of Dr. Bernard Rimland, another parent of a child with autism:

“I was the first to announce the ‘autism epidemic’ in 1995, and I pointed out in that article that excessive vaccines were a plausible cause of the epidemic. As you know, an enormous amount of clinical laboratory research (as opposed to epidemiological research), has been accumulated since that time, supporting my position. (I did not know then that the vaccines contained mercury, although I had been collecting data since 1967 from the mothers of autistic children, on any dental work they may have had during their pregnancy.) The evidence is now overwhelming, despite the misinformation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Institute of Medicine.” — Dr. Bernard Rimland, autism parent

30 Studies Dr. Hotez may want to consider, all published 2010 or later


1. Yale scientists find strong association between vaccinations and anorexia, ocd, and anxiety disorder

Temporal Association of Certain Neuropsychiatric Disorders Following Vaccination of Children and Adolescents: A Pilot Case–Control Study Frontiers in Psychiatry, January 2017, Douglas L. Leslie, Robert A. Kobre, Brian J. Richmand

Summary: “Subjects with newly diagnosed anorexia nervosa were more likely than controls to have had any vaccination in the previous 3 months [hazard ratio (HR) 1.80, 95% confidence interval 1.21–2.68]. Influenza vaccinations during the prior 3, 6, and 12 months were also associated with incident diagnoses of AN, OCD, and an anxiety disorder. Several other associations were also significant with HRs greater than 1.40 (hepatitis A with OCD and AN; hepatitis B with AN; and meningitis with AN and chronic tic disorder). This pilot epidemiologic analysis implies that the onset of some neuropsychiatric disorders may be temporally related to prior vaccinations in a subset of individuals.”

2. Italian scientists find unexpected contaminants in all pediatric vaccines, including lead, stainless steel, tungsten, iron, and chromium

New Quality-Control Investigations on Vaccines: Micro- and Nanocontamination International Journal of Vaccines and Vaccination, January 2017, Dr. Antonietta M. Gatti, Stefano Montanari

Summary: Scientists found contaminants in all vaccines that are not listed on the label of the vaccines. “The analyses carried out show that in all samples checked vaccines contain non biocompatible and bio-persistent foreign bodies which are not declared by the Producers, against which the body reacts in any case. This new investigation represents a new quality control that can be adopted to assess the safety of a vaccine. Our hypothesis is that this contamination is unintentional, since it is probably due to polluted components or procedures of industrial processes (e.g. filtrations) used to produce vaccines, not investigated and not detected by the Producers. If our hypothesis is actually the case, a close inspection of the working places and the full knowledge of the whole procedure of vaccine preparation would probably allow to eliminate the problem.”


3. Israeli and Italian scientists warn that vaccine adjuvants (aluminum) are causing a wide-range of autoimmune conditions, including Sjögren’s Syndrome

Autoimmune/Inflammatory Syndrome Induced by Adjuvants and Sjögren’s Syndrome IMAJ • VOL 18, March-April 2016, Serena Colafrancesco, Carlo Perricone, Yehuda Shoenfeld

Summary: “Several case reports have suggested that both vaccines and silicone may trigger the development of SS [Sjögren’s syndrome, a chronic systemic autoimmune inflammatory condition involving the exocrine glands]. Aluminum is one of the principal adjuvants used in vaccine formulation and may be responsible for the development of ASIA syndrome. It seems that its ability to behave as an adjuvant might be related to evidence that aluminum salts seem to both induce the activation of dendritic cells and complement components and increase the level of chemokine secretion at the injection site… other vaccines including Bacillus Calmette Guérin (BCG), hepatitis A and/or B and human papillomavirus, should be avoided or considered only in selected patients… There is considerable evidence raising the possibility of vaccine-triggered autoimmunity”

4. Infants vaccinated with multiple vaccines at once have much higher hospitalizations and death rates than infants who receive fewer simultaneous vaccines

Combining Childhood Vaccines at One Visit Is Not Safe Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons, Summer 2016, Neil Z. Miller

Summary: “Our study showed that infants who receive several vaccines concurrently, as recommended by CDC, are significantly more likely to be hospitalized or die when compared with infants who receive fewer vaccines simultaneously. It also showed that reported adverse effects were more likely to lead to hospitalization or death in younger infants. The safety of CDC’s childhood vaccination schedule was never affirmed in clinical studies. Vaccines are administered to millions of infants every year, yet health authorities have no scientific data from synergistic toxicity studies on all combinations of vaccines that infants are likely to receive. National vaccination campaigns must be supported by scientific evidence.”

5. Israeli, Canadian, and Colombian scientists show that gardasil vaccine triggers brain inflammation and autoimmunity in mice

Behavioral abnormalities in female mice following administration of aluminum adjuvants and the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine Gardasil Immunol Res, July 2016, Rotem Inbar, Ronen Weiss, Lucija Tomljenovic, Maria-Teresa Arango, Yael Deri, Christopher A, Shaw, Joab Chapman, Miri Blank, Yehuda Shoenfeld

Summary: “Vaccine adjuvants and vaccines may induce autoimmune and inflammatory manifestations in susceptible individuals. To date most human vaccine trials utilize aluminum (Al) adjuvants as placebos despite much evidence showing that Al in vaccine-relevant exposures can be toxic to humans and animals…It appears that Gardasil via its Al adjuvant and HPV antigens has the ability to trigger neuroinflammation and autoimmune reactions, further leading to behavioral changes…In light of these findings, this study highlights the necessity of proceeding with caution with respect to further mass-immunization practices with a vaccine of yet unproven long-term clinical benefit in cervical cancer prevention ”

6. Aluminum in vaccines is highly neurotoxic and exposure levels given to infants have dramatically increased

Aluminum in Childhood Vaccines Is Unsafe Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons, Winter 2016, Neil Z. Miller

Summary: “Infants and young children throughout the world receive high quantities of aluminum from multiple inoculations. Incremental changes to the vaccination schedule during the past several years significantly increased the quantity of aluminum in childhood shots. Numerous studies provide compelling evidence that injected aluminum can be detrimental to health. Aluminum is capable of remaining in cells long after vaccination and may cause neurologic and autoimmune disorders. During early development, the child’s brain is more susceptible to toxins and the kidneys are less able to eliminate them. Thus, children have a greater risk than adults of adverse reactions to aluminum in vaccines. Millions of children every year are injected with vaccines containing mercury and aluminum despite well-established experimental evidence of the potential for additive or synergistic toxicity when an organism is exposed to two or more toxic metals.”

7. Alzheimer’s victims have very high brain aluminum levels, a potent neurotoxin

Aluminium in brain tissue in familial Alzheimer’s disease Journal of Trace Elements in Medicine and Biology, November 2016, Ambreen Mirza, Andrew King, Claire Troakes, Christopher Exley

Summary: “Aluminium has been shown to be present in brain tissue in sporadic Alzheimer’s disease. We have made the first ever measurements of aluminium in brain tissue from 12 donors diagnosed with familial Alzheimer’s disease. The concentrations of aluminium were extremely high, for example, there were values in excess of 10􏰂g/g tissue dry wt. in 5 of the 12 individuals. Overall, the concentrations were higher than all previous measurements of brain aluminium except cases of known aluminium-induced encephalopathy. We have supported our quantitative analyses using a novel method of aluminium-selective fluorescence microscopy to visualise aluminium in all lobes of every brain investigated. The unique quantitative data and the stunning images of aluminium in familial Alzheimer’s disease brain tissue raise the spectre of aluminium’s role in this devastating disease.”


8. Vaccines implicated in epidemic of food allergies

Evidence that Food Proteins in Vaccines Cause the Development of Food Allergies and Its Implications for Vaccine Policy Journal of Developing Drugs, 2015, Vinu Arumugham

Summary: “Numerous studies have demonstrated that food proteins contained in vaccines/injections induce food allergy. The IOM’s authoritative report has concluded the same. Allergen quantities in vaccines are unregulated. Today kids are more atopic. C-section births bias the newborn’s immune system towards IgE synthesis due to sub-optimal gut microbiome [19]. C-section birth rates have gone up 50% in the last few decades. The vaccine schedule has increased the number of vaccine shots to 30–40 and up to five vaccines are simultaneously administered to children. Vaccines also contain adjuvants such as aluminum compounds and pertussis toxin that bias towards IgE synthesis. Given these conditions, the predictable and observed outcome is a food allergy epidemic.”


9. Chinese scientists find mice injected with thimerosal (vaccine mercury) have behavioral impairments similar to autism

Transcriptomic Analyses of Neurotoxic Effects in Mouse Brain After Intermittent Neonatal Administration of Thimerosal, Toxicological Sciences, March 2014, Xialong Li, Fengqin Qu, Wenjuan Xe, Fengli Wang, Hongmei Lui

Summary: “Thimerosal-treated mice exhibited neural development delay, social interaction deficiency, and inclination of depression. Apparent neuropathological changes were also observed in adult mice neonatally treated with thimerosal. High-throughput RNA sequencing of autistic-behaved mice brains revealed the alternation of a number of canonical path- ways involving neuronal development, neuronal synaptic function, and the dysregulation of endocrine system.”

10. Neurodevelopmental disorders are much more common in children who received mercury-containing vaccines

A Dose-Response Relationship between Organic Mercury Exposure from Thimerosal-Containing Vaccines and Neurodevelopmental Disorders Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health, 2014, David A. Geier, Brian S. Hooker, Janet K. Kern, Paul G. King, Lisa K. Sykes and Mark R. Geier

Summary: “On a per microgram of organic-Hg basis, PDD (odds ratio (OR) = 1.054), specific developmental delay (OR = 1.035), tic disorder (OR = 1.034) and hyperkinetic syndrome of childhood (OR = 1.05) cases were significantly more likely than controls to receive increased organic-Hg exposure. This study provides new epidemiological evidence supporting a significant relationship between increasing organic-Hg exposure from TCVs and the subsequent risk of an ND diagnosis.”

11. UC-Boulder Professor: The autism epidemic is real and therefore must be the product of an environmental factor

A comparison of temporal trends in United States autism prevalence to trends in suspected environmental factors Environmental Health, 2014, Cynthia D Nevison

Summary: “Diagnosed autism prevalence has risen dramatically in the U.S over the last several decades and continued to trend upward as of birth year 2005. The increase is mainly real and has occurred mostly since the late 1980s.”


12. Fully vaccinated children require much more emergency care than undervaccinated children

A Population-Based Cohort Study of Undervaccination in 8 Managed Care Organizations Across the United States JAMA Pediatrics, January 2013, Jason M. Glanz, PhD; Sophia R. Newcomer, MPH; Komal J. Narwaney, MD, PhD; Simon J. Hambidge, MD, PhD; Matthew F. Daley, MD; Nicole M. Wagner, MPH

Summary: “Children who were undervaccinated because of pa- rental choice had lower rates of outpatient visits, lower rates of ED [emergency room] encounters.. undervaccinated children had lower outpatient visit rates compared with children who were age-appropriately vaccinated.”

13. Israeli and Italian researchers demonstrate that exposure to aluminum in vaccines can lead to autoimmune and brain dysfunction

Autoimmune/inflammatory syndrome induced by adjuvants (ASIA) 2013: Unveiling the pathogenic, clinical and diagnostic aspects Journal of Autoimmunity, October 2013, Carlo Perricone, Serena Colafrancesco, Roei D. Mazor, Alessandra Soriano, Yehuda Shoenfeld

Summary: “The data herein illustrate the critical role of environmental factors in the induction of autoimmunity. Indeed, it is the interplay of genetic susceptibility and environment that is the major player for the initiation of breach of tolerance. Several neurologic demyelinating diseases have been reported following vaccination, the main being Guillaine Barré syndrome (GBS). Another demyelinating disease associated with vaccines is the acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM). This is an inflammatory disease of the central nervous system frequently occurring post-vaccination. Rabies, diphtheria tetanus polio, smallpox, measles, mumps, rubella, Japanese B encephalitis, pertussis, influ-enza, hepatitis B, and the Hog vaccines have been called to be involved.”

14. Canadian researchers: Aluminum in vaccines can cause both autoimmunity and neurological damage

Aluminum in the central nervous system (CNS): toxicity in humans and animals, vaccine adjuvants, and autoimmunity Immunol Res, 2013, Chris Shaw, L. Tomljenovic

Summary: “In young children, a highly significant correlation exists between the number of pediatric aluminum-adjuvanted vaccines administered and the rate of autism spectrum disorders. Many of the features of aluminum- induced neurotoxicity may arise, in part, from autoimmune reactions, as part of the ASIA syndrome. Aluminum is added to vaccines to help the vaccine work more effectively, but unlike dietary aluminum which will usually clear rapidly from the body, aluminum used in vaccines and injected is designed to provide a long-lasting cellular exposure. Thus, the problem with vaccine- derived aluminum is really twofold: It drives the immune response even in the absence of a viral or bacterial threat and it can make its way into the central nervous system. It is not really a matter of much debate that aluminum in various forms can be neurotoxic.”

15. Scientists from Mexico and Israel explain adjuvants (aluminum) used in vaccines can induce autoimmunity

Autoimmune/inflammatory syndrome induced by adjuvants (Shoenfeld’s syndrome): clinical and immunological spectrum Expert Rev. Clin. Immunol. 2013 Olga Vera-Lastra, Gabriela Medina, Maria Del-Pilar Cruz Dominguez, Luis J Jara

Summary: “The activation of the immune system by adjuvants, a desirable effect, could trigger manifestations of autoimmunity or autoimmune disease. Recently, a new syndrome was introduced, autoimmune/inflammatory syndrome induced by adjuvants (ASIA), that includes postvaccination phenomena, macrophagic myofasciitis, Gulf War syndrome and siliconosis. Various adjuvants used in vaccines enhance a specific immune response against antigens and may produce autoimmunity and AID both in experimental models and humans. The clinical and laboratory data support an association between adjuvants and autoimmune diseases.”

16. infants receiving mercury-containing vaccines had much higher rates of autism than infants receiving vaccines without mercury

A two-phase study evaluating the relationship between Thimerosal-containing vaccine administration and the risk for an autism spectrum disorder diagnosis in the United States Translational Neurodegeneration, David A. Geier, Brian S. Hooker, Janet K. Kern, Paul G. King, Lisa K. Sykes, Mark R. Geier

Summary: “The present study provides new epidemiological evidence supporting an association between increasing organic-Hg [mercury] exposure from Thimerosal-containing childhood vaccines and the subsequent risk of ASD [autism] diagnosis.”

17. British scientists sounds the alarm on aluminum toxicity and questions lack of research on aluminum used in vaccines

Human exposure to aluminium Environmental Science Processes & Impacts, 2013, Christopher Exley

Summary: “The immunopotency of aluminium has been known for at least 100 years and still today forms the basis for the use of aluminium salts as adjuvants in vaccinations and allergy therapies. What is then surprising is the uncertainty regarding their mechanism of action and burgeoning evidence of their toxicity in potentially susceptible individuals.”

18. Israeli, Italian, and Canadian researchers tie HPV vaccine to Primary Ovarian Failure

Human Papilloma Virus Vaccine and Primary Ovarian Failure: Another Facet of the Autoimmune/Inflammatory Syndrome Induced by Adjuvants American Journal of Reproductive Immunology, 2013, Selena Colafrancesco, Carlo Perricone, Lucija Tomljenovic, Yehuda Shoenfeld

Summary: “We documented here the evidence of the potential of the HPV vaccine to trigger a life-disabling autoimmune condition. The increasing number of similar reports of post HPV vaccine-linked autoimmunity and the uncertainty of long-term clinical benefits of HPV vaccination are a matter of public health that warrants further rigorous inquiry.”


19. Infants who received more vaccines had much higher hospitalization and death rates than infants who received fewer vaccines

Relative trends in hospitalizations and mortality among infants by the number of vaccine doses and age, based on the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), 1990–2010 Human and Experimental Toxicology, 2012, GS Goldman, NZ Miller

Summary: “The hospitalization rate increased linearly from 11.0% (107 of 969) for 2 doses to 23.5% (661 of 2817) for 8 doses and decreased linearly from 20.1% (154 of 765) for children aged <0.1 year to 10.7% (86 of 801) for children aged 0.9 year. Our findings show a positive correlation between the number of vaccine doses administered and the percentage of hospitalizations and deaths. Since vaccines are given to millions of infants annually, it is imperative that health authorities have scientific data from synergistic toxicity studies on all combinations of vaccines that infants might receive. Finding ways to increase vaccine safety should be the highest priority.”

20. Israeli scientists explain role vaccine adjuvants (aluminum) are playing in autoimmune diseases

The spectrum of ASIA: ‘Autoimmune (Auto-inflammatory) Syndrome induced by Adjuvants’ Lupus, 2012, N Agmon-Levin, GRV Hughes, Y Shoenfeld

Summary: “It seems that the role of adjuvants [aluminum in vaccines] in the pathogenesis of immune-mediated diseases can no longer be ignored, and the medical community must look towards producing safer adjuvants. Another cornerstone of ASIA is the complex interaction between autoimmunity and adjuvanted vaccines. On the one hand vaccines are beneficial for the vast majority of subjects including those who suffer from autoimmune-rheumatic diseases as delineated in this issue by van Assen and Bijl.16 On the other hand in a small minority of individuals vaccine can trigger the appearance of autoan- tibodies as documented by Vista et al.17 and Perdan-Pirkmajer et al.18 Moreover, a link between immunization and defined autoimmune diseases has been reported elsewhere and herein.”

21. Polish scientists propose new vaccine schedule, express concern at high rate of vaccine adverse events

Neurologic adverse events following vaccination Prog Health Sci, 2012, Sienkiewicz D., Kułak W., Okurowska-Zawada B., Paszko-Patej G.

Summary: “Thus, it is not reasonable to assume that manipulation of the immune system through an increasing number of vaccinations during critical periods of brain development will not result in adverse neurodevelopmental outcomes. European countries have different models of vaccination that have been modified in recent decades. In Scandinavian countries, which have the lowest infant mortality, vaccinations are voluntary and infants receive their first vaccination at 3 months of age. In the first year of life, they receive 9 recommended vaccinations, and at 18 months — MMR. The acellular pertussis vaccine (DTaP) is used, as well as IPV. BCG and Hepatitis B vaccines are administered to children from high risk groups. Similar vaccination schedules exist in other European countries, where the vaccination of neonates was abandoned and a ban on the use of thimerosal in vaccines was introduced. Note also that Scandinavian countries have the lowest rates of autism compared to other developed countries in which children are vaccinated much earlier and with greater number of vaccines.”

22. Canadian researchers review literature on autoimmunity and neurological risks from vaccine adjuvant aluminum, express doubts regarding safety testing

Mechanisms of aluminum adjuvant toxicity and autoimmunity in pediatric populations, Lupus, 2012, L Tomljenovic, CA Shaw

Summary: “Immune challenges during early development, including those vaccine-induced, can lead to permanent detrimental alterations of the brain and immune function. Experimental evidence also shows that simultaneous administration of as little as two to three immune adjuvants can overcome genetic resistance to autoimmunity. In spite of the widespread agreement that vaccines are largely safe and serious adverse complications are extremely rare, a close scrutiny of the scientific literature does not support this view. For example, to date, the clinical trials that could adequately address vaccine safety issues have not been con- ducted (i.e., comparing health outcomes in vaccinated versus non-vaccinated children). Infants and young children should not be viewed as ‘‘small adults.’’ Their unique physiology makes them much more vulnerable to noxious environ- mental insults in comparison with the adult population. In spite of this, children are routinely exposed to much higher levels of Al vaccine adjuvants than adults, even though adequate safety data on these compounds are lacking. That Al vaccine adjuvants can induce significant autoimmune conditions in humans can hardly be disputed, although still debatable is how common such side effects are. However, the existing data (or lack thereof) raise questions on whether the current vaccines aimed at pediatric populations can be accepted as having adequate safety profiles. Because infants and children represent those who may be most at risk for complications following vaccination, a more rigorous evaluation of potential vaccine-related adverse health impacts in pediatric populations than what has been provided to date is urgently needed.”

23. Danish researchers found children 8-times more likely to have a febrile seizure on the day of vaccination of DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccine

Risk of Febrile Seizures and Epilepsy After Vaccination With Diphtheria, Tetanus, Acellular Pertussis, Inactivated Poliovirus, and Haemophilus Influenzae Type b JAMA 2012, Yuelian Sun, Jakob Christensen, Anders Hviid, Jiong Li

Summary: “DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccination was associated with an increased risk of febrile seizures on the day of the first 2 vaccinations given at 3 and 5 months.”


24. Canadian researchers report vaccine aluminum and autism prevalence related

Do aluminum vaccine adjuvants contribute to the rising prevalence of autism? J Inorg Biochem. Tomljenovic L, Shaw CA.

Summary: “Dysfunctional immunity and impaired brain function are core deficits in ASD. Aluminum (Al), the most commonly used vaccine adjuvant, is a demonstrated neurotoxin and a strong immune stimulator. Hence, adjuvant Al has the potential to induce neuroimmune disorders. The application of the Hill’s criteria to these data indicates that the correlation between Al in vaccines and ASD may be causal. Because children represent a fraction of the population most at risk for complications following exposure to Al, a more rigorous evaluation of Al adjuvant safety seems warranted.. By satisfying eight of the Hill’s criteria for establishing causality applicable to our study, we show that Al-adjuvanted vaccines may be a significant etiological factor in the rising prevalence of ASD in the Western world. We also show that children from countries with the highest ASD prevalence appear to have a much higher exposure to Al from vaccines, particularly at 2 months of age. ”

25. Harvard researchers find vaccine mercury impacts neurodevelopment in rats

Maternal Thimerosal Exposure Results in Aberrant Cerebellar Oxidative Stress, Thyroid Hormone Metabolism, and Motor Behavior in Rat Pups; Sex- and Strain-Dependent Effects Cerebellum, 2012, Z. L. Sulkowski & T. Chen & S. Midha & A. M. Zavacki & Elizabeth M. Sajdel-Sulkowska

Summary: “Our data indicate that maternal TM exposure results in a delayed auditory maturation and impaired motor learning in rat pups. Factors that may contribute to these abnormalities include increased cerebellar oxidative stress and decreased D2 activity resulting local intracerebellar T3 deficiency and altered TH-dependent gene expression. Indeed, provided here is the first evidence of altered TH-dependent gene expression following TM exposure. Our data thus demonstrate a negative neurodevelopmental impact of perinatal TM exposure, which appears to be both strain- and sex-dependent. Although, additional studies are needed, data derived from TM exposure in rats may provide clues relevant to understanding neurodevelopmental consequences of TM exposure in humans.”


26. Suny-stony brook scientists find boys receiving the hepatitis b vaccine series were three times more likely to have autism

Hepatitis B Vaccination of Male Neonates and Autism Diagnosis, NHIS 1997–2002 Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health, April 2010, Carolyn Gallagher and Melody Goodman

Summary: “Boys vaccinated as neonates had threefold greater odds for autism diagnosis compared to boys never vaccinated or vaccinated after the first month of life. Findings suggest that U.S. male neonates vaccinated with the hepatitis B vac- cine prior to 1999 (from vaccination record) had a threefold higher risk for parental report of autism diagnosis compared to boys not vaccinated as neonates during that same time period.”

27. British and Swedish scientists raise concerns about limited understanding of vaccine aluminum’s impact on the human body, raise risk of autoimmune response

The immunobiology of aluminium adjuvants: how do they really work? Trends in Immunology 2010, Christopher Exley, Peter Siesjo, Hakan Eriksson

Summary: “Aluminium adjuvants potentiate the immune response, thereby ensuring the potency and efficacy of typically sparingly available antigen. Their concomitant critical importance in mass vaccination programmes may have prompted recent intense interest in understanding how they work and their safety. Progress in these areas is stymied, however, by a lack of accessible knowledge pertaining to the bioinorganic chemistry of aluminium adjuvants, and, consequently, the inappropriate application and interpretation of experimental models of their mode of action.. In relation to this possible ‘indirect adjuvanticity’ there are burgeoning examples in the scientific literature of aluminium salts inducing sen- sitization to substances that might not normally be considered as antigens. For example, such effects may contribute towards allergies to foods ”

28. Baby monkeys given U.S. vaccine schedule had brain abnormalities in region responsible for social and emotional development

Influence of pediatric vaccines on amygdala growth and opioid ligand binding in rhesus macaque infants: A pilot study Acta Neurobiol Exp, 2010, Laura Hewitson, Brian J. Lopresti, Carol Stott

Summary: “The data suggest that vaccine exposure may be asso- ciated with significant disturbances in central opioidergic pathways in this model… Volumetric analyses identified significantly greater total brain volume in exposed compared with unexposed animals at both measured time points. These results raise the possibility that multiple vaccine exposures during the previous 3–4 months may have had a significant impact on brain growth and development.”

29. Scientists raise concerns about denial of environmental toxin link to autism, review lietrature

Sorting out the spinning of autism: heavy metals and the question of incidence Acta Neurobiol, 2010 Mary Catherine DeSoto and Robert T. Hitlan

Summary: “In this paper, we argue that increasingly over the past decade, positions that deny a link to environmental toxins and autism are based on relatively weak science and are disregarding the bulk of scientific literature. The question about toxic exposure and autism is open, with the weight of evidence favoring a connection that is not well understood. Although it is not possible to say with certainty, it seems likely that the connection would be mediated by genetic susceptibility and ability to detoxify. That is, some people have genotypes that confer higher susceptibility to toxic exposures. If so, then 50 years ago few people would have had enough toxic expo- sure to have the neurological changes that result in autism.”

30. Researchers warn of sizable difference in individual reaction to vaccines, stress need to avoid increasing side effects of vaccines

Interindividual variations in the efficacy and toxicity of vaccines Toxicology 2010, Thomas C, Moridani M

Summary: “A number of currently available vaccines have shown significant differences in the magnitude of immune responses and toxicity in individuals undergoing vaccination. A number of factors may be involved in the variations in immune responses, which include age, gender, race, amount and quality of the antigen, the dose administered and to some extent the route of administration, and genetics of immune system. Hence, it becomes imperative that researchers have tools such as genomics and proteomics at their disposal to predict which set of population is more likely to be non-responsive or develop toxicity to vaccines.. With the increasing number of side effects associated with a number of vaccines reported over the years, it has become imperative to develop new technologies that can effectively assist in the development and evaluation of vaccines for efficacy and toxicity.”

J.B. Handley is the father of a child with Autism. He and his wife co-founded Generation Rescue, Jenny McCarthy’s autism charity. He spent his career in the private equity industry and received his undergraduate degree with honors from Stanford University. He is also the author of “The Only Vaccine Guide a New Parent Will Ever Need” , An Angry Father’s Guide to Vaccine-Autism Science”, and “7 reasons CDC employees should be “crying in the hallwaysMr. Handley has started a podcast called “How to End the Autism Epidemic” — you might enjoy his first six interviews: