Those who have been my subscribers any length of time know where I stand on the mercury-autism link. There isn’t one!

Now a new study has shown yet again that exposure to thimerosal-containing vaccines in infancy or in the womb is not associated with an increased risk for developing autism.

Of course mere facts and good science don’t worry the Internet “experts”, who ramble on about conspiracies to hide the truth, as if every scientist and doctor in the world was a corrupted puppet of Big Pharma.

They have their prejudice and are not going to let mere evidence sway them from their rigid views.

The fact is, as I have said often, kids get autism who have never had any vaccinations, never mind whether with mercury or not.

Moreover there is the problem of explaining why boys have a far higher incidence of autism than girls. That suggests genes are at least partly involved. Mercury should not selectively attack one gender or the other.

This latest study should put the mercury theory to bed once and for all (provided Joe Mercola and writer’s like him get a grip on the evidence). It showed that children who developed autism spectrum disorder (ASD) actually had less exposure to vaccines with mercury than children who developed normally.

Researchers even looked into the possibility of damage caused by vaccines given to the children’s mothers while they were pregnant and still found no connection. Thimerosal was removed from most vaccines given to infants and children soon after the study participants were born. The one exception is most flu vaccines, which still contain the preservative.

The ASD controversy rages still and we are not really any nearer understanding this awful impediment.

Dr Andrew Wakefield’s study showing autism was associated with “rogue” measles virus loose in the gut of autistic kids is the only study to date which has shown any connection between vaccination and autism. The only one, ya hear? [Gawsh, I’ve lived in the US so many years now I’m starting to sound American!)

Of course they trashed Dr Wakefield with an unprecedented “witch hunt” style personal vendetta against him. But I think he might have had something: I know kids who have not been vaccinated but developed autism. They had a vaccinated sibling with autism and so may have “caught” autism, which would fit with the rogue virus model.

Meantime, cases of autism continue to rise throughout the world. The CDC now estimates that as many as one in 110 children in the U.S. develop autism, though in other countries the actual incidence is hotly debated, never mind whether it is rising or not.

Let me finish by repeating the hard-to-swallow truth: that children with the greatest mercury exposures had slightly lower rates of autism than those who received fewer mercury-containing vaccines or none at all.

This was a very nicely designed and carried out study that should be the end of the discussion. Anyone still touting the mercury story is stuck to yesterday’s science.

[Freed, G. et al. Pediatrics, March 1, 2010, Parental Vaccine Safety Concerns 2009.]