I am beginning to wonder if National Autism Association are actually capable of discussing autism without lying any more. Its becoming more and more blatant. Today, they have released a press release of support for Andrew Wakefield which is simply bizarre:
Parents and advocacy groups around the globe are asking Englandâ€™s General Medical Council (GMC) to cancel the â€œfitness to practiceâ€ inquiry that begins today against Dr. Andy Wakefield, and Professors Walker-Smith and Murch. Advocates say the GMC should instead be asking why so many kids are sick, especially in light of an apparently suppressed analysis showing that autism rates in England are as high as 1 in 58. The medical establishment is being criticized for doing little to find the cause, treat the kids, or prevent new cases.
Uh, no, no they’re not. Parents around the world (of whom I am one) are _not_ asking the GMC to cancel the hearings against Andrew Wakefield. I have read numerous letters, comments in blogs and on forums from parents who are quite happy to see the GMC conduct an inquiry into Wakefield’s behaviour.
An what the hell is this ‘suppressed analysis’ rubbish? Its not suppressed at all. The leaked study was not published and according to the lead author:
So, what are the facts on autism? Does the one-in-58 figure hold up? Baron-Cohen says their study of Cambridgeshire children, which has been running for five years, comes out with a range of figures from one in 58, to one in 200, depending on various factors. The draft report, he says, â€œis as accurate as jottings in a notebookâ€.
The NAA – and anyone who really seriously believes this twaddle – really need to take a long hard look at their motives. Why are they doing this? They _know_ the claim that the data from Baron-Cohen’s study is suppressed is rubbish. What this press release is is simply propaganda. Why are the NAA purposefully lying?
And they continue:
In the first of 5000 cases to be heard in a special vaccine court in the US last month, evidence presented demonstrated that 12-year old Michelle Cedillo began regressing into autism just a week after her MMR vaccination at 15 months. The plausible cause was a persistent measles infection which took hold through an immune system weakened by mercury in vaccines administered prior to the MMR.
Well, the NAA must’ve been reading a different set of transcripts to me. The evidence presented, utilising the video evidence, and interpreted by one of the worlds leading diagnostic authorities on autism clearly showed Michelle Cedillo was autistic way before she had her MMR jabs. It was also clearly demonstrated that the evidence presented to support the assertion that MMR was a ‘plausible cause’ of autism was a joke. The MMR/autism theory revolves around the idea of measles from the MMR travelling to the gut then the brain and causing damage that results in autism. Without measles being present, there is no MMR/autism hypothesis.
Here’s the sworn testimony of Stephen Bustin, _the_ world expert in the technique Wakefieldâ€™s lab of choice screwed up:
What I immediately observed was that they had forgotten to do the RT stepâ€¦….If you detect a target that is apparently measles virus in the absence of an RT step by definition it canâ€™t be measles virus because it has to be DNA. Itâ€™s a very simple concept. At least it is to me. Itâ€™s not to everyone elseâ€¦…[b]ecause measles virus doesnâ€™t exist as a DNA molecule in nature, they cannot be detecting measles virusâ€¦.
We need to be absolutely clear about this. This isn’t an _opinion_ Bustin was expressing. These were findings. He was in the O’Leary lab for (if I recall correctly) about 1,000 hours.
Wakefield _never found measles virus_ .
Then it gets really surreal:
The charges originated from internet blogger Brian Deer, who many parents have suggested may be linked to the pharmaceutical industry. â€œThis is nothing more than a witch hunt brought against scientists willing to undertake ground-breaking research challenging the assumption that autism is an inherited untreatable psychiatric disorder that cannot be prevented. Implicating the safety of vaccines such as MMR isnâ€™t acceptable to drug companies or government officials who want to protect the vaccine program itself at the cost of the health of children,â€ said Mr. Bono.
Brian’s an internet blogger? Weird. last I hears he was a freelance journalist. Certainly the readers of his Times pieces and Channel 4 television reports would think so.
Mr. Bono also needs to internalise a few basic facts.
1) The MMR hypothesis has been on the table since ’97. So far there has been absolutely no valid research supporting the idea that MMR causes autism or contributes to the development of autism in any way. If there was, why was it not presented at the recent Cedillo hearing?
2) Since ’97 the MMR uptake fell to nearly 80% at one point. If, as the NAA suggest, autism has skyrocketed to 1 in 58 then how is it that MMR uptake has plummeted whilst autism rates have skyrocketed.
3) I would ask these many parents that the NAA know to back up their allegation that Brian Deer is linked to the pharmaceutical industry. I’m a parent. I don’t think Brian is a big pharma shill. I also think its a particularly pathetic whiny little stab.
4) This is not a witch hunt. This is a look at a man who _has_ put the health of children at risk. Measles and Mumps have increased four fold since ’97. One English child and several Irish kids died from Measles. Approx 12% of measles sufferers required hospitalisation.
Andrew Wakefield hid the results that he didn’t like. Here is Nick Chadwick on the original Lancet paper:
Q So you personally tested while you were in Dr. Wakefieldâ€™s lab gut biopsy material, CSF and PBMCs?
A Yes, thatâ€™s right.
Q And all the results were either negative, or if they were positive it always turned out that they were false positives?
A Yes, thatâ€™s correct.
Q Did you inform Dr. Wakefield of the negative results?
A Yes. Yes.
Andrew Wakefield conducted poor science. He hid the results that he knew would scupper his poor science. Children have died and have been hospitalised as a result of this appalling dereliction of medical duty.