Kelli Ann Davis doesn't get it

23 Aug

Over on Orac’s blog, a discussion is ongoing about (you guessed it) thiomersal.

One of the usual antivax canards is played beautifully by Kelli Ann Davis when she says:

So Phoenix Woman [another commenter], can you explain to me what the skull and crossbones is doing on the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) if thimerosal is not a poison

This is top notch antivax stupidity. Not only does she entirely miss the point of ‘Phoenix Woman’s’ comment (which was not that thiomersal was not a poison) she also infers that the fact that thiomersal is a poison means that its automatically going to cause damage. She conveniently forgets – or doesn’t care – that the adage ‘the dose makes the poison‘ always applies.

And of course we have the scare tactic of mentioning the skull and crossbones.

Thing is, there are plenty of other Toxic substances used routinely in medicine. Lets have a look at Warafrin – which is at one level rat poison and at another level an anticoagulant. And hey – look at that – the MSDS sheet has a skull and crossbones on it.

Common clinical indications for warfarin use are atrial fibrillation, the presence of artificial heart valves, deep venous thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, antiphospholipid syndrome and, occasionally, after myocardial infarction.

And also

To this day, coumarins are used as rodenticides for controlling rats and mice in residential, industrial, and agricultural areas. Warfarin is both odorless and tasteless, and is effective when mixed with food bait, because the rodents will return to the bait and continue to feed over a period of days until a lethal dose is accumulated.

So, lets spell it out nice and slow for Kelli Ann – the dose makes the poison.

And so, lets have a look at the current dose levels of thiomersal in vaccine shall we?

For an ‘average’ person of 154 pounds, there is 6mg (miligrams) – or 6000 micrograms(µg)) of mercury occurring naturally in the body. So, roughly, a person of 25 pounds has 1mg (1000µg) of mercury (or, to put it another way, 1 pound of body mass gives us 40µg). A healthy newborn weighs on average about 7.5 pounds which gives a mercury body burden of approximately 303µg of mercury.

When we look at the FDA thimerosal content of vaccines currently mandated and add them all up we see that we get 239.2µg of mercury – way under what occurs naturally in the body of a healthy 7.5 pound newborn.

Now, this is not even a fair comparison. I have added up all the vaccines for a child of 6. Including doubling up on doses of a vaccine made by different manufacturers. Quite obviously a child won’t get a Td jab from two different manufacturers at one time. I have also included all the flu jabs – again, no one will get all flu jabs in a single flu season.

The maths is quite clear. There is more mercury existing naturally in our bodies – even those of a 7.5 pound newborn – than the combined total of every single thiomersal containing vaccine on the market.

104 Responses to “Kelli Ann Davis doesn't get it”

  1. MariaLu August 31, 2008 at 01:35 #

    Alumium is not heavy but it may be toxic-depending on a myriad of factors- and there are plenty of published manuscripts on the issue.

    J Child Neurol. 2008 Jun;23(6):614-9. Epub 2008 Feb 15.
    Macrophagic myofasciitis in children is a localized reaction to vaccination.Lach B, Cupler EJ.
    Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
    Macrophagic myofasciitis is a novel, “inflammatory myopathy” described after a variety of vaccinations, almost exclusively in adults. We examined the relevance of histological findings of this myopathy to the clinical presentation in pediatric patients. Muscle biopsies from 8 children (7 months to 6 years old) with histological features of macrophagic myofasciitis were reviewed and correlated with the clinical manifestations. Patients underwent quadriceps muscle biopsy for suspected mitochondrial disease (4 patients), spinal muscular atrophy (2 patients), myoglobinuria (1 patient), and hypotonia with motor delay (1 patient). All biopsies showed identical granulomas composed of periodic acid-Schiff-positive and CD68-positive macrophages. Characteristic aluminum hydroxide crystals were identified by electron microscopy in 2 cases. The biopsy established diagnoses other than macrophagic myofasciitis in 5 patients: spinal muscular atrophy (2), Duchenne muscular dystrophy (1), phospho-glycerate kinase deficiency (1), and cytochrome c oxidase deficiency (1). Three children with manifestations and/or a family history of mitochondrial disease had otherwise morphologically normal muscle. All children had routine vaccinations between 2 months and 1 year before the biopsy, with up to 11 intramuscular injections, including the biopsy sites. There was no correlation between histological findings of macrophagic myofasciitis in biopsies and the clinical symptoms. We believe that macrophagic myofasciitis represents a localized histological hallmark of previous immunization with the aluminum hydroxide adjuvants contained in vaccines, rather than a primary or distinct inflammatory muscle disease.


    Not neurotoxic? ARe you sure?
    More examples
    Rev Lat Am Enfermagem. 2008 Jan-Feb;16(1):151-7. Links
    Aluminum as a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease.Ferreira PC, Piai Kde A, Takayanagui AM, Segura-Muñoz SI.
    College of Nursing, University of São Paulo at Ribeirão Preto, SP, Brazil.

    The purpose of the study was to condense existing scientific evidence about the relation between aluminum (Al) exposure and risk for the development of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD), evaluating its long-term effects on the population’s health. A systematic literature review was carried out in two databases, MEDLINE and LILACS, between 1990 and 2005, using the uniterms: “Aluminum exposure and Alzheimer Disease” and “Aluminum and risk for Alzheimer Disease”. After application of the Relevance Test, 34 studies were selected, among which 68% established a relation between Al and AD, 23.5% were inconclusive and 8.5% did not establish a relation between Al and AD. Results showed that Al is associated to several neurophysiologic processes that are responsible for the characteristic degeneration of AD. In spite of existing polemics all over the world about the role of Al as a risk factor for AD, in recent years, scientific evidence has demonstrated that Al is associated with the development of AD.

    Arch Toxicol. 2008 Jul 31.
    Aluminium and lead: molecular mechanisms of brain toxicity.Verstraeten SV, Aimo L, Oteiza PI.
    Department of Biological Chemistry, IIMHNO (UBA) and IQUIFIB (UBA-CONICET), School of Pharmacy and Biochemistry, University of Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina.

    The fact that aluminium (Al) and lead (Pb) are both toxic metals to living organisms, including human beings, was discovered a long time ago. Even when Al and Pb can reach and accumulate in almost every organ in the human body, the central nervous system is a particular target of the deleterious effects of both metals. Select human population can be at risk of Al neurotoxicity, and Al is proposed to be involved in the etiology of neurodegenerative diseases. Pb is a widespread environmental hazard, and the neurotoxic effects of Pb are a major public health concern. In spite of the numerous efforts and the accumulating evidence in this area of research, the mechanisms of Al and Pb neurotoxicity are still not completely elucidated. This review will particularly address the involvement of oxidative stress, membrane biophysics alterations, deregulation of cell signaling, and the impairment of neurotransmission as key aspects involved Al and Pb neurotoxicity .

  2. passionlessDrone August 31, 2008 at 03:59 #

    Hi Alryc –

    “The thing about cytokine production is that just about anything can and will produce one and I assume an immune response is definitely in the list of things that can.”

    Hahaha. You know what has been demonstrated not to create a persistent TH2 shift in cytokine production? The previous version of the DTAP vaccine! This isn’t about simply ‘provoking’ an immune response, but changing the profile of the immune response, and keeping it there for at least two months. If one thing gets clearer about continuing this discussion, it is that the gross over simplifications come back to roost straight from the mouth of those that would claim themselves the bastions of sound reasoning.

    The logical fallacies of your argument (and, ahem, ‘assumption’) are large and cumbersome, yet you cannot see them. Why not argue your way out of the logical conclusion of your assumption?

    If a immune response were capable of generating an abnormal shift in cytokine production, it wouldn’t be found to be abnormal, now would it? People have immune responses all the time, if your assumption is correct, what reason do you propose that an difference was found between the two vaccines, much less between DTAP and a normal range?

    – pD

  3. alyric August 31, 2008 at 14:19 #

    This is getting boring….

    “If a immune response were capable of generating an abnormal shift in cytokine production, it wouldn’t be found to be abnormal, now would it?”

    There you go again, interpretation baloney. We don’t know that any of it is ‘abnormal’. The significance or otyherwise of this is yet to be determined – or so the authors said. Why don’t you wait and see what, if anything, pans out?

    These antivaxxers – perfectly capable of ignoring any amount of visible verified data about vaccine ‘toxins; and run around hysterically about what is at best preliminary data and since this is cytokines, make that highly preliminary data.

  4. Sullivan August 31, 2008 at 16:44 #

    Kelli Ann,

    you can drop the “pssst” thing whenever you want. Or keep it. I think it makes you look a bit silly, but if it works for you, have fun with it.

    Note in my responses how I start with “Kev,”

    That indicates that I realize I am directing my comments to someone named “Kev” and not “Kelli Ann”.

    I like how the dose is important when you want it to be (dmsa) and not when you don’t (mercury). I also like how you avoid the mistake that the skull and crossbones isn’t on the msds. Also that the real information on the msds does not indicate that thimerosal is as toxic as you would present.

    If I am comparing apples to oranges, I am comparing two foods which both (like all foods) contain some “known neurotoxin”… mercury. By your logic apples and oranges should be banned.

    Is the idea that mercury isn’t safe at any dose an official position of Generation Rescue? Many of us would love to hear GR’s official stance on that issue. I doubt that GR has the guts to actually make the statement one way or another.

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