Vaccines, Autism, and Retraction

By Neuroskeptic | May 10, 2017 9:30 am

Arbitrary and unfair behavior by scientific journals risks damaging the public’s perception of science.

Two weeks ago, the Journal of Translational Science published a paper that reported a correlation between vaccination and autism in 666 children. On Monday, the paper disappeared from their website, with no explanation or retraction notice. Google’s cache still has the paper here. Retraction Watch has more details.

vaccine_mawson

In my view, this journal’s behavior is a perfect illustration of the fact that two wrongs don’t make a right.

Wrong #1 was publishing the Mawson et al. study, which is, in my opinion, fatally flawed. For example, all of the data came from a questionnaire completed by parents; the accuracy of these reports is unknown. Selection bias is also a serious concern. The study was advertised via the contact lists of various homeschooling organizations in four US states, and these adverts mentioned the “purpose and background” of the study. If parents who perceived vaccination as having harmed their child were more likely to respond to the advert, selection bias would result.

So, in my view, the results of this study are uninterpretable, and this paper should never have been published.

However, two wrongs don’t make a right.

Wrong #2 was the way Mawson et al.’s paper was deleted without an announcement or an explanation. That’s not how science works. There is something called the scholarly record, and we can’t try to airbrush things out of it. If journals want to retract a paper, they should explain their reasons for doing so by publishing a retraction notice, and ideally they should explain why they decided to publish the flawed paper in the first place.

Now, you might say that we shouldn’t expect any better from “Open Access Text“, the publishers of the Journal of Translational Science, because they’re an obscure, predatory outfit.

However, this isn’t the first time that the Mawson et al. paper has been published and then ‘disappeared’. Six months ago, the same scenario took place at a different journal, Frontiers in Public Health. While Frontiers has many critics (including me), they are certainly one of the largest academic publishers.

Frontiers-in-Public-Health-

This kind of behavior by journals damages the image of science. It plays straight into the hands of those who say that mainstream science isn’t about truth, but is merely the propaganda of powerful groups.

The public would be forgiven for asking questions about what happened at the Journal of Translational Science and Frontiers in Public Health. Why publish a paper and then suddenly delete it? Or, if there was a good reason for retracting the paper, why not at least explain what it was? Did the paper disappear because Big Pharma stepped in to suppress the truth about the dangers of vaccines…?

What really happened is that two journals published Mawson et al.’s paper because they have low standards of peer review, and then after being (rightly) criticized for this, they took the lazy way out and just deleted it, rather than stand by it (or at least explain their retraction properly). But it looks bad, and it looks bad for science as a whole, not just for these journals in particular. The power to publish science is also the power to drag science’s name through the mud.

ADVERTISEMENT
  • Mark Wax

    “Vaccines Are Unavoidably Unsafe”
    Don’t take my word for it. These are the words of Justice Scalia in Bruesewitz v. Wyeth, LLC in a Supreme Court decision in 2011. Unfortunately, due to the protections afforded the vaccine maker in the National Childhood Vaccine Act of 1986, the Court ruled against a vaccine injured plaintiff in the case. How?
    In the 1980s, children were having adverse reactions to the DTP (diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis) vaccine. Lots of lawsuits were being filed against docs and vaccine manufacturers. This caused the pharmaceutical industry to threaten pulling out of the vaccine market, and the alarm bells rang that the nation’s health and safety were at risk. Why were vaccine manufacturers getting ready to take their ball and go home? Because vaccines fall into a class of products considered “unavoidably unsafe.” I am not kidding you. This “unavoidable” word comes from the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act itself “products which, in the present state of human knowledge, are quite incapable of being made safe.”
    In 1986, Congress decided on a way to compensate folks for these avoidable injuries and death. It is called the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. From 2001 until 2011 the program has compensated about 2500 families a total of $2 billion. There has been close to $4 billion paid to date since inception. But, that represents only a small fraction of those who actually brought claims to the Vaccine Court. You see, there is a 36 month window to bring the claim. There is no “tolling” granted for minors, unlike all the Civil Courts in the U.S. Guess what? Neurological injuries may not present in infants for long after 36 months. Furthermore, who knows how many cases were never brought by attorneys on behalf of a vaccine injured child, because the statute of limitations ran out?
    Don’t let anyone tell you that vaccines don’t cause injury. They have, they do and they will do so in the future. For years, Thimerosal was used as a preservative in multi-dose vials. While still proclaiming it “safe”, vaccine makers “voluntarily” removed Thimerosal. It is still present in trace amounts and in flu vaccine. Thimerosal was never approved by the FDA, as the patents predated the establishment of said regulations. Worried?
    With nearly 6,000 cases pending the USCFC held the “Omnibus Autism Hearings.” They decided not to make “autism” a “table injury.” How convenient. Since there would never be enough money to pay for all who claim an “autism” injury. But, there have been many cases compensated for “encephalopathy” as a diagnosis with reference to autism. You can read it: http://digitalcommons.pace.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1681&context=pelr
    For the record, I am not “anti-vaccine.” Both of my children were fully vaccinated. Unfortunately for us, our son was neurologically disabled by vaccines. It is indisputable, yet the government and the vaccine makers still think that there is a “greater good” to be served. They may be right. But, let’s not fool ourselves. Vaccines can be made safer. It is about money.

  • Alokin

    Do such journals get to keep the money received from author(s) for publication if a paper is retracted?

    • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/neuroskeptic/ Neuroskeptic

      That’s a good question and the answer isn’t clear.

  • http://www.mazepath.com/uncleal/qz4.htm Uncle Al

    The kicker is not the vaccine, it is the aluminum gel-based adjuvant and the timing. Aluminium is neurotoxic. An infant’s immune system does not fully kick in for about a year. Massive early immune challenges may really whack saturate the as yet small immune system. Is much autism an autoimmune response in the growing brain?

    The plebian mob offers doormats – broad and shallow. Autists are intellectual ice pick prodigies. The challenge is to find at what they are each prodigious. Socialization is an excuse to sell beer, deodorant, cars, and real estate.

    • J Smith

      Except there is zero correlation with vaccines. None. So you may as well be hypnotizing as to the cause of correlation between odd and even numbers of letters and crime, when there is no such correlation.
      Not to mention that “autism” itself is increasing shown by the science not to be a disease, but a category of symptoms

      • Logic Contradict

        Zero correlation? Even though there may be a biologically plausible explanation for how aluminum can increase risk of microglial activation (aka inflammatory response) in the brain?

        The 2016 toxicology study by Crépeaux etc al “Non-linear dose-response of aluminium hydroxide adjuvant particles: Selective low dose neurotoxicity” shows some very interesting results.

        The study looked at varying aluminum adjuvant injections into mice (200mcg, 400mcg, and 800mcg) and found that with 400 and 800mcg injections, the immune system formed a granuloma around the aluminum adjuvant, which helps explain what we know as the aluminum depot effect, or the slow leeching of aluminium-antigen complexes from the site of injection over a period of months. The granulomas were formed as a result of a high inflammatory response that was used to “contain” the aluminum adjuvants.

        In contrast, the mice that got the 200mcg adjuvant injections did not form any granulomas, and were phagocytized by monocytes and were transported to the lymphatic system, of which we have recently learned that has a connection to the central nervous system.

        Mouse brain biopsies showed that the mice with the 200mcg injections showed the highest concentration of aluminum in the brain (5 times higher than controls), as well as the highest microglial density, indicating an immune/inflammatory response in the brain.

        Of course, there’s no way that brain inflammation could be associated to any neurological effect, right?

        • ANB2015

          Mouse studies? You’re going with mouse studies?

          • AutismDadd

            Its what Pro-vacs do

        • Mike Stevens

          “The study looked at varying aluminum adjuvant injections into mice (200mcg, 400mcg, and 800mcg)”

          Why are you citing a study which thinks a 20gm mouse is the same as a 10Kg infant?
          And why are you citing a study which suggests that the more aluminium that is given, the less the damage?
          Perhaps you are suggesting we should vaccinate our infants with more aluminium?

          • AutismDadd

            Do you want to use infants Mike?

        • AutismDadd

          High inflammatory response. Its what vaccines do, cause inflamation. Plus adjuvant elicits massive antibody response NOT to an antigen but to the adjuvant. Its thought this massive antibody response will result in a greater response to the antigen itself. Claims of a successful vaccine also are based on antibody response, but really, if its artificial and unrelated to the antigen, then its not sound science, but wishful thinking.

      • AutismDadd

        Correct that its not a disease, though many say it is. They are symptoms alright, but symptoms of what?

    • Mike Stevens

      A somewhat contradictory comment.
      If, as you say, the infant’s immune system does not kick in for about a year**, then it will not be able to over-react to any vaccine constituent by inducing an autoimmune reaction. In fact, autoimmune reactions would be non-existent, if what you said were true.

      ** In fact, it’s a little more complicated than that. Sweeping generalisations like yours are rather misleading.

    • AutismDadd

      aluminum is also , genotoxic mutogenic and an endocrine disruptor

      • ANB2017

        Then it’s a good thing that vaccines don’t use elemental aluminum!

        • AutismDadd

          aluminum hydroxide would you drink a mouthful?

          • ANB2017

            Aluminum hydroxide is used as an antacid. You’re not really up on this chemistry stuff, are you?

          • AutismDadd

            PMC2819810

          • AutismDadd

            So you hope constipation occurs?

  • Ethyl

    Vaccine science reminds me a lot of ABA science (Applied Behavioral Analysis). It’s the only game in town because it’s practitioners decided it would be abusive to set up a placebo controlled study. These parents were only trying to get someone to listen. The controversy is the denial that they have anything to say.

    • http://www.skepticalraptor.com/skepticalraptorblog.php Skeptical Raptor

      Anecdotes aren’t data. Post hoc fallacies aren’t data. But we have real data that vaccines are safe and effective. You just have useless anecdotes and post hoc fallacies.

      • Ethyl

        No parent is anti-vaccine, for the most part, unless their autistic child has had a serious reaction to a vaccine. Vaccines have unquestionably saved thousands of lives in the U.S.

        “About one child out of every 1,000 who get measles will develop
        encephalitis (swelling of the brain) that can lead to convulsions and
        can leave the child deaf or with intellectual disability.” https://www.cdc.gov/measles/about/complications.html

        It used to be 1 in 1000 would undergo encephalitis following vaccination. But in the case of vaccination, it is always a coincidence or a pre-existing condition. How do we know that the complication of measles isn’t a coincidence or a pre-existing condition? I’m just saying…

        • ANB2015

          Everybody dies following vaccination. It might take six months, a year, or 90 years, but what I wrote is still true. I’m just saying…

          • Ethyl

            So relax….everybody dies following measles, too.

          • ANB2017

            Not what I’m saying. AVs tell us that if A follows B, then B causes A, i.e., if a child is vaccinated and “later” dies, then the vaccine is the cause of death. That’s nonsense. The Gardisil deaths recorded in VAERS include deaths that happened six months or more after the vaccine.

          • AutismDadd

            So making up nonsense is how you invent evidence. Whose to say vaccine complications can’t kill within a six month period with a chronic reaction? Its plausible, just like many reactions that are denied by lurkers.

          • ANB2017

            Who’s to say that, outside of mathematics, it’s virtually impossible to prove a negative?

          • AutismDadd

            So? Where’s your proof a person can’t become ill and die 6 months later? As if THAT never happens.

          • sabelmouse

            it doesn’t fit the ” 2 weeks or it weren’t the vaccine” arbitrary line.

          • AutismDadd

            Yep the old arbitrary cut off date trick.

          • AutismDadd

            Gold Star for dumbest post of the day.

          • ANB2017

            Irony is the best.

          • AutismDadd

            And you want one too….granted

          • sabelmouse

            but you do believe that everybody died for luck of vaccines until recently.

          • ANB2017

            Lack of? Not everybody. Many have died of VPDs over the years, but not everyone. There are no vaccines for heart attacks, strokes, etc.

          • sabelmouse

            never mind.

          • AutismDadd

            You mean spraying…

        • Mike Stevens

          “It used to be 1 in 1000 would undergo encephalitis following vaccination.”

          Nope… more like one in a million, or even less.
          Post vaccination encephalitis was largely restricted to the old type of rabies vaccine, and the smallpox vaccine, neither of which are in current use. It may extremely rarely complicate cetain viral vaccinations, but the incidence is so low as to be able to even accurately quantify, and it is usually given as being less than one in a million shots.

          So I suppose you might have been right when you say “used to”, but you are certainly not correct today.

          • Ethyl

            Have you ever communicated with one parent whose child underwent an encephalopathy following a vaccination? I bet not…so rare…(cough, cough)/

          • Mike Stevens

            Never with one whose child was thoroughly medically investigated, and encephalopathy confirmed as being due to vaccine, rather than another reason, no.

        • VikingAPRNCNP

          It is actually closer to 1 in a million. IOM actually argues it is more on the order of 1 in 2.5 million will have a serious adverse event following MMR.

          Contrast that with a 25% hospitalization rate for measles. Or about 1 in 250 either having cognitive, sensory impairments or death as a result of measles.

          The safety data clearly favors vaccination.

          • Ethyl

            Severe adverse events like HHE used to be on in one thousand. Now they are one in 3500 with the ineffective DTaP. The WHO said as much in 2014. Not sure about new 2017 writeup on ~serious adverse events~.

          • Ethyl

            Also, numbers for encephalopathies/deaths have not changed for measles since the 60’s. But hospitalization has gone from 1 in 84 to 1 in 4. It is the same disease.

          • VikingAPRNCNP

            Since you willingly ignored the following

            Reply

            Avatar
            VikingAPRNCNP Ethyl
            17 hours ago
            It is actually closer to 1 in a million. IOM actually argues it is more on the order of 1 in 2.5 million will have a serious adverse event following MMR.

            Contrast that with a 25% hospitalization rate for measles. Or about 1 in 250 either having cognitive, sensory impairments or death as a result of measles.

            The safety data clearly favors vaccination.

          • Ethyl

            _Only_ if you consider anaphylaxis the only serious event. Look up adverse events on the WHO website, Skippy.

          • VikingAPRNCNP

            You are incapable of making an apples to apples comparison.

            Vaccination against measles dramatically reduces all cause mortality.

            See

            https://arstechnica.com/science/2015/05/measles-vaccine-cuts-risk-of-other-childhood-diseases/

          • AutismDadd

            The safety data that likely uses disclaimers and narrow definitions of what a vaccine can do to injure consumers.

          • Renè

            Only because neurological impairment is so hard to measure…

        • AutismDadd

          You’re supposed to believe what you are told to believe. If you question vaccine safety you are a member of Wakefield’s Anti-Vaccine Cult.

          • ANB2017

            If your reasons for questioning vaccine safety are baseless and poorly informed, you are a member.

          • AutismDadd

            Baseless? 19 countries have injury compensation programs. Have you ever read the descriptions of these deaths and injuries? Read the decisions from the SPECIAL MASTERS and see how baseless vaccine injury is.

          • ANB2017

            You don’t understand how the NVICP works, and it’s not my job to teach you.

          • AutismDadd

            The day you need to teach me will be the day they pull the plug.

          • AutismDadd

            The old kettle-pot routine

          • AutismDadd

            HMM the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. Reminds me of the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System. Yea how can we know how they work with such obscure names?

          • ANB2017

            OK, now I see why chemistry confuses you. Big words. Reminds me of when Jenny McCarthy said vaccines contain anti-freeze.

          • AutismDadd

            A chemical that antifreeze includes was used Mr Blind Faith Syndrome. That’s Jenny 1.. ANB 0

          • ANB2017

            You walked right into that one, Dadd. Anti-freeze contains ethylene glycol, which is poisonous. Some vaccines use polyethylene glycol, a polymer used in some personal care products (think skin creams and toothpaste). Jenny McCarthy was confused by sound-alike chemical names.
            Are you willing to adjust your belief that “a chemical that antifreeze includes” is found in vaccines, now that you know better?

          • AutismDadd
          • ANB2017

            I’m not in the least but surprised that you are citing whale.to.

          • AutismDadd

            Read it yet?

          • ANB2017

            Yes. Keep digging that hole, Dadd.

          • AutismDadd

            So I’m right You’re wrong. Next!

          • AutismDadd

            And you supplied the link…thanks

          • duplicat

            Anti-freeze contains ethylene glycol, which is poisonous.

            As you know, so-called ‘antifreeze’ can contain any number of alcohols which disrupt the hydrogen bonds and crystal lattice of ice. Ethylene glycol, methanol, and propylene glycol are often used.

            Propylene glycol has been used in vaccines, but it’s also used in dessicated coconut (E1521).

            By including PEG 300, propylene glycol, or glycerol in a hepatitis B vaccine, particle agglomeration, changes in the fluorescence emission spectrum–indicative of antigen tertiary structural changes–and losses of in vitro and in vivo indicators of potency were prevented following multiple exposures to -20 degrees C. The effect of propylene glycol was examined in more detail and revealed that even at concentrations too low to prevent freezing at -10 degrees C, -20 degrees C, and -80 degrees C, damage to the vaccine could be prevented.

            Development of a freeze-stable formulation for vaccines containing aluminum salt adjuvants.

            It’s not a big deal and it’s not worth mentioning. The focus should be on the bioaccumulative metals such as aluminum and mercury and anaphylaxis from the milk proteins present in the growth media.

      • Logic Contradict

        “But we have real data that vaccines are safe and effective”

        How do you come to that conclusion when the majority of vaccine safety studies typically look at one vaccine at a time (typically the RR or the OR calculated is per vaccine if more than one vaccine is studied). When emailing many of the corresponding authors of MMR/autism studies, all of them who took the time to reply confirmed with me that the population’s vaccine history is not taken into consideration, and not within scope of the study. From these studies, of which there are hundreds, we conclude that ALL vaccines are not associated to autism. This makes absolutely no sense from a scientific standpoint considering that about 0.7% of the population is completely unvaccinated and therefore, you’re likely comparing a vaccinated population vs another vaccinated population, with the only difference being that one group was vaccinated for MMR and the other was not.

        I have no qualms with efficacy (though I generally think that vaccine-induced immunity is not always as ideal as a natural response), but vaccine safety is complete pseudoscience.

        • ANB2015

          LC, you make a compelling case. When will you be publishing your data in a peer-reviewed science journal? What’s that, you’re not?

          • Logic Contradict

            Doesn’t help that people like you are extending and extrapolating the findings and conclusions of safety studies to suit a particular narrative. Are you going to actually reply with a proper rebuttal? You’re response isn’t helping your case at all.

          • ANB2015

            Why do you think vaccines cause autism? Because Mr. Wakefield said so?

          • AutismDadd

            He didn’t say that liar. He suggested a possible connection.

          • AutismDadd

            All the above

          • Di

            the amish do not get vaccinated…check how many have autism

          • ANB2017

            Depends on which Amish community you are talking about. The largest concentration of Anabaptists in the US is in Lancaster County, Pa, where most members are vaccinated. This is well documented.

          • AutismDadd

            Its the best you can hope for from these vaccine injury advocates. They talk in circles and when they run out of blah blah they go with the Wakefraud gambit.

          • AutismDadd

            Don’t hold your breath for that Proper Rebuttal.

          • AutismDadd

            Why not the Lancet? Pay them enough and you’re in.

          • AutismDadd

            Are you? Oh that’s right only the Shill Manual publishes your claptrap.

        • AutismDadd

          Skeptical Raptor is a known shill. Ignore him.

          • ANB2017

            And you are known as?

          • AutismDadd

            A vaccine Safety Advocate Extraordinaire

          • ᴠ ʌ ɴ

            Nah. More like a high functioning autistic – one of those adults who grew up in a different era and wasn’t identified as a kid.

            Or, as they used to be called, a “functional retαrd.”

          • AutismDadd

            What an ignorant shill you are. Probably masterbating at the same time.

          • ANB2017

            Advocate Sans Safety is more like it.

          • AutismDadd

            Hey that makes about as much sense as a rubber crutch.

        • VikingAPRNCNP
    • FallsAngel

      First of all, Ethyl, new vaccines are tested against placebo. An improved version of an existing vaccine will be tested against the existing vaccine. Have you ever heard of the Helsinki Accords? You cannot ethically deny a person an existing proven intervention.

      • Ethyl

        You can, however, be responsible for collateral damage in a war against disease.

        • FallsAngel

          Huh?

        • https://autisticagainstantivaxxers.wordpress.com/2017/04/07/submissions/ Derp Turtle

          If only we could anticipate this and set up some sort of special court with a low evidence bar and some sort of ruling that says you can still sue…..

      • AutismDadd

        A placebo like another vaccine. Complete false science.

    • ᴠ ʌ ɴ

      This might sound harsh. The parents who just need someone to listen, they should talk to a therapist.

      It’s unreasonable to expect researchers to continue wasting money, wasting manhours going back to the same debunked crap just because a handful of people can’t accept reality.

      • AutismDadd

        Gold Star for the dumbest pile of crap I’ve read today. See a therapist…ya u should

      • 655321

        Right, because an internet industry shill says so.

      • Ethyl

        No, I understand what you are saying. Some parents almost lose their minds. I never had one, so I’m okay. I don’t care if they do another study, epidemiologically. What I want…I mean, Jesus…the people making money off Autism get new labs based on some obscure idea they pull out of their preconceived notions. They just put $3m to study CRISPR in nearby Atlanta and some other damn mental disease (I kid, it was schizophrenia). I’m a little cynical about the efficacy of that treatment to any living Schizophrenic in their lifetime. But, it’s “cool”. That, also, is of questionable worth. Most of science is until somebody serendipitously guesses correctly. It’s messy, too. What I want is for some brave soul to look at the actual adverse events without an eye on diminishing them, but rather, understanding them.

        I don’t know the history of Type 1 Diabetes, but I can just see medico’s insisting the mother’s were starving their children to death out of hate. That’s what it seems like they are often want to do before they understand something. The parents aren’t as stupid as you think they are, and they are guessing, too. They aren’t making it up. And they love their children as much as you do yours. They initially thought the answer was genetic, and they raised millions of dollars for the science. You might be appreciative.

        • ᴠ ʌ ɴ

          CRISPR is cool because it’s a fast, accurate way of editing DNA. That’s great if you want to test a hypothesis. And as far as I know, juvenile diabetes is still linked to very specific genetic risk factors.

          I agree with you for the most part, but there’s a big difference between an educated guess and the ignorant, misinformed bleating I’ve seen from the “vaccines gave my baby the autisms” savants. Or epilepsy, or whatever.

          That’s where Mawson, and the crappy journals that publish this garbage do a real disservice, in my opinion. It just adds to the noise.

          • Ethyl

            I’m glad you replied. I couldn’t have been more wrong about diabetes. It was described 3500 years ago, and always seen as a medical disease. But autism is another story. I think neurological disorders tend that way because Psychology is such a subjective science, for the most part.

            What makes me sad about the pro-vaccine scientists is…I know so many parents of children with autism who have magnificent science backgrounds that make me jealous. Yet, they treat this particular subject obsessively, mostly by exposing the inaccuracies and human peccadilloes of “the enemy”. By God, if I had their skills and education, I wouldn’t be on the web poking people in the eye.

            One day I am going to know something of what happened to my son on that day immediately following the DTwP 23 years ago. He is fine…he’s LD, but he could have inherited that from his birth mother…in fact, I know he did. And environmentally, he didn’t stand a chance… But he’s very bright, and making his way in the world. If we knew why, we would know why pre-existing neurological disorders (for example, studies on epilepsy) make children more vulnerable to serious vaccine adverse events. AND, if we knew that, we might know more about neurological diseases and differences in toto. I won’t bug you anymore. Thanks for listening, ha!

          • https://autisticagainstantivaxxers.wordpress.com/2017/04/07/submissions/ Derp Turtle

            You need to establish whether or not pre-existing neurological disorders make children more vulnerable first.

            Do you know the difference between an adverse event and side effect/adverse reaction?

          • Ethyl

            Epilepsy increases the chances of an adverse event from six to thousands fold, depending on the type. We know that.

            I’ve never considered the difference between the two.

          • https://autisticagainstantivaxxers.wordpress.com/2017/04/07/submissions/ Derp Turtle

            You’re just asserting that, cite it.

            As for you have never considered the difference between the two…it’s the difference between three. And why on earth not? It’s the very basics of what you need if you’re going to claim, by default, to be smarter than the global scientific and medical consensus.

            If you have never even bothered to consider the difference between the three (not two) which is really basic stuff (Really, you could have read just the ‘inside cover’ of VAERs even and that would get you further than you are now!) – then why on earth should we privilege your opinion over expertise when you can’t be bothered to even consider the basics? I really really really hope you have a very good answer to that question.

            https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/9391344a71c9f8b790bc84869a0e646f18f2d2aed272b2516642463851233e63.jpg
            https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/fbfff6bdef04547faae43f0f44ae539c8dbb6651b241fcf1aaa3775e138f0893.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/b546789ba4acaa5ec6cbf9bb9ca3669923c72d6951331b8d5cf36bf72d7e2742.jpg

          • Ethyl

            Look up 2014 WHO information on adverse events of DTP among Dravet Syndrome Children if you are interested. It’s easy to find. While 1 in 4 children with Dravets (27%) are likely to have a serious adverse event….one in 200,000 children normally are likely to have that same event. That’s some pretty good odds there.

            I’m not smarter than anyone, maybe, other than you because I’m not going to bother to prove a point that should be common knowledge to someone who represents themselves as knowledgeable about this particular subject. Why would you not know how common adverse events were to a subset of children? It’s been years since science figured it out.

          • https://autisticagainstantivaxxers.wordpress.com/2017/04/07/submissions/ Derp Turtle

            “Look up 2014 WHO information on adverse events of DTP among Dravet Syndrome Children if you are interested. It’s easy to find.”

            Then you should have no problem citing it.

            ” While 1 in 4 children with Dravets (27%) are likely to have a serious adverse event….one in 200,000 children normally are likely to have that same event. ”

            What’s ‘likely’? Why can’t you do a better job of citing this 2014 WHO info? After all, it’s easy to find, right? And why would how likely any children are to react to DTP matter? We (developed countries) use DTaP/Tdap now.

            “That’s some pretty good odds there.”

            Maybe.

            “I’m not smarter than anyone, maybe, other than you”

            Too late to claim that now, your prior clams involve, ipso facto, claiming to be smarter than the entire global scientific and medical consensus

            “because I’m not going to bother to prove a point that should be common knowledge to someone who represents themselves as knowledgeable about this particular subject. ”

            I’m not representing myself as knowledgeable at all. Maybe two things: 1)I know more than you and 2)For the most part, I am simply forwarding on what the expert consensus is.

            Most of the rest of what I do is pointing out logical flaws and taking up challenges that involve ‘watch this’.

            Why do you think that fulfilling your responsibility to back up your claims that you made yourself with whatever evidence that you have constitutes proving a point to me, exactly?

            “Why would you not know how common adverse events were to a subset of children?”

            It’s irrelevant whether I know or not. It’s your claim and is therefore your burden of proof.

            ” It’s been years since science figured it out.”

            And yet you still can’t cite it.

      • AutismDadd

        Sounds like you have something to protect, say your employer?

      • AutismDadd

        Harsh is correct, but you enjoy attacking vaccine injury victims.

      • no1uknow1

        a handful? THOUSANDS. Don’t need someone to blame, just telling their facts as they lived them.
        I’ts unreasonable to expect families to continue wasting the long-term health and lives of their children just because an industry has successfully promulgated the lie that vaccination provides health.

        • Jonathan Graham

          Don’t need someone to blame, just telling their facts as they lived them.

          If they’re saying something about ‘wasting long term healh’ then they are absolutely not “just telling their facts”. They are in no position to observe an adverse event. So they can say “Person X got vaccinated and Y days later there was negative outcome Z” but that only implicates vaccines at the population level.

      • AutismDadd

        Sounds harsh and ignorant…as always

  • smut clyde

    Arbitrary and unfair behavior by scientific journals risks damaging the public’s perception of science.

    Think of how the tobacco industry could have used parasitical
    publishers, if the open-access option had existed a few decades ago!

    I’d say that the very existence of scammers like OMICS and OAText (and all the rest of the parasites) are damaging to perceptions of science.* The arbitrary disappearance of unwanted papers is just icing on top.

    * Not that they are the ultimate problem; by filling a niche in the eco-system, they are symptoms of deeper structural problems in science / academic funding.

    • Logic Contradict

      BBC had a panel to discuss scientific integrity on an audio show “What’s Wrong with Science?” talking about how the culture and incentive of scientists to publish favorable results and how journals selectively publish studies makes this idea of parasitic and predatory journals a moot point. In the Washington Examiner, probably about 6 days ago, posted an article called “Top editor: Medical Journals publish fake science, in Big Pharma’s pocket”, in which they talked about the integrity of scientists these days: “Yeah, it used to be that way,” said former New England Journal of Medicine Editor Dr. Marcia Angell. But, she added, “it began to change as the pharmaceutical industry became richer, more powerful, more influential, and began to take over the sponsorship of probably most clinical research now.”

      So while the lot of you who try to destroy publishers such as OAT or OMICS etc, the prestigious journals that you clamour to as solid irrefutable science isn’t as independent as you think either.

  • Dorit Reiss

    I agree. They shouldn’t have published such a bad paper; but once published, they at least need to explain why they are retracting it.

    • Realiτy022

      Why is it “bad”?

    • Kate K

      This is common in peer reviewed work. The amount of junk is increasing not decreasing. Metastudies are the worst.

  • Kjell Haugen

    Vaccines itself don’t cause autism, but vaccines (like pathogens) can trigger an autoimmune disease (like Pandemrix and narcolepsy), and there is a close relation between ASD and autoimmunity. ASD is most often not detected before school age, so parents are most likely unaware. And a doctor who examen a preschooler who have developed a chronic disease after being vaccinated, will therefore also “discover” the autism. An autoimmune disease however, most likely occur when a distinct pathogen, vaccine or also changes in hormone activity (puberty, pregnency), activates a distinct HLA variant of an intolerant immune defence.

    • http://www.skepticalraptor.com/skepticalraptorblog.php Skeptical Raptor

      Really? Evidence please.

    • Alina Lartseva

      Your comment is off topic. This discussion is not about whether vaccines cause or don’t cause autism. The point is that journals shouldn’t publish an article just because they believe in things it claims it has found, but because the article contains valid data that other researchers will be able to make use of. Likewise, a paper shouldn’t be retracted because a journal was bullied into it. If the editorial board believes they made a mistake they should admit to it and be transparent about it, not pretend that the whole thing never happened.

      • Kjell Haugen

        It is in fact you my dear, who is off topic, when only criticizing me for bringing to public attention, what I have reasons to believe is a possible cause to this particulare topic. I’m actually adding information to the particular case, while you are not;)

        • ANB2015

          You are adding misinformation and improbable speculation.
          Fixed it for ya.

  • smut clyde

    I belatedly remembered that Mawson is booked to be speaking at the AutismOne conference at the end of May. Mawson’s papers in OAText feature heavily in AutismOne publicity and press-releases:
    http://www.prweb.com/releases/2017/05/prweb14310010.htm
    https://www.facebook.com/CMSRI.ChildrensMedicalSafetyResearchInstitute/posts/1603844212978711
    https://www.facebook.com/greatergoodmovie/posts/1468418709887069

    That is to say, Mawson’s supporters and funding groups were under a lot of pressure to find a new home for his papers, in time to bill them in the AutismOne promotions as Bombshell Ground-Breaking Results of the Century. They didn’t have time to be fussy.

    • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/neuroskeptic/ Neuroskeptic

      Interesting. It seems to me that the mistake Mawson et al. made was to pick a publisher which was dodgy but not quite dodgy enough.

      The real worst-of-the-worst predatory outfits never retract anything.

      • smut clyde

        Cynical explanation: The cockwombles at OAText realised the importance of Mawson’s papers to the people who paid for them, and demanded more money to keep them on-line.

        • smut clyde

          Ransom now paid, papers are back on line.

      • Mike Stevens

        Should have gone to “Medical Hypotheses”.

  • Mike Robins

    dont know much about the vaccine autism link but i do have two friends who’s children had radical behavior changes shortly after getting vaccinated . I also have a former colleague who was in perfect health and needed vaccinations for a trip to Africa and she got very sick and died after her shots – very sad

    • AutismDadd

      We’re they told those were all coincidences?

      • Mike Robins

        dont buy it . happens to frequently to be a coincidence

        • AutismDadd

          Thousands of them? So vaccines cause coincidences?

          • Mike Robins

            evidently

          • AutismDadd

            Isn’t science grand?

        • ILoveJellybeans

          Unless you consider that over 90% of the almost four million babies born in America each year are vaccinated.
          .
          Unless you consider that out of those almost four million babies, 1.6% of them will be autistic
          .
          When we are talking big numbers like that, there is guaranteed to be a few thousand kids a year who happen to start showing autistic traits in a period of a few weeks after a vaccination, especially the MMR, as it is given at about the age autistic traits start to show.
          .
          There are thousands more that do not, but there are no websites collecting anecdotes from parents of autistic children who started showing noticeable autistic traits on the first Friday in June, or the day following a storm, or two months after going on a plane for the first time. That’s because there’s nobody collecting them, and there is no priming of the parents to make them connect such a link.
          .
          There are also many other parents claiming vaccines caused their child’s autism, where their child did not regress, but just developed at a different rate than the other kids. For those, priming them is as easy as them looking online for information about autism, coming across an antivax site, and then thinking about when their child was given the MMR vaccine, and seeing a connection, even if there was no noticeable moment where the kid’s behaviour changed, right afterwards, but rather they are looking back on it two years later and wondering if it fits.

        • https://autisticagainstantivaxxers.wordpress.com/2017/04/07/submissions/ Derp Turtle
  • smut clyde
  • MC

    It was never retracted from Frontiers in the first place. Read how skeptics “scared” the publishers away from the research before even having read the methodology. http://www.ghostshipmedia.com/2017/05/11/the-big-taboo/

    • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/neuroskeptic/ Neuroskeptic

      It was retracted from Frontiers, in the same way that it was retracted from the Journal of Translational Science. Granted the retraction process was shoddy in both cases: there was never a formal retraction notice or any justification given. But then again, both of these are shoddy journals.

      As for the methodology, it was quite evident from the abstract available at Frontiers that the study suffered from a small sample size and a high risk of recall and selection bias.

    • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/neuroskeptic/ Neuroskeptic

      I note that comments are disabled on that post, but it does not link to my post, despite my post being critical of both Mawson et al. and the way it was retracted. This post is therefore a inconvenient counterexample to the idea that “skeptics” are all gloating over the retraction of the paper.

      • MC

        Neuroskeptic — you cannot say that a paper that was never published in Frontiers was retracted. As Leonid Schneider tweeted, he got rid of it before publication during consideration with one tweet. And as you note with JTS, it “disappeared” without a word. It was NOT retracted. There have never been allegations of scientific misconduct — just complaints about opinion bias, but many public health studies rely on parent’s recall of doctor diagnoses and surgical interventions — it did not ask for opinion. And accepting a paper and then deciding against it based on tweets is a violation of the Committee on Publication Ethics code of professional conduct. As it should be.

  • http://www.paulgibbons.net/ Paul Gibbons

    Yes, I heard it wasn’t retracted from Frontiers, it was accepted into the review process and rejected. I agree with all you say, about transparency and public record and about the pseduo-science, but I don’t think journals need to highlight rejected papers. (Or, maybe they should – and why – that would add transparency – but it isn’t the way things are done now.)

    • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/neuroskeptic/ Neuroskeptic

      That’s not quite right. The abstract was published in Frontiers in Public Health. It would be unheard of for a journal to publish abstracts just because they had entered into the review process. Whereas it is not unheard for journals to publish the abstracts of accepted papers, before publishing the full text.

    • smut clyde

      it was accepted into the review process and rejected

      You may have heard wrong. The Frontiers journal heralded the paper on their website as “in press” and assigned it a DOI unique-identifier link.
      The Frontiers website described it as
      Accepted: 21 Nov 2016.

      http://web.archive.org/web/20161127044553/http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fpubh.2016.00270/abstract

      Let me quote that again:
      Accepted: 21 Nov 2016.

      The subsequent decision by the management to over-rule the editors and downgrade the manuscript’s status as “provisionally accepted”, then to “not accepted”, is not really convincing.

  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/ PK

    It got wakefielded. It’s what happens to science that questions the dogma of vaccination. I’m guessing the researchers will lose their jobs, licences and reputations soon too.

    • Brian

      Your unconditional defense of child-abusing scam artists is very appreciated by child-abusing scam artists.

      • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/ PK

        Odd. As you are the only person to comment, I’m assuming you admit to being a child abusing scam artist. You should turn yourself in to the authorities.

    • smut clyde

      Licenses? What licenses? Are you under the impression that the authors are medical practitioners?

  • Pingback: Vaccines, Autism, and Retraction – Neuroskeptic – autisticagainstantivaxxers()

  • AutismDadd

    I’ll take functional. What’s your excuse?

  • disqus_DXjn9NvYMd

    Why would the pharmaceutical companies make immunizations if
    they could be easily sued? Government has to protector the manufactures. The government knows immunizations can cause great harm even death, and there is no way to predict who will be affected and they cannot afford to compensate all the victims. Would parents give their infants immunizations knowing they could be harmed? Would a government lie to protect the most citizens while allowing a few to be sacrificed?

  • Gina

    I just googled a of sites, from health, science, entertainment to even senior singles . I saw this site and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading this article.

NEW ON DISCOVER
OPEN
CITIZEN SCIENCE
ADVERTISEMENT

Neuroskeptic

No brain. No gain.

About Neuroskeptic

Neuroskeptic is a British neuroscientist who takes a skeptical look at his own field, and beyond. His blog offers a look at the latest developments in neuroscience, psychiatry and psychology through a critical lens.

ADVERTISEMENT

See More

@Neuro_Skeptic on Twitter

ADVERTISEMENT

Discover's Newsletter

Sign up to get the latest science news delivered weekly right to your inbox!

Collapse bottom bar
+