False Foundations of Science: Can Vaccine Studies be Trusted?
By guest blogger Neil Z. Miller
Many “scientific” studies are literally nonsense. This is not a conspiracy theory. For example, the Journal of the American Medical Association [2005;294(2):218–28] published a paper showing that one-third of “highly cited original clinical research studies” were eventually contradicted by subsequent studies. The supposed effects of specific interventions either did not exist as the original studies concluded, or were exaggerated. It is not unusual for the “science” of today to degenerate into tomorrow’s fiction.
Vaccine studies are often funded by vaccine manufacturers. The lead authors of important studies that will be used to validate the safety or efficacy of a vaccine are often beholden to the manufacturer in some way. They may own stock in the company or are paid by the manufacturer to travel around the country promoting their vaccines. Lead authors may receive consultation fees, grants or other benefits from the drug maker. Although many people consider this unethical or corrupt, in the world of immunizations this is an acceptable practice, condoned by the CDC and FDA.
Sometimes study conclusions contradict core data in the study. It is not uncommon to read the abstract or summary of a major paper touting a vaccine’s apparent safety or benefits, only to find that upon examining the actual paper, including important details, the vaccine is shown to be dangerous and may have poor efficacy as well. For example, a landmark study published in Pediatrics [2003;112:1039-48] found that cumulative exposure to thimerosal-containing vaccines “resulted in a significant positive association with tics” and “increased risks of language delay.”
In other words, babies that received two or more vaccines containing mercury showed signs of neurological damage. This crucial information can be found in the body of the study. However, the authors concluded that “No consistent significant associations were found between thimerosal-containing vaccines and neurodevelopmental outcomes.” Sadly, the media is reluctant to publish anything that challenges the sacrosanct vaccine program. Newspaper articles about vaccines, and reviews of vaccine studies that are published, merely mimic the original spurious conclusions.
Often, important information is missing from a study. For example, the New England Journal of Medicine [2007;356:1915-27] published a paper on the HPV vaccine. It concluded that the vaccine “was highly effective” even though data in the study showed that vaccine efficacy was just 17% against high-grade cervical lesions. However, truly vital information that would help families to make informed vaccine decisions was never mentioned in the paper.
A secret FDA study [VRBPAC Meeting: May 18, 2006] had already found that the HPV vaccine may “enhance cervical disease” in girls who are sexually active prior to vaccination. In other words, the vaccine seems to work best in virgins and may actually increase a young woman’s chance of developing cervical cancer if she was previously exposed through sexual intercourse to HPV strains included in the vaccine.
In some instances, study results may be preordained. For example, when the vaccine-autism link became a public concern, vaccine proponents hastened to produce authentic-appearing studies that contradicted genuine data. Years ago, tobacco companies used this very same ploy. They financed numerous bogus studies ostensibly “proving” that cigarettes didn’t cause cancer. The real studies got lost in the muddle. Sadly, it’s all too easy to obfuscate truth and deceive the public.
At the infamous Simpsonwood conference held in Norcross, Georgia [June 2000], CDC and FDA authorities knew that mercury in vaccines was damaging children. They had irrefutable proof: a comprehensive study conducted by the CDC itself. However, instead of making this important information public, they hatched a plan to produce additional “studies” that denied such a link. In fact, vaccine proponents had the audacity to claim in some of these papers that mercury in vaccines not only doesn’t hurt children but that it actually benefits them! In the topsy-turvy world of overreaching vaccine authorities, the well-documented neurotoxic chemical mercury somehow makes children smarter and more functional, improving cognitive development and motor skills. Of course, this is nonsense. Numerous real studies document mercury’s destructive effect on brain development and behavior.
Another ploy used by vaccine proponents is to design studies comparing vaccinated people to other vaccinated people. Honest studies would compare them to an unvaccinated population. In addition, vaccine control groups rarely receive a true placebo, which should be a harmless substance. The scientific method has always been predicated upon removing all potentially confounding influences. However, many vaccine studies do not conform to this integral component of valid research. This is an important concept to grasp. For example, when a new vaccine is being tested for safety, one group may receive the new vaccine which contains an attenuated virus and an aluminum adjuvant while the “control” group receives an injection of aluminum as well (rather than water or another harmless substance). When vaccines are compared in this way, that is, to other substances that are capable of causing adverse reactions, the vaccine appears safer than it really is. Whenever this deceptive tactic is utilized, officially acknowledged adverse reactions to a vaccine may represent only a fraction of the true potential risks to the recipient.
It should also be noted that some clinical studies that are used to license vaccines exclude people in certain groups. For example, they may be too young, too old, pregnant, ill, or have other preexisting health ailments. However, once the vaccine is licensed, it may be recommended for people in these groups. Much like using false placebos, this unethical practice artificially inflates the vaccine’s safety profile and places more people at risk for adverse reactions.
Although some studies are mere propaganda, part of a larger disinformation campaign designed to promote a vaccine agenda, other studies link vaccines to debilitating and fatal diseases. For example, the British Medical Journal [1999;319:1133.] and Autoimmunity [2002;35(4):247-53] published data correlating the haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) vaccine to rising rates of type 1 diabetes. The hepatitis B vaccine has been linked to autoimmune and neurological disorders. Guillain-Barre syndrome — a serious paralytic disease — is a well-known adverse reaction to the flu vaccine. These are just a few of the many scientifically documented correlations between vaccines and incapacitating ailments that I will discuss in upcoming articles.