Autism and Mercury Poisoning

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So, there is a new study which shows that mercury-based vaccines can cause brain changes found in autism. It supports the data found in the following compelling charts which juxtapose mercury toxicity symptoms versus the symptoms of autism:

Autism: a Novel Form of Mercury Poisoning
Autism Research Institute

Table I: Summary Comparison of Traits of Autism & Mercury Poisoning (Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) references in bold; Mercury poisoning (HgP) references in italics)

Psychiatric Disturbances
Social deficits, shyness, social withdrawal (1,2,130,131; 21,31,45,53,132)
Repetitive, perseverative, stereotypic behaviors; obsessive-compulsive tendencies (1,2,43,48,133; 20,33-35,132)
Depression/depressive traits, mood swings, flat affect; impaired face recognition (14,15,17,103, 134,135; 19,21,24,26,31)
Anxiety; schizoid tendencies; irrational fears (2,15,16; 21,27,29,31)
Irritability, aggression, temper tantrums (12,13,43; 18,21,22,25)
Lacks eye contact; impaired visual fixation (HgP)/ problems in joint attention (ASD) (3,36,136,137; 18,19,34)
Speech and Language Deficits
Loss of speech, delayed language, failure to develop speech (1-3,138,139; 11,23,24,27,30,37)
Dysarthria; articulation problems (3; 21,25,27,39)
Speech comprehension deficits (3,4,140; 9,25,34,38)
Verbalizing and word retrieval problems (HgP); echolalia, word use and pragmatic errors (ASD) (1,3,36; 21,27,70)
Sensory Abnormalities
Abnormal sensation in mouth and extremities (2,49; 25,28,34,39)
Sound sensitivity; mild to profound hearing loss (2,47,48; 19,23-25,39,40)
Abnormal touch sensations; touch aversion (2,49; 23,24,45,53)
Over-sensitivity to light; blurred vision (2,50,51; 18,23,31,34,45)
Motor Disorders
Flapping, myoclonal jerks, choreiform movements, circling, rocking, toe walking, unusual postures (2,3,43,44; 11,19,27,30,31,34,39)
Deficits in eye-hand coordination; limb apraxia; intention tremors (HgP)/problems with intentional movement or imitation (ASD) (2,3,36,181; 25,29,32,38,70,87)
Abnormal gait and posture, clumsiness and incoordination; difficulties sitting, lying, crawling, and walking; problem on one side of body (4,41,42,123; 18,25,31,34,39,45)
Cognitive Impairments
Borderline intelligence, mental retardation – some cases reversible (2,3,151,152; 19,25,31,39,70)
Poor concentration, attention, response inhibition (HgP)/shifting attention (ASD) (4,36,153; 21,25,31,38,141)
Uneven performance on IQ subtests; verbal IQ higher than performance IQ (3,4,36; 31,38)
Poor short term, verbal, and auditory memory (36,140; 21,29,31,35,38,87,141)
Poor visual and perceptual motor skills; impairment in simple reaction time (HgP)/ lower performance on timed tests (ASD) (4,140,181; 21,29,142)
Deficits in understanding abstract ideas & symbolism; degeneration of higher mental powers (HgP)/sequencing, planning & organizing (ASD); difficulty carrying out complex commands (3,4,36,153; 9,18,37,57,142)
Unusual Behaviors
Self injurious behavior, e.g. head banging (3,154; 11,18,53)
ADHD traits (2,36,155; 35,70)
Agitation, unprovoked crying, grimacing, staring spells 3,154; 11,23,37,88)
Sleep difficulties (2,156,157; 11,22,31)
Physical Disturbances
Hyper- or hypotonia; abnormal reflexes; decreased muscle strength, especially upper body; incontinence; problems chewing, swallowing (3,42,145,181; 19,27,31,32,39)
Rashes, dermatitis, eczema, itching (107,146; 22,26,143)
Diarrhea; abdominal pain/discomfort, constipation, “colitis” (107,147-149; 18,23,26,27,31,32)
Anorexia; nausea (HgP)/vomiting (ASD); poor appetite (HgP)/restricted diet (ASD) (2,123; 18,22)
Lesions of ileum and colon; increased gut permeability (147,150; 57,144)

Table II: Summary Comparison of Biological Abnormalities in Autism & Mercury Exposure

Mercury Exposure Autism
Binds -SH groups; blocks sulfate transporter in intestines, kidneys (40,93) Low sulfate levels (91,92)
Reduces glutathione availability; inhibits enzymes of glutathione metabolism; glutathione needed in neurons, cells, and liver to detoxify heavy metals; reduces glutathione peroxidase and reductase (97,100,161,162) Low levels of glutathione; decreased ability of liver to detoxify xenobiotics; abnormal glutathione peroxidase activity in erythrocytes (91,94,95)
Disrupts purine and pyrimidine metabolism (10,97,158,159) Purine and pyrimidine metabolism errors lead to autistic features (2,101,102)
Disrupts mitochondrial activities, especially in brain (160,163,164) Mitochondrial dysfunction, especially in brain (76,172)
Immune System
Sensitive individuals more likely to have allergies, asthma, autoimmune-like symptoms, especially rheumatoid-like ones (8,11,18,24,28,31,111,113) More likely to have allergies and asthma; familial presence of autoimmune diseases, especially rheumatoid arthritis; IgA deficiencies (103,106-109,115)
Can produce an immune response in CNS; causes brain/MBP autoantibodies (18,111,165) On-going immune response in CNS; brain/MBP autoantibodies present (104,105,109,110)
Causes overproduction of Th2 subset; kills/inhibits lymphocytes, T-cells, and monocytes; decreases NK T-cell activity; induces or suppresses IFNg & IL-2 (100,112,117-120,166) Skewed immune-cell subset in the Th2 direction; decreased responses to T-cell mitogens; reduced NK T-cell function; increased IFNg & IL-12 (103,108,114-116,173,174)
CNS Structure
Selectively targets brain areas unable to detoxify or reduce Hg-induced oxidative stress (40,56,161) Specific areas of brain pathology; many functions spared (36)
Accummulates in amygdala, hippocampus, basal ganglia, cerebral cortex; damages Purkinje and granule cells in cerebellum; brain stem defects in some cases (10,34,40,70-73) Pathology in amygdala, hippocampus, basal ganglia, cerebral cortex; damage to Purkinje and granule cells in cerebellum; brain stem defects in some cases (36,60-69)
Causes abnormal neuronal cytoarchitecture; disrupts neuronal migration, microtubules, and cell division; reduces NCAMs (10,28,57-59,161) Neuronal disorganization; increased neuronal cell replication, increased glial cells; depressed expression of NCAMs (4,54,55)
Progressive microcephaly (24) Progressive microcephaly and macrocephaly (175)
Prevents presynaptic serotonin release and inhibits serotonin transport; causes calcium disruptions (78,79,163,167,168) Decreased serotonin synthesis in children; abnormal calcium metabolism (76,77,103,179)
Alters dopamine systems; peroxidine deficiency in rats resembles mercurialism in humans (8,80) Either high or low dopamine levels; positive response to peroxidine, which lowers dopamine levels (2,177,178)
Elevates epinephrine and norepinephrine levels by blocking enzyme that degrades epinephrine (81,160) Elevated norepinephrine and epinephrine (2)
Elevates glutamate (21,171) Elevated glutamate and aspartate (82,176)
Leads to cortical acetylcholine deficiency; increases muscarinic receptor density in hippocampus and cerebellum (57,170) Cortical acetylcholine deficiency; reduced muscarinic receptor binding in hippocampus (83)
Causes demyelinating neuropathy (22,169) Demyelination in brain (105)
Causes abnormal EEGs, epileptiform activity, variable patterns, e.g., subtle, low amplitude seizure activities (27,31,34,86-89) Abnormal EEGs, epileptiform activity, variable patterns, including subtle, low amplitude seizure activities (2,4,84,85)
Causes abnormal vestibular nystagmus responses; loss of sense of position in space (9,19,34,70) Abnormal vestibular nystagmus responses; loss of sense of position in space (27,180)
Results in autonomic disturbance: excessive sweating, poor circulation, elevated heart rate (11,18,31,45) Autonomic disturbance: unusual sweating, poor circulation, elevated heart rate (17,180)


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