Mercury and Autism

Key points regarding toxins and autism:

  • The autism epidemic that began in the late 1980’s is likely due primarily to toxins adversely affecting fetus and infants during development
  • Mercury is likely a major contributor to this toxin-induced autism, whether the source of the mercury is from vaccines or environmental mercury exposure
  • Other toxins, whether from vaccines or environmental exposure, can also contribute to toxin-induced autism.
  • When mercury is present in the body either from recent acute exposure or long-term chronic exposure, it can exponentially increase the adverse affect of other toxins 10-fold to 100-fold in a process known as “synergistic toxicity.”
  • Autism is closely correlated with a lessened ability to excrete toxins.

There is much evidence that autism is triggered by a toxic overload which adversely affects organs throughout the body, including the brain. Research indicates that several toxins and biological agents could be contributing to a toxic overload causing autism, including but not limited to:

  • ethylmercury in vaccines
  • methylmercury and other forms of mercury in the environment
  • organic pesticides
  • bisphenol A in plastics
  • aluminum hydroxide (used in vaccines to stimulate an immune response)
  • certain viruses

SafeMinds has focused much of its efforts on mercury due to it likely having the largest contribution to autism amongst the toxins. Research shows that mercury is strongly linked to immune system dysfunction and most of the other symptoms associated with autism. Mercury has also been shown to have synergistic toxicity with many other toxins (It is important to understand synergistic toxicity -- click here for further details: Synergistic Toxicity). SafeMinds funds research to gain more knowledge on the role of mercury poisoning in autism so that treatments can be improved and preventative steps taken. Much of the human exposure to mercury can be avoided or reduced, thus SafeMinds advocates for minimizing mercury exposure wherever possible.

SafeMinds has also focused on the link between autism and vaccines. There is substantial evidence that in a substantial portion of autism cases, vaccines are the final trigger to toxic overload. SafeMinds has long maintained that the high-mercury vaccines has contributed to autism, and there is growing evidence that the low-mercury and no-mercury vaccines may also contribute to a synergistic toxicity leading to autism.

For more information on mercury and autism, please continue reading the
"Environmental Mercury", "Key Lessons Learned", "Mercury Poisoning and
Autism", "Vaccines and Autism", and "FAQ" sub-sections of this website.

For more information on the link between autism and other toxins (non-vaccine-related), please see the references below:

Toxic Metals

Adams, J et al. 2009. The Severity of Autism Is Associated with Toxic Metal Body Burden and Red Blood Cell Glutathione Levels.

Higher exposure to mercury and lead, especially in combination, prior to age 1 correlates with a higher incidence of autism diagnoses:

Schweikert, C et al. 2009. Analysis of Autism Prevalence and Neurotoxins Using Combinatorial Fusion and Association Rule Mining.

Our Stolen Future

The Collaborative on Health and the Environment

This is the 2005 groundbreaking study that found 200 industrial chemicals and pollutants in umbilical cord blood from 10 newborn babies, including the Teflon chemical PFOA, flame retardants, solvents, pesticides, PCBs, dioxin, and mercury. The umbilical cord carries nutrition, but it also is unwittingly used to carry hundreds of pollutants from mother to baby. What are the effects of all those chemicals together on growth and brain development?

Center for Health, Environment and Justice

Breast Cancer Fund

Electromagnetic Radiation
Study Finds Link Between Wi-Fi and Autism