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Another Study Finds No Link Between MMR Vaccine and Autism
Date:2/4/2008

British researchers say their review is the largest of its kind

MONDAY, Feb. 4 (HealthDay News) -- Yet another study has found no evidence of a link between the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine and autism.

The British authors of this latest research said theirs was the third and largest study that has looked for a connection between the MMR vaccine and autism, and has failed to find one.

"I think it's fabulous that they have scientifically, God willing, put this issue to rest, although parents will not agree with it and those people who are proponents of measles as the cause [of autism] will find a problem with the paper," said Dr. Pauline A. Filipek, an associate professor of pediatrics and neurology at the University of California, Irvine.

The British researchers based their finding on a sample of 240 children -- 98 who had been diagnosed with autism, and two comparison groups: 52 children with special educational needs who were not autistic; and 90 children who had no developmental problems.

All the children had received the MMR vaccine, but not all had had both doses. The researchers checked blood samples from all the children to look for the presence of persistent measles infection or an abnormal immune response. An abnormal response would have been indicated by circulating measles virus or increased antibody levels.

The researchers found the blood analysis showed no difference in circulating measles virus or antibody levels among the children. The finding was the same whether the children had one or two doses of the MMR vaccine.

In addition, autistic children and those with special educational needs were less likely to have had the second dose of the MMR vaccine, which may mean that parents were concerned about their children receiving the second dose because of their developmental problems.

The findings are reported in the February issue of the Archives of
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