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United Nations Urged to Ban Mercury in Vaccines

SILVER SPRING, Md., April 6, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- CoMeD – While the United Nations (UN) actively questions the use of vaccines containing a neurotoxic mercury compound, the Coalition for Mercury-Free Drugs (CoMeD), a Maryland-based, non-profit organization, is urging the UN to ban it.

In mid-March, governments were asked to send the UN secretariat "information on mercury use in pharmaceuticals, especially vaccines."  The request was made in preparation for the United Nations Environmental Programme's third intergovernmental negotiating committee (INC3) on mercury, scheduled for this fall.  The purpose of the INC meetings is to develop a legally-binding, global mercury treaty by 2013.

CoMeD was pleased by this call for information because CoMeD provided scientific data about health hazards caused by mercury in vaccines to various international delegates at the second INC meeting in January in Chiba, Japan.

Since then, CoMeD has publicized new studies proving that the mercury in vaccines and dental amalgams, or "silver" fillings, is associated with neurological diseases such as autism in children and Alzheimer's disease in adults.

One study from the University of Brazil recognizes vaccines as essential but suggests that the use of Thimerosal, a mercury-based compound sometimes used as a vaccine preservative, be reconsidered.  Recent articles in Folia Neuropathologica, Middle East Current Psychiatry, the Journal of Immunotoxicology, the Journal of Occupational Medicine and Toxicology, and the Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology confirm the toxicity of the dose of mercury in Thimerosal-preserved vaccines.

In humans, Thimerosal is recognized to cause cancer, genetic mutations and birth defects.  In 1999, the U.S. Public Health Service and American Academy of Pediatrics jointly called for its removal from U.S. vaccines "as soon as possible."  Thimerosal has since been replaced by the much less toxic compounds, like 2-phenoxyethanol (2-PE), in preserved vaccines licensed for U.S. use by the FDA since 2001.  Though most doses contain Thimerosal, flu shots are now strongly recommended for pregnant women and children.

A CoMeD analysis has shown that replacing Thimerosal, a compound that is 50% bioaccumulative mercury by weight, with 2-phenoxyphenol in all vaccines, including the flu shot, is both economical and safer.  Additionally, CoMeD has sued the FDA for its failure to comply with the law and enforce preservative safety regulations.

Furthermore, vaccine-safety proponents are encouraging those who are responsible for international vaccination campaigns to heed the overwhelming evidence that human health risks are linked to mercury and other vaccine ingredients.  

Rev. Lisa K. Sykes, President of CoMeD, is warning groups including the Global Alliance for Vaccines, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to stop spreading mercury to other continents: "While Thimerosal has been removed from most vaccines in the United States, pharmaceutical companies and the World Health Organization continue to dump mercury-laced vaccines on developing countries.  No ethic can justify providing prosperous nations with mercury-free vaccines while endangering children in poor nations by exposing them to this neurotoxin."

SOURCE Coalition for Mercury-Free Drugs (CoMeD)
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