Misc. links

Back to the grind this week unfortunately, but the swine flu/H1N1 story is still developing and still fascinating. The most recent numbers show 286 confirmed US cases in 36 states.

There are many remaining questions on the evolution and epidemiology of this strain--and many pundits sure they know what's going to happen next. Mike takes one of them down--Wendy Orent, who I've blogged about previously. Orent is claiming (based on a black/white version of the evolution of virulence in pathogens) that the spread of this strain is attenuating the virus, and that future outbreaks will be milder. Mike nicely explains why that may, or may not, happen--and why it's folly to predict with certainty either scenario at this point.

Unrelated to influenza, an editor at the Guardian is angry at anti-vaxers, after his young daughter (11 months old, too young for the MMR vaccine) has developed measles:

According to the Health ÂProtection Agency there were 1,348 cases of Âmeasles last year, compared with 56 in 1998. In 2006 a 14-year-old boy died of Âmeasles - the first fatal case for 14 years. The reduction in herd immunity is Âcausing unnecessary suffering.

The decision by many of my neighbours not to vaccinate their children is on a par with the drunk who decides to get into his car to drive home. It is a personally reckless action that also endangers the lives of everyone else on the road. Society should view the MMR refuseniks with the same degree of scorn.

Finally, the winners of the 2009 Alliance for Science Essay contest have been announced (H/T Panda's Thumb and Evil Monkey).

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I read the full Guardian article and some of the comments. Several of these comments noted that if MMR vaccine was unbundled then you probably would get greater coverage of our population. It could be argued that would not be the case but at least there would be a choice for parents. All of my children have the MMR vaccine. However, they do not have all of the 'recommended/required' vaccines. We don't because a family member had a reaction to a vaccine that nearly killed them, and did injure them for life, and has killed others individuals. It is not a genetic problem, it is due to having an immune system that is very stong and reacts strongly to the vaccine. It is not that we are 'drunks' and is not on par with 'driving under the influence of alcohol'. Also, if my child is injured, I have 10 years on average to a settlement from the government under the childhood vaccine injury act, and only get $250,000 if my child dies. I can not sue the manufacturer or anyone else, only the government under this act. Under the republicans, they tried to repeal that you could even sue anyone.

We don't because a family member had a reaction to a vaccine that nearly killed them, and did injure them for life, and has killed others individuals. It is not a genetic problem, it is due to having an immune system that is very stong and reacts strongly to the vaccine.

You're going to have to explain how a physiological reaction of a family member who had said response has altered your behavior if
1) you don't believe it's genetic.
2) believe that immune responses are not governed by hereditary components.

I cannot understand your reasoning, otherwise.

What do you think about Dr. Sears Alternative Vaccine Schedule?
http://www.askdrsears.com/thevaccinebook/labels/Alternative%20Vaccine%2…

We have had measles going around here in the DC area -- in fact, that was our big news prior to Swine Flu. One of the cases had not been vaccinated, traveled to India for a few weeks, then came back here and spread those measles all over :( Do any countries REQUIRE vaccinations for entry / exit? I cannot fathom traveling to another country w/o checking to see what vaccinations I might need, but, then again, my husband is in the military, so we have good healthcare.

My pet peeve is people who SWEAR the flu shot gives them the flu and refuse to believe any facts to the contrary. I used to bribe my employees every year to get flu shots w/ some success.

Jason, Thank You for your response: "You're going to have to explain how a physiological reaction of a family member who had said response has altered your behavior if
1) you don't believe it's genetic.
2) believe that immune responses are not governed by hereditary components.

I cannot understand your reasoning, otherwise."

I agree with both your points.

My reasoning is that it is not a genetic "problem", not that it is not due to genetics, because:

1)Some vaccines are for 'teen and adult lifestyle' diseases that are rarely seen in children.
2)But for these vaccines some children are injured and killed who almost never would contract the disease.

With mass vaccination, this strong immune response would, in part, be killed off in the population.

Also, there are no tests for a possible negative reaction to vaccines. Why? Is it cost effective to just kill off people with "problem" genes to the goal of mass vaccination?

To clairfy with Jason's first point, I do beleive it is genetic, just that it is not a genetic "problem".

Also, if we kill off people in mass due to race, or religion it is genocide, but if we kill off or maim people with genes that react to vaccines it is what? Race is determined by genes as well as your reaction to vaccines. Some vaccines have been show to specifically maim, kill particlar races and genders within races.

Some vaccines have been show to specifically maim, kill particlar races and genders within races.

And those vaccines would be which ones, exactly?

Hepatitis B vaccine has been shown to injure, kill people with strong immune responses, particularly women of northern european ancestry.

Do you have a reference for that?

http://www.neurology.org/cgi/content/abstract/53/8/1711

Article notes, women in general have MS several times more than men and that women from northern latitudes, probably due to ethnicity of women in these latitudes, have higher incidences than women from souther latitudes. France stopped Hep B vaccine in 1998 for school age children due to view that Hep B vaccine was causing MS. Studies were 'inconclusive' or others said there was not a link to vaccine. So there appears possibly to be an auto immune disposition to MS for a particular ethnicity and gender (female) that is triggered by a vaccine on a 'lifestyle' disease, Hepatitis B? So young females of a particular ethnicity are possibly being injured or killed before reproductive age for a disease they probably won't get until they are at reproductive age. That is one way to reduce an ethnicity's population over time. Kill off/maim the females before they can reproduce.

Another article from a Harvard study notes G-Beret disease link to Hep B vaccine with women of northern lattitude ancestry particularly affected the most. I am working on getting this cite. From around the year 2000.

You are so right, Eric. Spot on! How foolish of me not to realise that Hepatitis B vaccination was a nefarious conspiracy to kill off young white women before they get to reproductive age by giving them the usually non-fatal disease of middle age called multiple sclerosis.

What is "G-Beret" disease? Something Frenchmen get from believing everything they read on the internet?

Your ridiculous assertions are unbelievable to most readers even when you get the names of the diseases correct. If you start talking about things you cannot even spell then everyone can see you are an idiot.

We have had measles going around here in the DC area -- in fact, that was our big news prior to Swine Flu. One of the cases had not been vaccinated, traveled to India for a few weeks, then came back here and spread those measles all over :( Do any countries REQUIRE vaccinations for entry / exit?

Another article from a Harvard study notes G-Beret disease link to Hep B vaccine with women of northern lattitude ancestry particularly affected the most. I am working on getting this cite. From around the year 2000.