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With New Vaccine Study, 'a Truth Has Emerged' on Autism

Namely, as other studies have noted, that MMR vaccine isn't linked to the developmental disorder
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 4, 2019 7:00 PM CST
Updated Mar 5, 2019 1:03 AM CST
In this Jan. 29, 2015, file photo, a pediatrician holds a dose of the MMR vaccine at his practice in Northridge, Calif.   (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

(Newser) – The Centers for Disease Control and many others have long noted there's no proven link between vaccines and autism, and now the agency has yet another study to back those claims. CNN reports that the research published in the Annals of Internal Medicine journal looked to see if there was a link between the measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine, following more than 650,000 kids in Denmark, born between 1999 and 2010, from the age of 1 through the end of 2013. About 95% of the subjects received the vaccine, and 6,500 or so were diagnosed with autism. Scientists found, however, that "MMR vaccination does not increase the risk for autism [and] does not trigger autism in susceptible children." In fact, children in the study who received the MMR vaccine were 7% less likely to develop autism than kids who didn't get their shots, NBC News notes.

Per CNN, the whole autism-vaccines connection began with a since-discredited 1998 study by Andrew Wakefield, flawed research that was latched onto by concerned parents, including celebrities and politicians. Meanwhile, an uptick in measles outbreaks in the US is now being tied to anti-vaxxers who continue to believe the debunked study. What was notable about this research was the inclusion of children said to be at risk for autism, says Dr. Paul Offit, a Children's Hospital of Philadelphia vaccination expert who wasn't involved with the study. "At this point, you've had 17 previous studies done in seven countries, three different continents, involving hundreds of thousands of children," Offit tells CNN. "I think it's fair to say a truth has emerged." (The wife of a White House official recently came under fire for her anti-vaccination posts online.)

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