A study published on Acta Neurobiologiae Experimentalis, Influence of pediatric vaccines on amygdala growth an opioid ligand binding in rhesus macaque infants: A pilot study, concludes that infant macaques displayed negative effects in amygdala function, and brain volume, after receiving the recommended pediatric vaccine regimen - circa 1990's.
Kris Turlejski, editor and chief of Acta Neurobiologiae Experimentalis, writes (Focus on Autism) that some known features in autism might contribute to "...exaggerated reaction to some factors that are harmless to other children". The "...poorly understood differences in genetic makeup of some children" (within the autism spectrum) is given emphasis.
Turlejski does indicate that "...the causal role of mercury should not make us stop investigating other possibilities, such as a lower tolerance of some children to a seemingly innocuous drug, for example acetaminophen". While mercury has been seemingly debunked in the media and in scientific circles, some continue to feel that it is a main factor contributing to the autism increase. Researchers continue to leave no stone unturned in order to evaluate the causes of, and treatments for autism. Most agree that many factors are contributing to autism, and many treatments usually become necessary.
The reported negative effects to the amygdala seem to indicate that secretions of hormones might be affected. Recently, some researchers have suggested the use of the hormone oxytocin for treatment in teaching social intelligence to those with Aspergers. Oxytocin is found to be in low levels for those within the autism spectrum population. Less reported is the fact that other hormones have also been found to have atypical presence in the autism spectrum population. Both Cortisol and Vassopressin are identified to be important for overall development, but possibly lacking in the earliest stages of development for the autism spectrum population. (See More Questions on Autism & Oxytocin)
The amygdala governs secretions of oxytocin and cortisol in order to regulate stress, as part of an overall hypothalamic hormone secretion process. The hypothalamus is the great and mighty oz behind the curtain of the pituitary gland. Is there a scenario where a portion of those within the autism spectrum have always had insufficient levels of both oxytocin and cortisol, and even vasopressin? How many hormones are affected in the autism spectrum population? It appears that the pilot study on pediatric vaccines which shows negative effects to the amygdala is justified in taking things to the next level by further research.
Little attention has been given to a group who questions the verified presence of Human Residual DNA in vaccinations; Dr. Theresa Deisher Ph.D. is leading research into the possibility that vaccinations have contributed to the increase in regressive autism. Her group is measuring residual human DNA in vaccines, predicting sites of DNA insertion via homologous recombination (HR) and measure insertion rates, modeling brain cell function effects, and epidemiologic study on children injected with vaccines containing the human DNA residuals. (See Immunizations, Human DNA Residuals & Autism) This project is in the early stages of inquiry.
Some in the autism community continue to have questions with regard to the officially reported increased rate of autism. There are questions about the accuracy of the statistics on autism. Especially given the changes in diagnostic criteria. Service data, utilized for reporting autism incidence is thought to be less then accurate. Some make reference to study that is available that points to no difference between vaccinated and non vaccinated children as far as autism prevalence.
Many more questions then answers continue to surface where autism is concerned. It is important to evaluate the possibilities and just keep trying.