Gardasil Follow-up: The Evil Toxins

My last post on Gardasil has garnered quite a bit of interest so I thought I would follow it up with a look at some of the other claims about this vaccine that are also geared towards warning women away from it. The focus of this entry is, as the title implies, the ingredients of the vaccine and their alleged toxicity. Now I would first like to make clear that I am not trying to argue that these compounds are not at all toxic, that would be an untenable position almost anything is toxic at the right (or wrong) dose. This brings up the heart of the issue though, the dose is key here, the claims by detractors of the vaccine imply that the amounts of the chemicals in the vaccine are above the toxic threshold. I, along with the medical community so I feel I’m in good company, consider this to be an incorrect conclusion.

I’d also like to mention that the backlash against Gardasil is not a grass roots uprising, railing against a single toxic vaccine. It is simply an outgrowth of a larger anti-vaccine movement.

The following claims are not parodies they are actual claims made by anti-vaccinationists, if any have been misrepresented then that is my error. In addition not all of the claims are spurious (some are, see yeast protein) but I have found no evidence that such hysteria is warranted.

The Ingredient:
amorphous aluminum hydroxyphosphate sulfate

Dose per shot:
225 μg

The Facts:
Used as an adjuvant this ingredient actually makes the vaccine more potent by enhancing the body’s immune response to the vaccine. As such it has an 80 year track record of safety in vaccines. Also, dietary sources of aluminium are not insignificant, estimated at 1.6-13 mg per day or 7-60 times that in the vaccine, even though bioavailability of chemicals is affected by the method of introduction to the body (oral vs injection) it’s hard to see how this miniscule amount would make any difference.

The Claim:
Animal and human studies show aluminum can cause nerve cell death;
Vaccine aluminum adjuvants can allow aluminum to enter the brain;
Causes inflammation at the injection site leading to chronic joint, muscle pain and fatigue.

The Ingredient:
yeast protein

The Facts:
The HPV antigen proteins in the vaccine are made by engineering yeast to express them, during purification not all of the yeast cell proteins can be removed so residual yeast protein is left in the final vaccine product.
The vaccine does not contain live virus and viruses do not eat, so feel free to laugh at the claim made below.

The Claim:
Creates synthetic free glutamic acid (MSG) in the processing;
Feeds the live virus.

The Ingredient:
sodium chloride

Dose per shot:
9.56 mg

The Facts:
Not much to say, it’s salt, not likely to kill you quickly.

The Claim:
Ok, they don’t make any claims for this one, but given that the LD50 for Sodium Chloride is 3 g/kg in humans whereas for borate (below) it is 5.3 g/kg (ie more required to have toxic effect), they might have been better off to do so.

The Ingredient:
L-histidine

Dose per shot:
0.78 mg

The Facts:
Used in the vaccine as a buffer. As an amino acid we consume histidine in our food and also make it in our bodies for use in our own proteins. It is also an essential amino acid in children, in other words they cannot make it on their own and it must be present in their diet. The World Health Organisation estimated the daily adult requirement for histadine to be 8-12 mg.

The Claim:
Precursor to allergic reactions;
It stimulates the inflammatory response of skin and mucous membranes;
Responsible for forming metal bearing enzymes (such as the toxic metal storage protein metallothionein);
Metals such as zinc, copper, and nickel are transported by binding to L-histidine and the binding is essential for excretion of excess heavy metals.

The Ingredient:
polysorbate 80

Dose per shot:
50 μg

The Facts:
This is a surfactant and is used to ensure that the vaccine ingredients are evenly distributed in solution. This compound does have deleterious effects on rats but at doses many times greater than in the vaccine in a body up to several hundred times smaller than a human.

The Claim:
Injected into prepubescent rats caused a rapid growth of reproductive organs, but growth was abnormal and the rats were sterile;
When used intravenously with vitamins it has been known to cause anaphylactic shock. Carcinogenic, mutagenic.

The Ingredient:
sodium borate

Dose per shot:
35 μg

The Facts:
Used to balance the pH. As mentioned above this ingredient is less toxic than table salt, the 35 μg in the vaccine if given to a 50kg individual equals a 0.7 μg/kg dose, this isn’t even close to a dose high enough to cause even a minor problem.

The Claim:
This is the main ingredient in Boric Acid;
Powdered Boric Acid is often used to kill cockroaches;
Dangerous poison;
Symptoms of Sodium Borate poisoning are very similar to many of the side effects being reported with the Gardasil vaccine.

Putting this list together I found many sites making substantially similar claims for the ingredients, I finally picked this one as representative so you can go and observe the claims in their natural habitat as it were.

I also found the following sites helpful for follow-up information, in no particular order:

http://www.gardasil.com

http://www.merck.com/product/usa/pi_circulars/g/gardasil/gardasil_ppi.pdf

http://sci.waikato.ac.nz/bioblog/2009/04/lets-clarify-something-here.shtml

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2008/08/woo_and_antivaccinationism_in_mainstream.php

It’s possible that I will write a follow-up to this follow-up covering the economic attack on Gardasil that has been made. This aspect is quite a bit outside my expertise so might be a long time coming, still it’s an interesting perspective.

Used with kind permission.

PG

Author: Leslie Carol Botha

Author, publisher, radio talk show host and internationally recognized expert on women's hormone cycles. Social/political activist on Gardasil the HPV vaccine for adolescent girls. Co-author of "Understanding Your Mood, Mind and Hormone Cycle." Honorary advisory board member for the Foundation for the Study of Cycles and member of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research.