Immunologists: Vaccines with Aluminum Adjuvants Risk Food AllergiesUpdated: January 25, 2018 Vaccination
Five respected immunologists from the University of Virginia presented their troubling findings at a recent seminar for the World Allergy Organization.
Alice E. W. Hoyt, MD , Medicine, Division of Asthma, Allergy, and Immunology, University of Virginia
The scientists theorized that aluminum adjuvants in routine childhood immunizations could be contributing to increasing rates of allergies to common foods such as peanuts, egg, milk, wheat, soy, almond, fish, and seafood. Aluminum is already known to contribute to the stimulation of IgE (immunoglobulin E) in mice. What is the impact of aluminum adjuvants in vaccines on IgE antibody production in children?
Aluminum Adjuvants in Childhood Vaccines
The aluminum adjuvants in vaccines are included to increase the body’s immune response to enhance effectiveness. However, aluminum (Al) is also a known neurotoxin with the potential to stimulate undesirable autoimmune effects. For example, routine pet vaccinations containing these adjuvants trigger severe autoimmune disorders in dogs (1).
In addition, female rats exposed to aluminum adjuvants experience autoimmune induced behavior abnormalities such as depression as well as worrisome inflammatory manifestations (2).
The revised 2016 CDC recommended childhood vaccination schedule includes 74 doses by age 17 with 53 injections and 3 oral doses of rotavirus.
Could the widespread use of aluminum adjuvants in this rapidly expanding schedule be stimulating the immune system of vaccinated children to produce immunoglobulin E (IgE) antibodies to common foods?
The team of UVA scientists reported on two specific cases of children sensitized to food allergens whose serum IgE levels increased after immunizations. The children were not related and presented to a Pediatric Allergy Clinic.
Case 1: At 5 months of age, an otherwise healthy girl tasted peanut butter and developed hives and facial swelling within 20 minutes
The girl’s total and food allergen-specific IgE values were measured by ImmunoCAP 250 at ages 8 months, 12 months, and 12.7 months old. Total IgE and food allergen-specific IgE values decreased from 8-12 months of age, a time interval during which she received no vaccines.
At age 8 months, total IgE and food allergen-specific Ige values (in IU/mL) were as follows:
- Total IgE: 61.4
- Peanut IgE: 13.6
- Almond IgE: 4.04
- Milk IgE: 3.84
- Egg IgE: 2.01
- Soy IgE: 1.6
- Wheat IgE: 0.98
At age 12 months, immediately before vaccination, total IgE and food allergen-specific Ige values (in IU/mL) were as follows:
- Total IgE: 44.1
- Peanut IgE: 11.2
- Almond IgE: 1.54
- Milk IgE: 2.0
- Egg IgE: 1.71
- Soy IgE: 1.62
- Wheat IgE: 2.20
At age 12.7 months, three weeks after she received four vaccines (Prevnar13, hepatitis A, MMR, and Varicella, two of which contained aluminum), all of her IgE levels had significantly increased.
- Total IgE after vaccination: 75.6
- Peanut IgE after vaccination: 16.5
- Almond IgE after vaccination: 2.18
- Milk IgE after vaccination: 5.06
- Egg IgE after vaccination: 3.4
- Soy IgE after vaccination: 3.64
- Wheat IgE after vaccination: 3.75
Case 2: At 8 months old, an otherwise healthy boy developed diffuse hives after eating scrambled egg
The boy’s total and food allergen-specific IgE values were measured at ages 12 months and 13 months using ImmunoCAP 1000.
At age 12 months, one week before vaccination, the boy’s total IgE and food allergen-specific Ige values (in IU/mL) were as follows:
- Total IgE: 21.1
- Egg IgE: 1.16
- Peanut IgE: <0.1
- Milk IgE: <0.1
- Soy IgE: <0.1
- Wheat IgE: <0.1
- Cod IgE: <0.1
- Shrimp IgE: <0.1
At age 13 months, three weeks after the boy received three vaccines (Prevnar13, MMR, and Varicella, one of which contained aluminum), his total IgE and egg specific IgE levels notably increased. IgE specific levels for the other six foods increased as well, though only slightly.
- Total IgE after vaccination: 23.8
- Egg IgE after vaccination: 4.02
- Peanut IgE after vaccination: <0.35
- Milk IgE after vaccination: <0.35
- Soy IgE after vaccination: <0.35
- Wheat IgE after vaccination: <0.35
- Cod IgE after vaccination: <0.35
- Shrimp IgE after vaccination: <0.35
Aluminum Containing Vaccines Cause Food Allergen Antibody Production
The team of scientists concluded that the results of this small scale study raise the hypothesis that aluminum containing vaccines may increase, at least temporarily, the production of allergen-specific IgE levels (3). The vaccines that currently contain aluminum adjuvants include:
- Hepatitis B (given immediately at birth)
- Hepatitis A
- DPT (some versions)
- Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)
- Human papillomavirus (Gardasil, Cervarix)
- Pneumococcus (Prevnar)
Do the allergenic effects triggered by aluminum containing vaccines continue to persist indefinitely? Given that children are vaccinated repeatedly throughout childhood with aluminum adjuvant containing vaccines, the likelihood seems strong.
While some parents who desire to raise autoimmune disease free children may wish to wait until further study is done, other parents may decide that the smoking gun that exists is sufficient. Children grow up too fast as it is. Vaccine refusal, in essence, making a call based on a “where there is smoke, there is fire” philosophy to protect your children from a lifetime of autoimmune woes could well be the smartest call of all.
Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist