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Toxicokinetics of mercury after long-term repeated exposure to thimerosal-containing vaccine – Source: Toxicological Sciences, Jan 20, 2011

  [ 21 votes ]   [ 2 Comments ]
By L Barregard, et al. • • January 26, 2011

The preservative thimerosal contains ethyl mercury (EtHg). Concerns over possible toxicity have reemerged recently, due to its presence in (swine and other) flu vaccines.

We examined the potential accumulation of mercury in adults given repeated injections of a thimerosal-preserved vaccine for many years.

Fifteen female patients were recruited from an outpatient clinic running a clinical trial with repeated injections (1 mL every 3-4 weeks) of a staphylococcus toxoid vaccine containing 0.01% thimerosal, to treat chronic fatigue syndrome. Fifteen untreated female patients with the same diagnoses served as controls. Blood samples were taken before injecting the vaccine, one day later, about two weeks later, and just before the next injection.

In the fifteen controls, samples were taken twice. Blood was analyzed for total mercury and EtHg. The toxicokinetics were assessed for each patient separately, as well as with a population-based pharmacokinetic model. Total mercury in blood increased on day one in all treated patients (median 0.33, range 0.17-1.3 ?g/L), as did EtHg (median 0.14 ?g/L, range 0.06-0.43 ?g/L). After a few weeks levels were back to normal and similar to those in controls.

Levels of methyl mercury (MeHg; from fish consumption) were much higher than those of EtHg.

After exclusion of an outlier, the mean half-life in a population-based model was 5.6 (95% confidence interval 4.8-6.3) days.

The results indicate that mercury from thimerosal is not accumulated in blood in adults. This is in accordance with:

• Short half-lives

• And rapid metabolism of EtHg to inorganic mercury.

Source: Toxicological Sciences, Jan 20, 2011. Barregard L, Rekic D, Horvat M, Elmberg L, Lundh T, Zachrisson O. Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Sweden. [E-mail:;]

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Article Comments Post a Comment

Flawed conclusion
Posted by: cyano6
Apr 24, 2011
It is not surprising that the levels of etHg mercury in the blood are low. Why? Because it ultimately accumulates in muscle, bone and nervous tissue, thus reducing levels within the circulatory system. Mercury is the second most toxic substance on the planet, second only to plutonium, and it is still acceptable to utilize it as a preservative for vaccines? It is a potent neurotoxin and carcinogen. It's impact on the collective health with regard to the cancer it has caused and the diminishing of our collective intelligence quotient as a nation can NEVER be measured. Protect yourselves and more importantly, your children. If you are going to receive a thimerosol vaccine, it is highly advisable to research chelating supplements to absorb and eliminate the mercury and other heavy metals that are ingested in our food and water supply.
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Collegues are mistaken
Posted by: HeliR
Mar 16, 2012
I am rather surprised by the conclusion of the collegues regarding fate of organified mercury as well as their conclusion that "much higher methyl-Hg" is normal.
As someone having been personally affected by CFS coming into effect several weeks after having been removed 9 amalgam fillings with striking improvement after detoxification (only some years later because I didnt get a proper diagnosis) I think their conclusion is preliminary and without complete awareness of the high amount of studies on the topic "intoxification x mercury".
The "high amount of methyl-Hg" needs further clarification: amalgam-fillings constantly leak anorganic Hg into the system which is organified by gut microflora and constantly reiterated in some enterohepatic cycle until finally deposited in high-fat brain and fat-tissue. As scientist and physician I would rather clarify the status of mercury-load in these women and note the prompt improvements.
Proper textbook literature in this contex is PhD Martin Pall "explaining unexplained illnesses".
For german speaking readers I may refer to my own review of the study: Helmut Retzek
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