Yet again I'm annoyed at the mainstream news for pussyfooting around dispensing the usual 'autism is linked to genes' spiel.
Yes, yes, linked to genes: but only at the level of a sensitivity to something environmental. Sometimes they grudgingly admit there are environmental factors, but only as 'triggers'. The image given is of autism as a genetically loaded gun just waiting to fire.
I'm currently working in schools, and in some schools, every class of about 25-30 students has at least 2 diagnosed spectrum children and a handful of others I'd be tempted to want to run by a good paediatrician. Something's badly rotten in the state of Denmark.
Actually, after reading the full report of the most famous study that supposedly exonerated Thimerosal, I'm not just speaking figuratively... Denmark was the site of the study. Every criticism I've read of the report seemed borne out when I looked at the source material: they changed the diagnostic parameters to include a wider range of patients, thus inflating the numbers. At the end of the study they were able to say that despite Thimerosal being withdrawn, the autism rate had climbed.
So next time you read that the Danish study was 'badly flawed', rest assured, they're not exaggerating.
I'll try to dig out the links I browsed...