MS Study Questions Safety of Bacteria Commonly Used as Vaccine Adjuvant

MS Study Questions Safety of Bacteria Commonly Used as Vaccine Adjuvant

In a recent study, a team of researchers argued that, contrary to what has been proposed, subclinical Bordetella pertussis colonization is an important cause of multiple sclerosis (MS). The study, “The potential role of subclinical Bordetella Pertussis colonization in the etiology of multiple sclerosis,” was published in the journal Immunobiology.

The bacteria Bordetella pertussis and its secreted toxin have been extensively used within the last 50 years as a potent adjuvant, or substance added to a vaccine to increase the body’s immune response to it. When co-administered with neural antigens, the bacteria induces neuropathology in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis, the key animal model for human MS.

Researchers now hypothesize that subclinical Bordetella pertussis nasopharyngeal colonization is not innocuous to hosts, and can actually behave as a human neuropathogen causing MS.

The team reviewed three epidemiological cases that offer evidence supporting their hypothesis. The first is the major MS-related epidemiologic phenomenon of the last century — the MS epidemic in the Faroe Islands during and immediately after World War II. According to the article, authors who studied the outbreak noted that “MS is the rare late outcome of a specific but unknown infectious disease of adolescence and young adulthood.”

The second evidence comes from epidemiological studies establishing that the world’s MS burden exhibits an equatorial gradient, so that the further a person moves from the equator, the greater is that person’s MS risk. Researchers propose that the heterogeneous global risks for MS parallel heterogeneous global Bordetella pertussis vaccination rates.

Finally, the third epidemiological case is U.S. government data indicating increased MS mortality among elementary and secondary school teachers (when compared with all other professional occupations), suggesting an increased risk for symptomatic and asymptomatic Bordetella pertussis infection.

Researchers concluded that these epidemiological cases indeed suggest there is a substantial probable cause for subclinical Bordetella pertussis colonization as a cause of MS. Since Bordetella pertussis is a frequent colonizer of the human nasopharynx, particularly in highly vaccinated populations, the team suggested that studies are warranted to investigate further MS development as a result of Bordetella pertussis colonization.


  1. Hannah says:

    The article title is misleading- the authors do not at any point question vaccine safety. Pertussis isn’t used in human vaccines as an adjuvant although it is used experimentally. The original paper presents epidemiological evidence supporting a link between sub-clinical infection with the bacteria and MS. The paper suggests that sub-clinical infection is more common amongst those who have been immunised against whooping cough. In other words although the vaccine prevents severe infection it doesn’t necessarily give rise to total immunity and people can still carry the bacteria but don’t develop overt disease. They suggest that the prolonged presence of these bugs may in part be responsible for MS. But not the vaccine itself or any other vaccine for that matter. The evidence isn’t complete but if they are right then 1) we need a better vaccine, one that drives out the bacteria completely and 2) maybe it gives us some new avenues to look at for the treatment of MS.

    • Benedetta says:

      Hannah; Mine was not reacting to the natural disease, just to the DPT shot each and every time – and that ended up being a lot of times, with ending results that are just horrible.
      It is used as an adjuvant in the Hep B too. That turned out cause inflammation unspecified in one of my family for about three years before it calmed down.
      HEY! Wait! The HEP B right on the insert says it is possible to develop MS. WHO KNEW!

      • Hannah says:

        Im am very sorry for the problems that you and your family have suffered. Sadly no medical intervention going to be 100% safe. However my comment solely relates to the fact that the article doesn’t represent the paper that they are discussing accurately. I simply summarised the original paper. Regarding my statement that pertussis is not used as an adjuvant, as far as I can see pertussis is included in vaccines that are intended to protect against pertussis some of which are combination vaccines which protect against multiple diseases. These all tend to contain Aluminium as the adjuvant.

    • LKam says:

      Please do prove that vaccines work. The vaccine companies claim their products work because the increased level of antibodies means our kids are protected. Several researches show that children with antibody count three times higher then the normal still contract the diseas they’ve being vaccinated for. In the mean time the same vaccines make the kids sick by injecting heavy metals, stray viruses MSG and egg embryos.

      • Hannah says:

        Small pox – eradicated
        Polio – nearly there
        Seasonal Flu – last year the strains chosen for the flu vaccine turned out to be the wrong ones and the overall winter death rate here in the uk was reported to have increased – which suggests that when its been got right that vaccination program works.
        Everyone’s immune system is different and simple antibody level may not give the whole picture for that individual.

      • okguy says:

        Hi LKam!

        As Hanna is unlikely to ever address the point you make, let, let me see if I can put a point that will shed some light on the matter being touched on here.

        OK, the vaccine industry appears to assert that if a person has sufficient levels of antibodies to a particular pathogen, they are there fore immune to that pathogen. That is what they are asserting.

        OK, some people – such as yourself – are questioning that assertion. Perhaps Hanna would find a person that was HIV positive (i.e. had lots of HIV antibodies) and have a rigorous and thorough exchange of bodily fluids (several times to prove the point).

        Clearly, this same logic applies to ebola and several other feared diseases.

        • Hannah says:

          Well ‘okguy’ as you have chosen to reduce the conversation to this level I choose to bow out. You clearly have no interest in the science just in your own ego.
          To everyone else question what you are told- by EVERYONE. But especially those who’s sole recourse is the sexualisation of an inherently non-sexual topic

        • Tammy Martino, DPM, RPh says:

          I’m a pharmacist and podiatrist. I was mandated to get the hepatitis b vaccine in podiatry school. I had vision loss left eye within 3 weeks of initial shot and bilateral thigh numbness within 4 months. At that time the PI read that this vaccine “does not cause multiple sclerosis”. It certainly does. Pharmacologically speaking, vaccines provide temporary, if any, immunity. It is never acceptable to sacrifice a healthy neurological system for temporary, if any, immunity against a germ that one may never encounter. Hepatitis b vaccine should be recalled immediately for contamination with DNA Polymerase. Every human being who undergoes vaccine procedure should be monitored for at least 5 years to better identify patterns of injury and those most at risk. Experts claim that the VAERS system of vaccine injury reporting is as low as 3%. We should be able to sue vaccine manufacturers for injury. The vaccine compensation program in the USA is a joke. Few get compensated. Most, like me, get nothing, especially because it can take a team of doctors more than 36 months to identify autoimmune syndrome induced by adjuvants/vaccines. There is no justice for vaccine injury victims. We’re not worthy. Genocide.

    • Redpill1 says:

      The Pertussis Vaccine do not work and are responsible for the current outbreaks:
      Study titled: “Acellular Pertussis vaccines protect against disease but fail to prevent infection and transmission in a nonhuman primate model,” used infant baboons to test the hypothesis that “current acellular pertussis vaccines fail to prevent colonization and transmission” of B. Pertussis. http://www.pnas (dot) org/content/111/2/787.

      Lead author Tod Merkel did comment to the New York Times that when exposed to B. Pertussis after recently getting vaccinated, you could be an asymptomatic carrier and infect others, saying:
      “When you’re newly vaccinated, you are an asymptomatic carrier, which is good for you, but not for the population.” According to Tod Merkel of the FDA, it has now become clear that the vaccine does almost nothing to prevent the spread of whooping cough. Although it does seem to prevent about 80 percent of people from showing symptoms of the disease, it does not prevent them from catching it or spreading it.

      Study: Whooping cough resurgence due to vaccinated people not knowing they’re infectious? clinicalnews(dot)org/2015/06/24/study-whooping-cough-resurgence-due-to-vaccinated-people-not-knowing-theyre-infectious/comment-page-1/. From study/article:
      “a detailed epidemiological model of whooping cough transmission to conclude that acellular vaccines may well have contributed to — even exacerbated — the recent pertussis outbreak by allowing infected individuals without symptoms to unknowingly spread pertussis multiple times in their lifetimes.

      ‘There could be millions of people out there with just a minor cough or no cough spreading this potentially fatal disease without knowing it,’ said Althouse. ‘The public health community should act now to better assess the true burden of pertussis infection.’ What’s worse, their model shows that if the disease can be spread through vaccinated, asymptomatic individuals essentially undetected.

      Acellular Pertussis vaccine is not capable of preventing colonization and transmission of B. Pertussis. The FDA has issued a warning regarding this crucial finding (http://www(dot)

    • Tim says:

      When I first read what u wrote I was angry for some reason
      But when I read how u finished I was happy that a person as intelligent and informed as u still had hope for a solution or That it may at least be possible for this to be a cause of it. ❤

    • Jessica says:

      The government passed The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act in 1986 to protect the pharmaceutical companies from being sued.The only way to possibly be compensated for vaccine injury is to file a claim with the Vaccine Court, and it’s very difficult to win. The government is working on Healthy People 2020 which is aimed at setting up a mandatory vaccine schedule for adults and start to track who is up to date on vaccinations. There are also over 200 vaccines in the works to add to the schedule. The best thing you can do is fight against the government trying to take away our human rights to choose what goes into our bodies.

  2. Jamie Noonan says:

    The conflict of interest section of this study paper is certainly interesting. Authors are 2 researchers with equity interests and employed by a company ILiAD Biotechnologies making a vaccine that’s targeting Bordatella pertussis. Makes it surely easier to view in the appropriate light.

    • Tony says:

      So are you saying they are making a vaccine to counteract what a couple of other vaccines may be causing? I guess that would make sense….to the vaccine companies….all of which have major conflicts of interest in their studies, too. And people actually trust them?

  3. Carol wills says:

    Does anyone with ms experience scalp irritation and pain it I’d literally doing my head in the constant urge to pull strands of my hair out it just happens some days I just have to lather the scalp with coconut oil it may not seem a big deal to doctors but have more pain and heaviness throughout body also my emonotions are dreadful. Am taking cymbalta and lyrica for pain but seem to be getting worse with fatigue and don’t want to deal with life anymore as no one understands in my family have put on weight which is not Google am trying to exercise and help myself but feel I am being invaded in my body have tried antihistamines also and half a Valium for anxiety have been to see psychologist but think I need new medication for anxiety so I an get on with the day without feeling exhausted and wanting to cry.

    • Elaine Mesker says:

      Antihistamines are suppose to exacerbate MS attacks. I haven’t taken them for 25 years. I was given a shot of an antihistamine for a supposed allergic reaction to an antibiotic. After that I was in so much pain I wanted to die!!! Turned out to be MS.

      • okguy says:

        Hanna, you were asked to prove that vaccines work. You didn’t. Instead you went on to assert that both polio and smallpox had been eradicated … and by implication the cause of that eradication being vaccination … yet you have yet to cite any proof whatsoever that vaccination was the cause of the eradication of smallpox etc. There are many folk that would assert that the reason why London children aren’t afflicted with polio is because of the work of Basiljet and not the work of Jenner. I stand ready to be convinced by your evidence. Please show your proof rather than assert your belief as if it was proven fact. As it stands, vaccinations seems more like a religion than a science.

    • A Adams says:

      Perhaps it’s not from MS, but psoriasis? I have psoriatic arthritis going on two years now, and have taken Stelara for five months now. It worked very well. My skin and scalp cleared up too. My MS had been in remission for @ 20 years. I’ve had mild to moderate skin problems since I was a teen.

  4. Allie says:

    I’m confused. I’ve never seen anything referring to bordetella pertussis being used as an adjuvant. Did the author mean “antigen?” There are no supporting citations that show us that it’s ever been used as an adjuvant, nor that it is “commonly used in vaccines,” or at least, commonly used in vaccines other than DTaP and TDaP, which are meant to target pertussis anyway. Those vaccines contain huge amounts of aluminum adjuvant, which is certainly linked with autoimmune reaction.

    • Sybil says:

      I had the same question! I read the actual study and it seems they are saying that the bordetella pertussis worked as an adjuvant with other antigens in the vaccine and can thus lead to MS. The author of this article states that the B. pertussis is specifically used as the adjuvant to increase response to the pertussis vaccine. Am I reading that correctly? As stated in the study “with B. pertussis toxin is a potent adjuvant that, when co-administered with neural antigens, induces neuropathology in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis, the principle animal model of multiple sclerosis.”

  5. Linda says:

    I had 5 mercury containing RhoGAM shots to compensate for my RH negative blood type and suffered numbness, weakness, loss of hearing and balance after each shot. In 1993 I had my first and only flu shot and had the same symptoms as the RhoGAM shots, but worse. 3 weeks later I was diagnosed with MS. The doctor made me have a second MRI with contrast, another metal which caused me more issues. I am homozygous for MTHFR and can’t excrete metals. Mercury is still used in the manufacturing process of vaccines and aluminum adjuvant.

  6. Connie Crowley says:

    I would be interested to know if this a common adjuvant used in the Hep B vaccine. Other countries don’t give this vaccine to young children and have warranted further testing to its association with MS.

  7. Zoey O'Toole says:

    It’s a very interesting study. The toxin is used as an adjuvant to CREATE MS in laboratory animals. The reason why the paper has to do with “vaccine safety” isn’t that it is an “adjuvant” in the DTaP vaccine; it is that “subclinical Bordetella pertussis colonization of the nasopharynx persists in highly vaccinated populations,” and the authors are connecting that “subclinicial Bordetella pertussis colonization” to the onset of MS. Subclinical colonization is a vaccination effect. Colonization in non-vaccinated individuals results in acute clinical presentation of the disease. The interesting thing to me was that I thought subclinical colonization was an artifact of the DTaP and that is was a newish phenomenon, but the authors are saying that the DTP had the same problem. And, yes, the authors’ conflict of interest information is an interesting factor.

    • Kayla Wildman says:

      The 2012 FDA research in baboons showed that both whole cell pertussis vaccination and acellular pertussis vaccination allowed colonization by pertussis. The difference was that whole cell-vaccinated baboons cleared the infection in 3 weeks; the acellular-vaccinated baboons cleared the infection in 6 weeks. Transmission to unvaccinated cagemates was tested and proven for acellular-vaccinated baboons. I don’t know whether transmission to unvaccinated cagemates was tested for whole cell-vaccinated baboons.

  8. Ricky Barnes says:

    We talk a lot about pertussis in my film 50 Cents a dose. It’s playing on vimeo on demand at ( The persistent use of the DTaP, as clinically sited, fosters the growth of B Parapertussis, a new strain of the bug. So now we’re having outbreaks in excess of pre-vaccine levels, and in fully vaccinated communities, because of antigenic shift (mutation). Also, the adverse events from the this vaccine, as listed by the Institute of Medicine are legion; but of course, we’re not privvy to that information.

  9. Please, if you battle MS or any other chronic or critical illness, share EVERYWHERE…

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  10. says:

    Thanks for finally writing about >MS Study Questions Safety of Bacteria Commonly Used as
    Vaccine Adjuvant – Multiple Sclerosis News Today <Liked it!

  11. Margaret Gatty says:

    “Please do prove that vaccines work.”
    During the first year of the Civil War there were 1,676 reported cases of measles and 551 deaths in the Union Army alone. By War’s end, in the Union Army over 67,000 had measles and more than 4,000 died of the disease. In 1912-1922, an average of 6,000 measles-related deaths were reported each year. In the decade before 1963 when a vaccine became available, an estimated 3 to 4 million people in the United States were infected each year and a estimated 400 to 500 of those infected died (drop from turn of the century is due to better supportive medical care), 48,000 were hospitalized, and 4,000 suffered encephalitis (swelling of the brain) from measles (which, I venture to say, is not really good for folks with MS). Following introduction of the vaccine in 1963 reported cases of measles in the US fell from hundreds of thousands to tens of thousands per year. Increasing uptake of the vaccine following outbreaks in 1971 and 1977 brought this down to thousands of cases per year in the 1980s. Over the period 1989-1991, measles outbreaks sickened a reported 55,622 Americans, killing 123 — not surprisingly, many outbreaks were centered in areas where immunization levels were low. The efficacy of a renewed push for vaccination and the addition of a recommended booster shot was reflected in the fact that fewer than 200 cases were reported each year from 1997 to 2013. Unfortunately, unvaccinated people have contributed significantly to the recent rise in measles cases in this country. In 2014, the United States experienced a record number of measles cases, with 667 cases from 27 states reported. Last summer, the US recorded its first measles death in 12 years.

    And if that’s not proof enough, well — when’s the last time you heard of a kid sick in bed with diptheria?
    [Hint: In 1921 206,000 cases of diphtheria resulted in 15,520 deaths. Between 2004 and 2015, 2 cases of diphtheria were recorded in the United States.]

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