Read the most advanced science of autism causes here. Bypass the commenterati and go direct to the science. Don't waste your time at the sites which pretend "no-one" knows what causes (or what sometimes cures) autism.
This is a website relating to the unchallenged theory of autism, IQ and genius, Personality and Individual Differences 14:459-482 (1993) by Robin P Clarke (the antiinnatia theory). An update review paper is being prepared for publication. Meanwhile you can download the original 1993 publication (presentationally revised) here, and the original 1993 publication (author's reprint) here . (the journal site version is here:, but without added charts of social class and you may have to pay Elsevier $31.)

Why mercury supposedly could not get to DNA to cause antiinnatia!

Wegener's collossal epoch-making discovery of continental drift was dismissed with derision by the community of professional geologists for 50 years, apparently merely because he was unable to show any mechanism by which the continents might drift. That was even though his deriders were in no position to show anything that would prevent the continental drift. And was even though volcanos have long made it reasonable to believe there is a layer of molten rock under the Earth's crust.

A similar situation exists in respect of the incorporation of environmental mercury into the antiinnatia theory (in the forthcoming update review paper). 'Skeptical' nitpickers could say that there is no demonstrated means by which mercury ions could reach the DNA in order to attach to it as per the theory. They would point out that the DNA is in working normal life not loosely and openly floating around in body fluids but instead is confined to a very controlled environment of proteins such as histones and secluded away inside the protective membrane of the cell's nucleus which in turn is some way in from the cell's lipid bilayer outer membrane. They would further point out that the DNA is to a large extent tightly curled up in condensed inactive form, further inhibiting unconstrained access by rogue mercury atoms. They would claim that mercury would have already bound with sulphydryls of proteins before it could get to the DNA. They would claim that mercury is bound much more strongly to other things than to DNA (though not sure if there's any real evidence on that).

Those who dismissed Wegener's continental drift theory could not show any videos or even photos from under the Earth to substantiate their assertions. And likewise those who would dismiss the idea of mercury getting to the DNA can't actually show any proof that mercury never gets to it. And despite even some of those queries listed above being true, they do not genuinely undermine the case, as I will now explain.

The antiinnatia theory does not entail a notion that most or even a high proportion of gene-expression is suppressed by antiinnatia. If it were then it would surely result in non-life or at the very least a being that had little resemblance to a human. On the contrary, antiinnatia theory entails only a very small proportion of gene-expression being suppressed, perhaps 1/1000th or less to produce an autism diagnosis condition. Furthermore it is not being suggested that all children exposed to mercury become autistic, rather only a small minority. And even they only become affected by the mercury after 18 months or so, in accordance with the evidence shown in the update paper.

Furthermore there is the fallacious notion that mercury is absolutely a "bad" "toxic" thing such that the organism's mechanisms could only be designed to keep it out. On the contrary, the whole point of the antiinnatia theory is that antiinnatia is highly advantageous provided it does not reach the excessive levels which manifest as autism.

And so, at lower levels, mercury as an antiinnatia factor would not be opposed by the organism but actually positively selected for. There would be natural selection positive selection of processes (or 'faults') which passively or even actively admit mercury to access the DNA. I don't mean flooding the DNA with mercury, but merely allowing just a very few atoms of Hg to sprinkle themselves sparsely on the DNA. DNA strands are rather complex molecules. It is quite conceivable that there are occasional locations among all that complexity at which a mercury atom could find itself relatively welcome and unrepelled.

That is clearly a far from unreasonable concept. Everyone is free to choose their own reckoning of the burden of proof in this matter, but it looks to me like the common-sense burden of proof lies with any "skeptics" to show that the mercury could not even occasionally, even after 18 months constant exposure, even in very modest doses get to the DNA, rather than the burden being to show that it does.

Should I say that "absence of evidence is not evidence of absence"? No, because there is not an absence of evidence. In the update review I will show the compelling abundance of other (including non-biochemical) evidence that mercury is an antiinnatia factor. That's what gives me faith in the unseen, faith that the binding to DNA that has been decisively shown in vitro also occurs in living human beings.

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