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Basic vaccine chemistry for those who are confused by it

One of the problems, among many, with anti-vaccine activists, is a complete misunderstanding of the basics of vaccine chemistry. People get scared of long chemical names, or chemicals themselves, and wonder if a vaccine might be dangerous.

Setting aside the fact that vaccines undergo substantial and robust preclinical and clinical testing which has shown that the safety and effectiveness of vaccines are settled science, most of the chemicals in vaccines are not dangerous, especially from the aspect of toxicity.

The website, The Logic of Science, published an article about five simple chemistry facts. It’s a valuable article, so I wanted to utilize their list and apply it to an article about basic vaccine chemistry.

I know that this will oversimplify vaccine chemistry. But I think most of us, who focus on the overwhelming evidence that vaccines are safe and effective, know that the fundamental principles of chemistry are the basis of biomedical science which is the foundation of vaccines.

Without further ado, let’s look at basic vaccine chemistry.

Read More »Basic vaccine chemistry for those who are confused by it

Simple math – the dose makes the poison

If you spend any amount of time on the internet researching science and pseudoscience, you’ll find alarming claims about toxic or poisonous substances in our foods, vaccines, air, water, and so much else. And then you’ll find a lot of people (myself included) who try to present science-based evidence that these substances are neither toxic nor poisonous.

Generally, the pseudoscience argument proceeds along the lines of “this unpronounceable chemical is going to cause cancer.” And the science (read scientific skeptic) side says “wrong!” Or something like that.

Paracelsus, a 16th century Swiss German physician, alchemist, astrologer, is traditionally thought to have founded the discipline of toxicology, an important branch of medicine, physiology, and pharmacology. Paracelsus wrote one of the most important principles of toxicology:

All things are poisons, for there is nothing without poisonous qualities. It is only the dose which makes a thing poison.

In other words, if you’re speaking about substances in foods or vaccines or anything, the most important principle is that the dose makes the poison (or toxin). Everything that we can consume or breathe is potentially toxic, but what is the most overriding principle must be the dose.Read More »Simple math – the dose makes the poison