Letters Section Editor: Stephen J. Lurie,
MD, PhD, Senior Editor.
To the Editor: In their article on the association
between thimerosal-containing vaccines and autism, Dr Hviid and colleagues1 acknowledged their affiliations with Statens Serum
Institut, Copenhagen, Denmark, but did not disclose that the institute is
a for-profit, state-owned enterprise with roughly $120 million in annual revenue.
According to its 2002 Annual Report,2 vaccines
represent approximately one half of Statens Serum Institut's revenues and
more than 80% of its profits. Furthermore, Statens Serum Institut manufactured
the now discontinued monocomponent pertussis vaccine that contained thimerosal
under investigation in their study. They were also the providers of diphtheria
and tetanus components of a major thimerosal-containing diphtheria and tetanus
toxoids and acellular pertussis vaccine (DTaP) vaccine sold in the United
Rimland B. Association Between Thimerosal-Containing Vaccine and Autism. JAMA. 2004;291(2):180. doi:10.1001/jama.291.2.180-a