Merck MMR Vaccine Failed to Protect Thousands from Mumps

Saturday, February 14, 2015
Merck CEO Kenneth Frazier (photo: Wikipedia)

Pharmaceutical giant Merck is being accused falsifying data so it could sell a vaccine that wasn’t as effective as advertised and didn’t work for thousands of individuals.


Merck has a monopoly on vaccines for measles, mumps and rubella, or MMR and MMR II vaccines. These vaccines have been given to millions of Americans. Thousands of those inoculated still contracted the mumps during outbreaks in 2006, 2010 and 2014.


“In 2006, there were over 6,500 cases of mumps, which spread rapidly throughout eight states in the Midwest. Of those whose vaccination status was known, approximately 90 percent had been MMR II vaccinated, with 63 percent of those having received two or more doses,” Alex James wrote at Truthout. Four years later, James added, another outbreak affected 1,500 people in the New York-New Jersey area, and 88% of them had received the MMR II vaccine.


When another outbreak hit Ohio State University in April 2014, 97 percent of the 225 students who were infected had been vaccinated.


Merck is now being sued by two virologists who say the company knowingly falsified data about the effectiveness of the vaccine and still put it on the market. Former Merck employees Stephen Krahling and Joan Wlochowski said in 2010 that the company infused a blood sample with animal antibodies to make it look like the vaccine had elicited increased antibody production.


Merck needs to keep its efficacy at 95% so it will continue to be the exclusive supplier selected by the U.S. government to produce $1 billion worth of the vaccine annually, according to MedCity News.

-Noel Brinkerhoff


To Learn More:

Selective Outrage and Public Health: There Are Greater Dangers Than Anti-Vaxxers (by Alex James, Truthout)

Stirring the Pot on that Merck Whistleblower Suit for Falsified Mumps, Rubella, Measles Vaccine Data (by Meghana Keshavan, MedCity News)

Merck, Mumps, Motions, Whistleblowers—the actual story (Skeptical Raptor’s Blog)

Anti-Vaccine Movement Ushers Measles into the Limelight (by Ken Broder, AllGov California)


Adam Barlow 9 years ago
Works cited? I find the article helpful in arguing the efficacy of the MMR vaccine but the sources posted are second hand. I recommend all articles posted should have credible sources posted with the article. Regurgitation is widespread and causing argument based on misconstrued evidence.

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