Clinical safety issues of measles, mumps and rubella vaccines

Bull World Health Organ. 2000;78(2):199-204.


The clinical safety of measles and measles-mumps-rubella vaccines has been questioned in recent reports that propose a possible link between measles virus or measles vaccines and the occurrence of juvenile Crohn disease and autism. This article reviews the outcomes of several laboratory investigations which were carried out independently to identify the presence or absence of measles virus in the intestinal tissues derived from cases of inflammatory bowel disease. One research group reported the presence of measles virus particles and genomic RNA in inflammatory bowel disease tissues, but this could not be confirmed by other groups, despite use of techniques that are highly specific and sensitive for the detection of measles virus nucleic acid in clinical specimens down to the molecular level. Based on the published data reviewed here, it can be concluded that there is no direct association between measles virus or measles vaccines and the development of Crohn disease, a conclusion which is supported by most epidemiological findings.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Measles Vaccine / adverse effects*
  • Measles Vaccine / standards
  • Measles-Mumps-Rubella Vaccine
  • Mumps Vaccine / adverse effects*
  • Mumps Vaccine / standards
  • Rubella Vaccine / adverse effects*
  • Rubella Vaccine / standards
  • Vaccines, Attenuated / adverse effects
  • Vaccines, Attenuated / standards
  • Vaccines, Combined / adverse effects
  • Vaccines, Combined / standards


  • Measles Vaccine
  • Measles-Mumps-Rubella Vaccine
  • Mumps Vaccine
  • Rubella Vaccine
  • Vaccines, Attenuated
  • Vaccines, Combined