Response to measles-mumps-rubella vaccine in children with autism spectrum disorders

In Vivo. 2013 May-Jun;27(3):377-82.


Background/aim: The etiology of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) is unknown. The measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccination has been in the past implicated in ASD pathogenesis. The aim of our study was to evaluate the rate of seropositivity and the levels of antibodies against MMR antigens in a cohort of children with ASD compared to control children.

Patients and methods: In a cohort of children with ASD and same-age healthy controls, we measured levels and seropositivity of antibodies against MMR.

Results: A total of 60 children, 31 with ASD and 29 controls were enrolled. The seropositivity rate and levels of all the three antibodies were similar in cases and controls.

Conclusion: Children with ASD have a similar level and seropositivity rate of antibodies against the MMR vaccine to same-age controls. As persistent infections are typically associated with high antibody levels, our results support the arguments against a role of MMR vaccination as a causal factor or co-factor in development of ASD.

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Viral / blood
  • Antibodies, Viral / immunology
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / blood
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / immunology*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Measles / immunology
  • Measles / prevention & control*
  • Measles-Mumps-Rubella Vaccine / immunology*
  • Mumps / immunology
  • Mumps / prevention & control*
  • Rubella / immunology
  • Rubella / prevention & control*


  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Measles-Mumps-Rubella Vaccine