This is the last week to enjoy the 15th Annual Concert for Autism presented by the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians.  The Main Event is Saturday, October 22, from 3 p.m. to midnight at the Tack Room Tavern in Indio, CA. Autism (ASD) is a developmental disability that typically appears during the first three years of life. It impacts the normal development of the brain in areas of social interaction and communication skills. A person with ASD may exhibit repeated body movements, unusual responses to people or attachments to objects, resistance to changes in routine, and aggression. ASD is the fastest growing developmental disability in the country.

Vaccines and Autism: A Tale of Shifting Hypotheses

Childhood vaccines were considered the culprit, due to thimerosal, a preservative toxic to the nervous system. Today, the most commonly used vaccine preservative is aluminum, not thimerosal. According to a 2018 study, people with autism were found to have high amounts of aluminum in brain tissue.


In 2014 a senior scientist at the CDC admitted to omitting data suggesting 3.36 times increase in autism in African American males who received the MMR vaccine before the age of 36 months. The latest estimates show that 1 in 30, or 3.49%, of children ages 3 to 17 were diagnosed with ASD in 2020.

Environmental Toxins Affecting Autism

Stephanie Seneff has for decades investigated possible causes for the high rates of ASD in American children. Her YouTube video shows the increased risk for ASD when children are exposed to glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller that is also present in many foods.

The Mystery of Acetaminophen

In October 2021 more than 90 scientists, doctors, and public health researchers called for new safety reviews of the common painkiller acetaminophen. Mounting evidence of fetal exposure to acetaminophen could increase the risk of neurodevelopmental disorders and reproductive system effects. Taking acetaminophen in the second trimester had a 226% higher risk of being diagnosed with ADHD or ASD. A 2017 study even claims the use of acetaminophen in babies and young children may be much more strongly associated with autism than its use during pregnancy.

Treatment options

The benefit/risk profile of medical marijuana seems fairly benign when compared to Risperdal the least useful and most dangerous of psychotropic drugs. Reports from parents indicate that medical marijuana often works when no other treatments, drug, or non-drug, have helped.

Mieko Hester-Perez, the founder of the Unconventional Foundation for Autism, is an advisory board member to Cannabis Science and advocates for medical cannabis. Coming from a conservative family with deep roots in law enforcement, she’s an unlikely cannabis advocate. However, she is the mother of Joey, the boy for whom the cannabis strain, “Joey’s” was developed. Buds and Roses Collective in Los Angeles carried this strain developed by master cultivator Kyle Kushman.

Biomarkers Determining Effectiveness of Cannabis

Dr. Bonnie Goldstein, is a pediatric physician, specializing in treating refractory childhood diseases with cannabis. Her groundbreaking research used cannabis-responsive Biomarkers, chemicals in our body, that are part of chemical pathways that help our cells to function. These chemical biomarkers can be picked up in saliva, or blood, and used to measure specific behaviors or diseases. An example is when a physician measures the white blood cell (WBC) count when someone gets an infection. WBC count is an example of a biomarker for infection. Another biomarker is the PSA level which shows prostate cancer.

Goldstein’s research measured 31 biomarkers for autism, that shifted physiological changes when cannabis was ingested. A number of studies found children with autism have low levels of anandamide (THC), which is a natural endocannabinoid that we make. Low levels, or a deficiency, of anandamide is present in autism. CBD is not a direct replacement for anandamide. It can help make the body’s own anandamide work better, but some patients need THC. We know from Dr. Mechoulam and others, THC seems to be the direct replacement for anandamide.

Learn more about how to use Marijuana Without the High on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of the every month from 11 AM to 1 PM at the Vault Dispensary Lounge. Call 760-866-9660 or send comments to

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