Think what you will of the stance former Playboy playmate cum advocate Jenny McCarthy has taken on autism, but there's no denying that this impassioned mother has helped bring the battle to cure the developmental disorder to the forefront of our attention. While her first three books made us laugh our way through pregnancy and our first years as parents – who can forget her description of what really happens on the delivery table – she has come to symbolize one side of the autism debate in America.

In May 2007, McCarthy announced that her son, Evan, was diagnosed with autism after suffering from a series of seizures following his measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine. Since then, she has been very vocal against the use of mercury in childhood vaccines and for the use of Chelation therapy to treat affected tots. Much to the dismay of many scientists, doctors and her fellow Hollywood mamas, McCarthy has co-authored a book detailing how she and Evan's pediatrician helped her child recover. While the debate wages on, McCarthy has made it her mission to help fellow mothers and find a cure.