In Autism’s False Prophets: Bad Science, Risky Medicine, and the Search for a Cure, Paul Offit looks at the history of autism research and shows the ways in which some researchers have misled the public by asserting a connection between vaccines and autism. Andrew Wakefield, a London doctor was one of the first and most prominent figures claiming a link between the MMR (measles-mumps-rubella) vaccine and autism.
Now, according to an investigation by the Times of London, it turns out that Andrew Wakefield changed and misreported findings in his research to create the appearance of a possible link between the MMR vaccine and autism.
Wakefield’s manipulated findings first appeared in The Lancet in 1998 and had an extraordinary impact: inoculation rates in Britain dropped while cases of measles jumped from 58 in 1998 to 1,348 in 2008.
Andrew Wakefield must now defend himself against allegations of serious professional misconduct brought by the General Medical Council.