Who is Andrew Wakefield?
Andrew Jeremy Wakefield is a British former surgeon and medical researcher, known for his fraudulent 1998 research paper in support of the now-discredited claim that there is a link between the administration of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine, and the appearance of autism and bowel disease.
Four years after the publication of the paper, other researchers' results had still failed to reproduce Wakefield's findings or confirm his hypothesis of a relation between childhood gastrointestinal disorders and autism. A 2004 investigation by Sunday Times reporter Brian Deer identified undisclosed financial conflicts of interest on Wakefield's part, and most of his co-authors then withdrew their support for the study's interpretations. The British General Medical Council conducted an inquiry into allegations of misconduct against Wakefield and two former colleagues. The investigation centred on Deer's numerous findings, including one that autistic children were subjected to unnecessary invasive medical procedures, such as colonoscopy and lumbar puncture, and that Wakefield acted without the required ethical approval from an institutional review board.
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