Andrew Wakefield (born 1957) is a British former surgeon and medical researcher known for his fraudulent claims of a causative connection between the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine, autism and autistic enterocolitis. The latter controversial term was created by Wakefield to describe an unproven form of inflammatory bowel disease.
Four years after the publication of the study, the findings of other researchers failed to confirm or reproduce Wakefield's. A 2004 investigation by Sunday Times reporter Brian Deer identified undisclosed financial conflicts of interest on Wakefield's part, and most of his coauthors then withdrew their support for the study's interpretations. The British General Medical Council (GMC) 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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