In January 2011, an article by Brian Deer and its accompanying editorial in BMJ identified Wakefield's work as an "elaborate fraud". In a follow-up article, Deer said that Wakefield had planned to launch a venture on the back of an MMR vaccination scare that would profit from new medical tests and "litigation driven testing". However, by that time, Wakefield's study and public recommendations against the use of the combined MMR vaccine were linked to a steep decline in vaccination rates in the United Kingdom and a corresponding rise in measles cases, resulting in serious illness and several fatalities. Wakefield has continued to defend his research and conclusions, saying there was no fraud, hoax or profit motive.
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