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Vaccines, Autism and Fake Data

January 7, 2011

Andrew Wakefield published a paper claiming that regressive autism is caused by the MMR vaccine.  His finding was never replicated by any other researchers.  Why?  Because he falsified the data! His data is directly contradicted by the patient’s actual charts.  Some never even had autism.  Some had symptoms long before receiving the MMR shot and some didn’t have symptoms until long after.  He lied and people have suffered.

Wakefield has lost his UK medical license but that just doesn’t seem sufficient for the damage that he has caused.  Why did he do it?  Perhaps for the fame but mostly for the $750,000 that he received from lawyers representing people suing vaccine manufacturers.  Convenient, no?

I am also disgusted as a researcher.  This makes me suspicious.  Have other papers been based on bad data?  Fake data?  Fudged results.  Honestly, I have to assume that the answer is “Yes.  Probably.”

This is part of the reason why we should avoid accepting a single study at face value.  Scientific studies need to be replicated by different groups.  If a finding can’t be replicated, it could have just been chance.  We accept that there is a risk of error inherent in statistical analysis.  I do not accept that there is any justification for falsifying data or results.  Ever.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Dhimmi permalink
    January 31, 2011 12:58 am

    http://www.mlive.com/health/index.ssf/2011/01/andrew_wakefield_demands_retra.html

    Change your mind after reading perhaps? Show both sides of the story before jumping to conclusions. Unless you like jumping off the cliff often. Not everything is how it seems on the surface, don’t lie to yourself through life. Reality is not what we like to accept but is rather the totality of happenings around us that we must wholly digest as “real”, an unbiased and plain “real”. Unfortunately, the “real” you have presented in your post above is light years away from any truths you stand to defend. Good luck though, you are doing something….

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