A doctor who persuaded millions of parents worldwide that a common vaccine could cause autism was barred from practicing medicine in his native Britain on Monday after the country’s top medical group found he conducted his research unethically.
Dr. Andrew Wakefield was the first researcher to publish a peer-reviewed study suggesting a connection between autism and the vaccine for measles, mumps and rubella. That prompted legions of parents to abandon the vaccine in moves that epidemiologists feared could lead to outbreaks of the potentially deadly diseases.
Vaccination rates in Britain and other rich countries have not fully recovered since Wakefield and his colleagues' research was published in 1998 and there are measles outbreaks across Europe every year. There are also sporadic outbreaks of the disease in the U.S.
Full story: News from The Associated Press