Wakefield vaccine study was not correctly vetted

The medical journal that first printed the Andrew Wakefield report linking autism to childhood diseases only conducted limited investigations into complaints about the work, according to the journal BMJ.

BMJ announced on Jan. 18 that an examination into how the study was conducted by the Lancet was headed by its editor, who published the work, and involved no formal investigation into the allegations.

"In short, the accused were investigating themselves," BMJ reported, according to CNN.

The Jan. 18 article was the last in a three-part series that concluded that the Wakefield study was an elaborate fraud designed to enrich Wakefield and others through a business venture that could profit from the resulting scare.

A three year investigation by Britain’s General Medical Council concluded in 2010 that the way in which Wakefield conducted his research was dishonest and irresponsible. One month after these conclusions were announced, the Lancet retracted the study.

Since then, Wakefield’s license to practice medicine in the United Kingdom was revoked. He has insisted that he has done nothing wrong and a vocal group of advocates for children with autism continue to offer him their support.

In response to the article, the Lancet’s editors announced that they strongly disagree with the BMJ account and that they stand by their decisions and actions.