Tuesday, February 02, 2010

A good result but a measly outcome


The medical journal which originally published the discredited research linking autism and MMR has now issued a full retraction of the paper. The Lancet said it now accepted claims made by the researchers were "false".
It comes after Dr Andrew Wakefield, the lead researcher in the 1998 paper, was ruled last week to have broken research rules by the General Medical Council.
Last week, the GMC ruled that Dr Wakefield had shown a "callous disregard" for children and acted "dishonestly" while he carried out his research. It will decide later whether to strike him off the medical register.
The regulator only looked at how he acted during the research, not whether the findings were right or wrong - although they have been widely discredited by medical experts across the world in the years since publication.

And a sad reminder, to the media who love a scare story as well as to slapdash scientists, that actions have consequences:

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