DIRECTOR Andrew Wakefield MB.BS., is an academic gastroenterologist. He received his medical degree from St. Mary’s Hospital Medical School, London in 1981. He qualified as Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in 1985 and trained as a gastrointestinal surgeon with a particular interest in inflammatory bowel disease. He was awarded a Wellcome Trust Traveling Fellowship to study small-intestinal transplantation in Toronto. He was made a Fellow of the Royal College of Pathologists in the U.K. in 2001. Wakefield has published over 140 original scientific papers, reviews, and book chapters.
In 1995, as an academic physician working in a London teaching hospital, he was contacted by the parent of an autistic child with stomach issues. He soon learned from several other parents with autistic behaviors, that their children’s regressive behavior immediately followed an MMR vaccine. He started investigating a possible role between gastrointestinal issues, the MMR vaccine, and neurological injury in children. In pursuit of this possible link, Dr. Wakefield participated in a study of twelve children with both stomach and developmental issues. The ensuing report, written with twelve other authors would catapult Wakefield into becoming one of the most controversial figures in the history of Medicine.