Controversial British doctor defends autism research

Andrew Wakefield, the British physician who in 1998 published findings indicating a link between childhood vaccines and autism and now faces professional banishment for his questionable research methods, says he was only trying to help a desperate mother. His subsequent studies, some say, violated ethical guidelines in part by paying children at his son's birthday party about $10 for blood samples; supporters say Wakefield is the victim of a witch hunt.

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