Charlatan fraud and all round liar Andrew Wakefield received the perfect present for christmas in the form of the inaugural Golden Duck award for lifetime achievement in quackery
According to the Guardian he received the award for his deservedly discredited research that claimed to find a link between autism and the MMR vaccine. The award was set up by set up by the science writer Simon Singh. Runners-up for the award were Prince Charles and David Tredinnick, the Tory MP for Bosworth and member of the Commons health select committee (He is also known as the Right Honourale memer for Holland and Barrett for his championing of useless treatments such as homeopathy).
The Good Thinking Society, a campaign group led by Singh, set up the annual Golden Duck award to recognise those "who have supported or practised pseudoscience in the most ludicrous, dangerous, irrational or irresponsible manner".
In 1998, Wakefield was the lead author of a paper in the Lancet medical journal that suggested a link between the measles virus and inflammatory bowel disease. The paper also suggested the virus played a role in the development of autism. Wakefield later said that his research led him to believe that, instead of the MMR triple vaccine, children should be given a series of single vaccines. His statements led to alarm around the world, a drop in the rate of MMR vaccination and, in the UK, a rise in cases of measles cases. In 2010, the Lancet formally retracted Wakefield's paper and he was struck off the medical register after being found guilty of serious professional misconduct.
Tredinnick made the shortlist for his parliamentary motions supporting homeopathy and other unproven medical ideas. Prince Charles was on the list for his long-term support for groups that lobby for alternative, unproven therapies.
Sadly Wakefield should share the award with the legion of lazy and manipulatie hacks who continued to perpetuate his bullshit for years despite all of the evidence to the contrary.