Tom Jefferson Concealed Glaxo Consultancy from Lawsuit-Killing Paper

In a 2003, Tom Jefferson led a systematic review published in Vaccine mere days before legal aid funding was cut from MMR vaccine litigation in the UK. The review purported to exonerate the vaccine of causing autism and several gastrointestinal disorders. His sole disclosure in the review was that he “acted as an ad hoc consultant for a legal team advising MMR manufacturers” in 1999. He did not disclose what he would reveal in other publications, namely that he “acted as a consultant for…GSK (2001–2002).” GlaxoSmithKline was one of the manufacturers of MMR being sued. Jefferson concealed this from his Vaccine review and in his later Cochrane Review that drew similar conclusions in 2005.

Meanwhile, he was disclosing his GSK consultancy elsewhere including a 2004 article in BMJ  about influenza.

Later on, Jefferson began playing down his ties to GlaxoSmithKline as simply owning “shares” in the company. In his 2006 BMJ article critical of influenza vaccines, he disclosed that “he owned shares in Glaxo SmithKline” for an unspecified time. He made the same disclosure in a 2005 letter to The Lancet that included some of his fellow Cochrane coauthors, published the month before his Cochrane Review.


In the 2018 HPV vaccine critique he coauthored with Peter Gøtzsche, Jefferson’s “shares” had since morphed back into a paid consultancy.

The bottom line is that Jefferson was disclosing his ties to GlaxoSmithKline in publications where disclosure was convenient for him to do so. When he made the disclosure, he was critiquing influenza or HPV vaccines. When he didn’t, he was defending the MMR vaccine.

The problem is that these selective disclosures really show that Jefferson is influenced by his industry ties. He is so influenced by them that he will disclose them some places but not others depending on how they affect the perception of his publications.

Just as bad is the impact his earlier non-disclosures had on vaccine-injured children’s litigation. The cutting of legal aid from the UK’s Legal Services Commission effectively doomed their chances of justice. The disclosure of GlaxoSmithKline’s connection was particularly important, in light of the fact that the company thwarted the litigation in more ways than one.

Yet now Tom Jefferson is a “deputy director” of Peter Gøtzsche’s group ironically named the “Institute for Scientific Freedom.” Jefferson should never be trusted on issues of vaccine safety or academic freedom ever again.

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5 Thoughts on “Tom Jefferson Concealed Glaxo Consultancy from Lawsuit-Killing Paper

  1. Hans Litten on March 28, 2019 at 6:16 pm said:

    So they admit its warfare !

    Will the Internet’s War on Anti-Vaxxers Work?
    “If they censor us there, we’ll find another way to speak out”
    By EJ Dickson

    People hold signs at a rally held in opposition to a proposed bill that would remove parents’ ability to claim a philosophical exemption to opt their school-age children out of the combined measles, mumps and rubella vaccine, at the Capitol in Olympia, Wash., Feb. 2019.

    For the past few months, Big Tech has been waging a public, if not highly effective, battle against the scourge of Fake News, with platforms like Facebook and YouTube taking aim at content promoting conspiracy theories, from the silly (Flat Earth) to the more menacing (QAnon).

    Now, following a handful of measles outbreaks across the country and pressure from national lawmakers, tech platforms are taking aim at another fringe group: anti-vaxxers, or people who refuse to or delay vaccinating their children. A relatively small yet vocal community, anti-vaxxers promote a wide range of views, from the theory that vaccines contain dangerously high levels of toxins to the belief that vaccines can cause autism. Such theories have been debunked time and again by most researchers, and the overwhelming scientific consensus is that vaccines save lives and potential side effects are both rare and minimal. But that hasn’t stopped some skeptical parents from delaying vaccinating their children or opting out of doing so altogether, and from taking to social media to propagate conspiracy theories about Big Pharma and the government.

  2. Hans Litten on March 28, 2019 at 6:17 pm said:

    Remember Nuremberg – seems the Germans have forgotten recent history already

    ‘Children have a right to be immunized’: German doctors demand vaccinations

  3. Hans Litten on March 29, 2019 at 8:26 am said:

    Armed police raid home to seize boy who had not been vaccinated

    Police in Arizona forced their way into a home with guns drawn to remove an unvaccinated toddler with a high fever, amid mounting concern over falling immunisation rates in the US.

    Officers in Chandler, south-east of Phoenix, broke down the door of the family home after Sarah Beck and Brooks Bryce, the child’s parents, refused to let police and a child safety official enter. The couple’s three children have since been taken into care.

    The couple said they took their feverish two-year-old son Heber to a naturopath clinic and were told he had a temperature of 105F (40.5C).

    Doctors directed the parents to take the toddler, who has not been vaccinated, to hospital but Ms Beck decided not to because the child’s fever later fell 102F (38C).

    However, when the clinic learned the child never went to the hospital it alerted the authorities, fearing he had a life-threatening illness.

    It comes as public health officials call for tighter regulations around vaccines, warning the number of US children who have not had any vaccines has quadrupled since 2001. Five states have reported outbreaks of measles this year.

    An investigator spoke to the doctor and contacted officers, according to the police report. The police said officers arrived at the family home but were refused entry.

    Mr Bryce told a local TV station: “They said ‘Brooks, you have to come out of your house right now… We have to check on them’ and I said ‘He’s doing fine, his temperature is 100. He’s safe, he’s asleep, could you please just leave us alone’.”

    Mr Bryce’s surveillance footage, shared with US media, showed the officers – who had a warrant – proceeded to break down the door.

    “Guns drawn, flashlights shining on me… they saw me and asked me to put my hands up,” said Mr Bryce, who was handcuffed while police searched the home.

    When officers entered the house, the report continued, they found more that two more children, aged four and six, were suffering from similar symptoms.

  4. Hans Litten on March 29, 2019 at 12:41 pm said:

    Message for Mr Del BigTree : (please see this as the tipping of my hat to you)

    my Pastor Niemoller :

    First they came for the “alternative doctors” & killed 100 of them, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not an “alternative doctor” (& I didn’t understand, I was too busy watching rubbish primetime reality TV).

    Then they came for the anti-vaccinationists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not an “anti-vaccinationist” (& I didn’t understand, I was too busy with endless repetitive sporting events on TV).

    Then they came for the so called “conspiracy theorists”, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a “conspiracy theorist” (& I didn’t understand, I hadnt picked up or read a book since I was forced to in school aged 14).

    Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me
    (& I still didn’t understand, the truth is I’m a bit dim – where is my TV?).

  5. Pingback: Tom Jefferson Concealed Glaxo Consultancy from Lawsuit-Killing Paper - NAMELY LIBERTY

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