Vaccine Efficacy Denial: A Growing Concern Affecting Modern Science, and Impacting Public Health

Endocr Metab Immune Disord Drug Targets. 2022;22(9):935-943. doi: 10.2174/1871530322666220318092909.


The discovery of the vaccination technique was revealed by Edward Jenner in 1796, which represented the first scientific attempt to control an infectious disease by vaccines, followed by other important studies carried out by Pasteur and Koch, and Sabin, who developed the first technique to attenuate the virus. In recent decades, numerous scholars have begun to create dangerous theories against the effectiveness of vaccines through scientifically invalid or fraudulent studies. This critical review of the literature aims to analyze the main factors that have undermined the credibility of vaccines in the general population, disproved false information and emphasized the benefits of vaccines over the last 200 years. Unfortunately, several studies have been carried out without the proper scientific attention. The most impacting example is the study published by Andrew Wakefield in the Lancet journal who tried to correlate vaccines with the development of autism: this publication was withdrawn from the journal a few years after its publication, but the impact of incorrect scientific studies, fake news, and ambiguous healthcare policies have led to a general adverse opinion about the effectiveness of vaccines. The excess of uncontrolled information is a serious concern during the Coronavirus pandemic. Modern science must tackle this problem with a better willingness to communicate the clinical studies to those who cannot understand medical information. Nevertheless, a reliable science must also limit the distribution of studies that do not meet the basic criteria of methodological rigor and certainty of results in order not to incur confusion in the scientific community.

Keywords: Preventive medicine; history of medicine; modern science; pandemic; preventive medicine; public health; vaccines.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Coronavirus Infections*
  • Humans
  • Pandemics
  • Public Health
  • Vaccine Efficacy
  • Vaccines* / adverse effects


  • Vaccines