Judy Anne Mikovits is an American anti-vaccination activist, conspiracy theorist, and former medical researcher. She has made discredited claims about vaccines, coronavirus, and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS).
As research director of a CFS research organization Whittemore Peterson Institute (WPI) from 2006-2011, Mikovits led a research effort that reported in 2009 that a retrovirus known as xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus (XMRV) was associated with CFS and may have had a causal role.
However, the research came under fire, leading to an eventual retraction on December 22, 2011, by the journal Science.
In October 2011, Mikovits was terminated by the WPI due to disputes over the control of lab samples and the integrity of her work; she subsequently came under investigation for alleged manipulation of data in her publications related to XMRV.
On November 18, 2011, she was arrested in her Ventura County, California, home and jailed for 5 days based on WPI’s allegations that she stole materials from the organization. Her lawyer said the charges had no merit.
By November 28, after negotiations with the WPI, some lab notes were returned.
Later, the criminal charges against her were dismissed by the Reno, Nevada, District Attorney’s office.