Michele Bachmann, the candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, has backed away from statements made linking the HPV vaccine and mental retardation earlier this week.

In a live televised debate on Monday, Bachmann claimed Texas Governor Rick Perry had put young girls’ lives at risk when he issued an executive order mandating that they receive an HPV vaccine known as Gardasil.

Later, on the ‘Today’ show, she recalled how a mother told her daughter had suffered ‘mental retardation’ after taking the vaccine.

Medical experts have criticized Bachmann for making the statements, however.

The American Academy of Pediatrics said Tuesday “there is absolutely no cientific validity” to her statement, saying it and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend administering the vaccine to girls around the ages of 11 and 12. The vaccine produces the best immune response in the body at that age, the AAP says.

Meanwhile, one bioethicists has called out Bachmann, betting she won’t be able to back up her statements.

"If she can produce a case…of a woman who became 'retarded' (her words) due to HPV vaccine, I will donate that [$10,000] to a charity of her choice" said Arthur Caplan, Penn University's director for their Center of Bioethics to USAToday.

“Is this is a bit of gimmick?, Yes. But it’s to make the point that you don’t want young women to not get this vaccine because their mothers are afraid of it,” Caplan added.

Meanwhile, Bachmann said at a rally in San Francisco on Thursday that she wasn’t drawing any conclusions with her statements about the drug.

“During the debate, I didn’t make any statements that would indicate I’m a doctor, I’m a scientist, or making any conclusions about the drug one way or the other,” Ms. Bachmann said yesterday. “I didn’t make any statements about that.”