Policy & Regulation: August 2010 Archives
Wednesday August 4, 2010
A new study finds that published research paid for by drug companies is more likely than not to be favorable to the company's product. Researchers from Children's Hospital in Boston reviewed 546 clinical trials conducted between 2000 and 2006. The trials were listed with ClinicalTrials.gov, a government web site that lists registered clinical trials.
Studies paid for by drug companies reported favorable findings about their products 85% of the time, while those paid for by the government reported favorable results 50% of the time. The studies involved five of the most popular types of drugs on the market, including cholesterol-lowering drugs, antidepressants, antipsychotics, proton-pump inhibitors, and blood pressure medications.
The other key finding in the study is that pharma-sponsored clinical trials take longer to be published than studies paid for by other sources. Thirty-two percent of studies paid for by the pharmaceutical industry were published within two years of the study's completion, compared to 54% of studies paid for by the government and 56% of studies paid for by non-profit groups.
To me, the current report confirms my longstanding view that pharma-sponsored studies are biased by the drive for corprorate profits. The fact they take longer to be published suggests to me that the data is carefuly scrutinized for corporate harm before being submitted for publication.
More needs to be done to protect the public interest. It's great that clinical trials are registered with ClinicalTrials.gov. But we need to learn more about the trials that aren't published -- the ones I suspect are less favorable to pharma's interests.
Bottom line: whenever you hear a good news study about a drug, ask who paid for it.
Categories: Accountability, Health Professionals, Law & Ethics, Past Episodes, Pharma, Policy & Regulation, Technology & Innovation
- December 2011
- November 2011
- October 2011
- Fri., 7 – Respect Show
- September 2011
- June 2011
- Mon., 13 – Medical Deans Who Plagiarize Should Resign
- May 2011
- April 2011
- March 2011
- Thu., 31 – Older Doctors Mailbag
- February 2011
- Mon., 7 – Reverse Medical Tourism?
- January 2011
- November 2010
- Wed., 24 – Wednesday Mailbag
- October 2010
- September 2010
- Wed., 22 – Wednesday Mailbag
- August 2010
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