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Originally posted by Terapin
I think the new regulations are a step in the right direction. Being paid by a pharmaceutical company while one of its drugs is under the scrutiny of NIH is a clear conflict of interest. The same goes for holding stocks in other bio/pharm businesses. If there is any disruption in business in the area it will be short lived. No privately owned company NEEDS a NIH employee on its payroll. Honest IS the best policy and this just makes things much clearer.
Interviews and corporate and federal records obtained by the Los Angeles Times document hundreds of consulting payments to ranking NIH officials, including:
* Katz, director of the NIH's National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, who collected between $476,369 and $616,365 in company fees in the last decade, according to his yearly income-disclosure reports. Some of his fees were reported in ranges without citing exact figures. Schering AG paid Katz at least $170,000. Another company paidhim more than $140,000 in consulting fees. It won $1.7 million in grants from his institute before going bankrupt last year.
* Dr. John I. Gallin, director of the NIH's Clinical Center, the nation's largest site of medical experiments on humans, who has received between $145,000 and $322,000 in fees and stock proceeds for his consulting from 1997 through last year. In one case, Gallin co-wrote an article highlighting a company's gene-transfer technology, while hiring on as a consultant to a subsidiary of that company.
* Dr. Richard C. Eastman, the NIH's top diabetes researcher in 1997, who wrote to the Food and Drug Administration that year defending a product without disclosing in his letter that he was a paid consultant to the manufacturer. Eastman's letter said the risk of liver failure from the drug was "very minimal." Six months later, a patient, Audrey LaRue Jones, who was taking the drug in an NIH study that Eastman oversaw, suffered sudden liver failure and died. Liver experts found that the drug probably caused the liver failure.
* Dr. Ronald N. Germain, deputy director of a major laboratory at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, who has collected more than $1.4 million in company consulting fees in the last 11 years, plus stock options. One of the companies collaborated with his laboratory on research. The founder of another of the companies worked with Germain on a separate NIH-sponsored project.
* Jeffrey Schlom, director of the National Cancer Institute's Laboratory of Tumor Immunology and Biology, who has taken $331,500 in company fees over 10 years. Schlom helped lead NIH-funded studies exploring wider use for a cancer drug -- at the same time that his highest-paying client was seeking to make the drug through genetic engineering.
* Jeffrey M. Trent, who became scientific director of the National Human Genome Research Institute in 1993 and, over the next three years, reported between $50,608 and $163,000 in industry consulting fees. Trent, who accepted nearly half of that income from a company active in genetic research, was not required to file public financial-disclosure statements as of 1997. He left the government last year.
Originally posted by FredT
Good find obsidian468,
I think we do need to balance the ethics of a governing body with the understaning that we do not always get the best and the brightest to the government sector.