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Prevalence of Industry Support and its Relationship to Research Integrity

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posted on May, 21 2009 @ 06:25 PM

Newswise — A new study from the University of Virginia Health System has found that academic researchers who are highly reliant on industry support are most likely to have experienced questionable pressure from sponsors and to have first-hand knowledge of integrity breeches within their work environment. Those breeches not only compromise the well-being of medical research participants but also impact research initiatives, publication of results, interpretation of research data and scientific advancement.

Most prevalent forms of industry support - Sixty-six percent of respondents reported receiving industry support, the most prevalent forms of which were: research contracts or grants, honoraria, biomaterials, trips to professional meetings, support for staff or study coordinators, support for students or fellows, discretionary funds or gifts to the researcher’s institution, equipment, funds for publication costs and personal gifts of more than $100.

Questionable requests from industry sponsors – A minority of the 231 respondents funded by industry reported receiving questionable requests from their sponsors – 13 percent were asked to delay publication of research; nearly 8 percent were asked to tailor presentations to favor a sponsor’s drug or product; 7 percent were asked to keep their research secret; and 4 percent were asked to withhold results from publication.

Interesting, isn't it? Makes you wonder what studies have been compromised.

After doing a little bit of digging, I've found some information that is a bit startling. The American Dietetic Association(ADA) is surprisingly sponsored by a few unsuspected companies:

  • The Coca-Cola Company( the world’s largest beverage company, markets more than 400 brands in 200 countries, including sparkling and diet beverages, juices and juice drinks, waters, teas, coffees, energy and sports drinks.)
  • National Dairy Council(is the nutrition research, education and communications arm of Dairy Management Inc™)
  • PepsiCo(PepsiCo is one of the world's largest food and beverage companies, with 2006 annual revenues of more than $35 billion.)
  • CoroWise(are also recognized by a Food and Drug Administration health claim as a dietary approach for reduced risk of heart disease.)
  • General Mills(World's sixth largest food company)
  • Kellog's(With 2005 sales in excess of $10 billion, Kellogg Company (NYSE: K) is the world's leading producer of cereal and a leading producer of convenience foods.)
  • MARS(is a privately-held company that produces some of the world’s leading snackfood, food, petcare, beverage and health and nutrition products, and operates in more than 65 countries.)
  • SOYJOY(SOYJOY® is an all-natural snack with a home-baked taste that provides wholesome nutrition in each serving.)

I mean, hey, why not sponsor the ADA if you're an enormous Company that provides food to the world. You, major food producer, support them, the ADA, and they keep you in business by not relseasing studies that could cut into your profits; and vice versa, by relseasing studies that unscientifically support your products, thereby increasing your profits.

Ahhh, the world of industrialized food research. And don't, for one second, think that the Pharmaceuticals aren't involved in this debacle either.......


Article: Prevalence of Industry Support and its Relationship to Research Integrity
Actual Study:Prevalence of Industry Support and its Relationship to Research Integrity

posted on May, 27 2009 @ 05:18 PM
I'm not surprised by this, all the world comes down to these days is money money money...

posted on May, 27 2009 @ 07:49 PM
Who's supporting the American Heart Association(AHA)?

  • AstraZeneca:A Pharmceutical company that produces Crestor, Nexium and Prilosec, to name a few.
  • Subway: The SUBWAY® restaurant chain is the undisputed leader in the submarine sandwich category serving fresh, great tasting, made-for-you sandwiches and salads, many of which have 6 grams of fat or less.
  • Healhty Choice: A subsidiary of ConAgra Foods. Products include dinners and entrees, frozen novelties, canned and microwavable soup, bread, and pasta sauce.

It's becoming ever clearer that industry support is affecting "research" in the medical field.

It looks as though AstraZeneca began sponsoring the AHA in 2007. Why does this matter? Well, it's funny how in 2005, the AHA released a negative report about Crestor, AstraZeneca's cholesterol lowering medicine, which promptly led to a drop in Crestor's market share.

Now, after the sponsorship.....

Crestor Study Will Boost Statin Demand

In a study that will likely change medical practice, researchers reported that Crestor, a cholesterol-fighting statin made by AstraZeneca (AZN), reduced the risk of heart attack, stroke, and cardiovascular disease by a surprisingly robust 45% in people who do not have high cholesterol. The patients did have high levels of a protein associated with arterial inflammation that is not routinely measured.

Medical experts said the results, released Nov. 9 at the American Heart Association (AHA) meeting in New Orleans, will almost certainly expand the market for statins, already the world's best-selling drugs. They also will likely spark demand for a controversial and costly test for high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (CRP), a marker for inflammation, which has some practitioners worried about the cost/benefit of extrapolating the research to the general population.

What a change of heart(pun intended) by the AHA. It's really that obvious.

You know what they say, "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em!"


posted on Jun, 9 2009 @ 04:06 PM

Conflicts of interest found in many cancer studies

WASHINGTON, May 11 (Xinhua) -- A U.S. study have found that nearly one third of cancer research articles published in medical journals have financial ties with pharmaceutical companies.

The study, published online on Monday in the journal Cancer, indicates that conflicts of interest may cause some researchers to report biased results that are favorable to pharmaceutical companies.

Reshma Jagsi of the University of Michigan and her colleagues reviewed 1,534 cancer studies published on eight medical journals, including Cancer, the New England Journal of Medicine and the Lancet.

According to the researchers, 17 percent of the studies declared industry funding while 12 percent had a study author who was an industry employee. Randomized trials with reported conflicts of interest were more likely to have positive findings.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

The article continues by stressing that we need to disintangle these industry ties to cancer research. These conflicts of interest have no place in medical research. I think it's time to focus on finding sources of funding from somewhere other than the market that benefits from positive results.

This is information that affects you directly. This type of conspriacy is one of great importance, so much that if left alone it could prevent new discoveries and essentially stonewall the scientific process. But what do we do we do about it?


[edit on 9-6-2009 by DevolutionEvolvd]

posted on Dec, 4 2009 @ 08:17 PM

A systematic review2 found 30 studies investigating whether industry funding is associated with outcomes that favour the funder: studies sponsored by drug companies were more than four times as likely to have outcomes favouring the funder, compared with studies with other sponsors.

How does this systematic bias come about? One answer is questionable trial design. Studies are conducted, for example, where the competitor drug is given at an inadequate dose, or worse, at a higher dose, increasing the risk of side effects, and so making the sponsor’s drug appear to be preferable.3

Another common problem is that the industry can choose which data to publish, and which to leave unavailable. Much has been written on eye-catching stories, such as the difficulties in getting clear information about the number of suicide attempts in industry trials of SSRI antidepressants4 or the number of heart attacks in patients on rofecoxib (Vioxx).5

More concerning evidence showing the amount of influence drug companies, or funding companies, have on research integrity. This influence becomes increasingly clearer when drug companies are conducting experiments on their own drugs.

In medicine, bad information leads to bad decisions: we prescribe one drug where an alternative would have been more effective, or had fewer side effects; or we prescribe an expensive drug, unnecessarily, when a cheaper alternative was equally effective, and so we deprive the community of limited healthcare resources. This is dangerous and absurd. Doctors who are making treatment decisions need access to good quality trial data, presented transparently, and all of it, not just the positive findings that drug companies choose to share.

And, bad information leads to doctors precribing poor dietary advice, or prescribing expensive drugs to mask a symptom of a problem that can easily be remedied dietarily.



posted on Aug, 24 2010 @ 12:50 PM
Drug studies funded by industry are more likely to yield good news

When weighing the results of a medical study it's important to consider who supplied money to conduct the research. According to an analysis of drug trials published Monday, studies were much more likely to be positive -- that is, showing the drug worked -- in trials that were funded by the pharmaceutical industry.

Researchers reviewed 546 drug trials and found that industry-funded trials reported positive outcomes 85% of the time compared with 50% of the time for government-funded trials and 72% of the time for trials funded by nonprofits or non-federal organizations. Among the nonprofit or non-federal studies, those that received industry contributions were more likely to be positive (85%) compared with those that did not have any industry support (61%).

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