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Sharing Scientific Data: Glaxo­SmithKline Now On Line?

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posted on Oct, 21 2012 @ 11:05 AM
It's a tough issue. The way things work, our tax dollars and donations fund research - but the research is privately owned and used for private profit. Big Pharma and Big Business hold the rights.

Now, things might be changing. Maybe.

Uncloaking Clinical Trials

Glaxo­SmithKline will share long-sought, raw trial data—but access will be tightly controlled.

In an about-face on the issue of candor, the pharmaceutical giant Glaxo­SmithKline (GSK) will systematically begin making its vast archives of clinical trial data available to researchers, the company announced last week (October 11). But the data won’t be completely accessible: GSK will still control access by assembling a panel, charged with reviewing and granting requests to view the data, to “ensure that this information will be used for valid scientific endeavor.”

In the announcement, the company—which once sided with the rest of the pharmaceutical sector by keeping all such unpublished data under lock and key —explained the philosophical flip by stating that a data release will “enable additional scientific inquiry and analyses to further scientific knowledge and help bring benefit to patients.” The decision comes in the wake of several trial-related scandals by big pharmaceutical companies over the past decade, including one earlier this year in which GSK paid a whopping $3 billion settlement to US authorities for—in part—obfuscating clinical trial results.

Everybody's hoping for the best, but few are convinced...

The new access has some GSK researchers and academic scientists hopeful of greater transparency and collaboration in the future. ...others are wary of the restrictions and hesitant to laud GSK until it’s clear how accessible and detailed the released data will be.

“Let’s wait and see,” Kay Dickersin, director of the Center for Clinical Trials at the Johns Hopkins University told Nature. Dickersin warned that the real value of such a reveal would be determined by the details of the data sets, including the patient-level information, the trial design, and analysis explanation—aspects GSK has not explicitly stated will be available.

Your thoughts?


posted on Oct, 21 2012 @ 11:51 AM
reply to post by soficrow

From the linked article:

But the data won’t be completely accessible: GSK will still control access by assembling a panel, charged with reviewing and granting requests to view the data, to “ensure that this information will be used for valid scientific endeavor.”

Not exactly sharing in my book, which imho it should be. At the end of the day it's Big Pharma, I can't see them doing anything to help anyone except themselves or their shareholders but I hope I'm wrong.

posted on Oct, 21 2012 @ 12:04 PM
reply to post by soficrow

In other words they will make all the information already know available. Transparency at its finest (sic).


posted on Oct, 21 2012 @ 01:23 PM
reply to post by LightSpeedDriver

lol. I'm not holding my breath.


Public awareness and outcry are the tools we have - and they did get us this far. So keep the pressure on.

posted on Oct, 21 2012 @ 02:27 PM
reply to post by ColoradoJens

I agree - it's not really real. I just assumed GlaxoSmithKline was covering butt because of all the lawsuits - especially the $3 billion judgment in favor of the US government.

BUT. I just had a Eureka moment. Consider this:

3-D DNA Printers: Download Meds, Vaccines

J. Craig Venter, who won awards for cracking the human genetic code back in 2000 and hit the headlines again in 2010 when he and colleagues created the first self-replicating cell with a synthetic genome, now is testing 3-D DNA printers.

Designed for “biological teleportation,” these printers could let us download our meds - and potentially, neutralize threats of epidemics and pandemics.

The famed geneticist says his team is testing 3-D DNA printers …

… (a) digital biological converter—designed for what Venter calls “biological teleportation” …

Imagine being able to download a vaccine or your medicine on your computer at home,” …

"That's the not-to-distant future, and it wipes out the possibility of an epidemic."

Venter Supports DNA Printers

This is HUGE in every way. Venter's technology would destroy the entire pharmaceutical industry, not just GlaxoSmithKline. And never mind the science, we're looking at a major revision of our economic system: a few years ago, the drug industry passed the oil industry as the world's largest industry. If Venter's 3-D DNA printer flies, we're facing a complete overhaul.

No wonder GlaxoSmithKline is pretending to be nice!


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