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Public Inquiry
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Pharmaceutical industry and psychiatrists manipulate their publications

category international | rights, freedoms and repression | news report author Tuesday October 23, 2012 22:42author by Consuelo Report this post to the editors

The Ross article includes a review of companies in the business of medical writing, including Scientific Therapeutics of New York. Ross’s research uncovered one of their memos to Merck dated 1999 in which the status of eight separate reports was mentioned.

One of those eight reports was targeted for publication in JAMA. When it was completed, it was indeed published in JAMA in January 2002. At publication, the paper listed two outside academic physicians acting as co-principal investigators and the lead author was identified as a Merck employee. There was no mention of the role Scientific Therapeutics played in writing the paper.
The JAMA editorial notes that editors of these journals bear some responsibility by allowing companies, such as Merck, to manipulate their publications.
Putting Merck in even more hot water is a second article in Wednesday’s JAMA that is based on some of the same documents Ross reviewed. Written by Drs. Bruce Psaty and Richard A. Kronmal, both of the University of Washington, the paper claims Merck was not fully candid when submitting data for review by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) during the time before Vioxx was recalled.
Calling the Psaty/Kronmal analysis misleading, Merck says the FDA knew of cardiovascular risks linked to Vioxx and was involved with on-going discussion of the matter with Merck.
Source: NYT

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