Supporters of diabetes drug had financial ties to pharmaceutical company

Fri, 19 Mar 2010
According to a report from Mayo Clinic, most of the scientists who came out in support of GlaxoSmithKline diabetes drug Avandia were actually financially tied to the pharmaceutical company . The diabetes drug was linked to a far greater than average incidence of heart disease and death in a New England Journal of Medicine article .

The Mayo experts evaluated some 200 articles appearing after the initial diabetes news was published. They found that 90 per cent of the positive articles, commentaries and reviews were by experts with financial ties to Glaxo . The study was published in the British Medical Journal . Just 6 per cent of those who expressed positive opinions of the drug had no funding or fees from the industry .

The researchers were led by Amy Wang, a resident in internal medicine at the Mayo Clinic. She was reported as commenting: "We aimed to determine whether financial conflicts of interest with pharmaceutical manufacturers could be fuelling this fire. From our findings, it appears that the answer is yes. These findings, while not necessarily causal, underscore the need for further progress in reporting in order for the scientific record to be trusted."
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