JAMA paper on spin in published studies

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“The reporting and interpretation of findings was frequently inconsistent with the results.”

That’s the conclusion of a study published in this week’s JAMA.

Spin that however you want, it adds to the growing evidence, as the paper notes of:

• a positive relation between financial ties and favorable conclusions stated in trial reports.

• discrepancies between results and their interpretation in the Conclusions sections of published papers.
• for-profit funding of meta-analyses associated with favorable conclusions but not favorable results.
• the Discussion sections of articles often lacked a discussion of limitations.

About 20 months ago, MedPageToday.com reported on more of this work reviewing spinning of trial results.

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Sharon Kramer

June 1, 2010 at 1:45 pm

I found your cite via GoozNews. Excellent information. I have a degree in marketing and have been tracking the spin over the mold issue for about five years. It has been so pervasive that the University of California’s name has been on a US Chamber of Commerce publication that makes the statement all claims of illness from the toxic components of mold have been scientifically proven to only be made because of “trial lawyers, media, and junk science” – and no one will do a damn thing about the conflicts of interest from this situation.
Below is a link to a letter recently sent to the Regents of the UC as this Chamber publication is now a legal document being used to deny insurer liability for the death of two new born infants – with the UC name applied in implied endorsement. The letter was sent from physicians, scientists, etc.
And below is a link to a WSJ article of 2007, describing how the UC physician that is the “causative agent” of why the UC name is on the US Chamber publication in the first place, serves as a prolific expert defense witness over the matter.
What is NOT in the WSJ article is the little discussed fact that when employees of universities serve as expert witnesses in court, the monies actually go to the universities with the employee receiving only a percentage. Nationwide, the monies involved in the expert witnessing on behalf of industry by university affiliates serves as a tremendous source of income for the universities, including the UC.
With regard to environmental illnesses, the conflict of interest is blatant and pervasive. This is because universities often times receive federal funding to advance the understanding of certain environmental illnesses, while simultaneously generating income via expert witness fees denying industries (insurer) liability for causation of the exact same illnesses. I call these expert witness fees “Do Not Research” grants.
Something really needs to change over this arrangement. It is detrimental to the health and safety of the public.