News of the WeekBioethics

Financial Conflicts Get More Scrutiny in Clinical Trials

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Science  25 Aug 2000:
Vol. 289, Issue 5483, pp. 1266-1267
DOI: 10.1126/science.289.5483.1266

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At a national conference on clinical research last week, the incoming head of the federal government's new Office for Human Research Protections, Greg Koski, surprised his audience by suggesting that some conflicts should be avoided. His support for the idea that scientists should have no financial ties to companies whose products they are testing hints at an upcoming shift in government rules that govern the relationship between scientists and the pharmaceutical industry. But most of the discussion at the conference revolved around questions of how to "manage" conflicts rather than do away with them.