Ex-editor says med journals dance to pharmaceutical companies' tune

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Dr. Richard Smith, who edited the British Medical Journal for 13 years, tells the BBC:

"For a drug company a favourable trial is worth thousands of pages of advertising, which is why a company will sometimes spend upwards of a million dollars on reprints of the trial for worldwide distribution...

"Fortunately from the point of view of the companies which fund these trials - but unfortunately for the credibility of the journals who publish them - they rarely produce results that are unfavourable to the companies' products.... An editor may thus face a frighteningly stark conflict of interest - publish a trial that will bring in $100,000 of profit, or meet the end of year budget by firing an editor." 

Read the BBC story.

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