Saturday, April 28, 2012

Seroquel, sexual favors and unretracted research papers: Martha Rosenberg asks "Why Are These Fraudulent Papers Unretracted?"

From CounterPunch Why Are These Fraudulent Papers Unretracted? by Martha Rosenberg

Why Are These Fraudulent Papers Unretracted?

"According to Science Times[1], the Tuesday science section in the New York Times, scientific retractions are on the rise because of a “dysfunctional scientific climate” that has created a “winner-take-all game with perverse incentives that lead scientists to cut corners and, in some cases, commit acts of misconduct.”
But elsewhere, audacious, falsified research stands unretracted–including the work of authors who actually went to prison for fraud!
Richard Borison, MD, former psychiatry chief at the Augusta Veterans Affairs medical center and Medical College of Georgia, was sentenced to 15 years in prison for a $10 million clinical trial fraud[2] but his 1996 US Seroquel® Study Group research is unretracted.[3] In fact, it is cited in 173 works and medical textbooks, misleading future medical professionals.[4]
Scott Reuben, MD, the “Bernie Madoff” of medicine who published research on clinical trials that never existed, was sentenced to six months in prison in 2010.[5] But his “research” on popular pain killers like Celebrex and Lyrica is unretracted.[6] If going to prison for research fraud is not enough reason for retraction, what is?
Wayne MacFadden, MD, resigned as US medical director for Seroquel in 2006, after sexual affairs with two coworker women researchers surfaced[7], but the related work is unretracted and was even part of Seroquel’s FDA approval package for bipolar disorder.[8]"
Read the article in its entirety here

CEO David Brennan Quits Under Pressure From Investors 
"While the company would not comment about his retirement package, which is still being finalised, Brennan could walk away with about £5m – after receiving more than £9m in pay, perks and shares last year.
Shares in the group, which also announced a 38% drop in three-month profits to £1.34bn and a reduction in its 2012 earnings target, were the biggest fallers in the FTSE 100, down 6.1% at £26.66, wiping £2.2bn from the company's market value.
Brennan will be replaced temporarily by finance director Simon Lowth from 1 June. Former Volvo boss Leif Johansson will take over as chairman from Louis Schweitzer, 69, on the same day – three months earlier than planned. Johansson will then lead the hunt for a permanent successor to Brennan. Headhunters Spencer Stuart have been hired to scout out internal and external candidates.
Brennan, 58, said he had been contemplating his departure for some time and told the board formally of his intention to quit on Wednesday, following private conversations with the chairman. The board then decided to accelerate the process by appointing Lowth as interim CEO, a move backed by Brennan.
Both Brennan and Schweitzer were reportedly encouraged to retire earlier than planned by non-executive directors on the board. However, Brennan insisted: "The decision to retire was entirely my decision. I've been contemplating it for a while. It was time to give someone else the chance to take the company to the next level."
He said he wanted to spend more time with his family (he is married with four grown-up children and has six grandchildren) and to "figure out ways to influence healthcare from a different position"."