News Roundup [abridged Versions Appear In The Paper Journal]

Editor claims drug companies have a “parasitic” relationship with journals

BMJ 2004; 330 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.330.7481.9 (Published 30 December 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;330:9
  1. Lynn Eaton
  1. London

    The relationship between medical journals and the drug industry is “somewhere between symbiotic and parasitic,” according to the editor of the Lancet, Richard Horton. But at the moment it has swung too much towards the parasitic, he told the House Commons select committee on health last month in his oral evidence on the role of the industry.

    He outlined some of the financial incentives that could, potentially, influence a commercially run medical journal to publish a paper. Many of the formal research papers in the Lancet are reprinted and bought in bulk by drug companies, which use them for marketing purposes, he explained. The drug companies regularly try to exert pressure on the journal to run a paper by arguing that, if the journal does …

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