On very rare occasions, no interest is declared. In most cases the researchers are in the employ of, or enjoyed some privileges from, the sponsor whose drug is being researched.
And in a few cases, the interests being declared are so numerous that they read more like the end credits from a Hollywood movie, as happened this week in the New England Journal of Medicine.
So, lights, cameras, and roll those credits. . .
"Supported by grants from the Cancer Research Campaign (now Cancer Research UK) and Pharmacia (now Pfizer); Pharmacia also provided epirubicin at a discount. Dr. Poole reports having received consulting fees and lecture fees from Eli Lilly, Pfizer, Amgen UK, Sanofi-Aventis, Roche, AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, Fulcrum Pharma, and Bristol-Myers Squibb; consulting fees from Novartis; and grant support from Pfizer and Cancer Research UK. Dr. Earl reports having received consulting fees from Pfizer, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and Amgen UK; and grant support from Cancer Research UK and Eli Lilly. Dr. Dunn reports having received grant support from Cancer Research UK, Pfizer, and Merck. Drs. Agrawal, Brunt, Rea, Earl, and Mansi report having received consulting fees from AstraZeneca. Dr. Fernando reports having received grant support from Cancer Research UK. Drs. Brunt, Rea, and McAdam report having received consulting fees from Roche. Dr. O'Reilly reports having served on advisory boards for Sanofi-Aventis and Novartis and having received lecture fees from AstraZeneca, Sanofi-Aventis, and Novartis. Dr. Rea reports having received consulting fees from Pfizer, Novartis, and GlaxoSmithKline; and grant support from Pfizer and Novartis. Mr. Stanley reports having received consulting fees from Westaway Gillis, Roche, and Amgen; and lecture fees from Aventis. Dr. Leonard reports having received consulting fees and lecture fees from Pfizer, Amgen, and Roche; consulting fees from Sanofi-Aventis; lecture fees from Bioenvision; and grant support from Amgen, European Union, and Cancer Research UK. Dr. Twelves reports having received consulting fees from Chugai and Aventis; and consulting and lecture fees from Roche. No other potential conflict of interest relevant to this article was reported."
And presumably no animal was harmed in the making of the research paper.
For its part, WDDTY should like to thank: Mr Tony Edwards, A. Edwards, Tony, Edwards, 'Tone', Anthony, 'Are you sure you sent the cheque out first class' Edwards, 'Our Tone', Tone Baby, and 'Is that a lancet you have in your hand, or are you pleased to see me' Edwards for their contribution. No other person was involved in the contribution of this article.
(Source: New England Journal of Medicine, 2006; 355: 1851-62).
E-news broadcast 2 November 2006 No.306 [Subscribe]