“Highly publicized cases of fabrication or falsification of data in clinical trials have occurred in recent years and it is likely that there are additional undetected or unreported cases. We review the available evidence on the incidence of data fraud in clinical trials, describe several prominent cases, present information on motivation and contributing factors and discuss cost-effective ways of early detection of data fraud as part of routine central statistical monitoring of data quality. Adoption of these clinical trial monitoring procedures can identify potential data fraud not detected by conventional on-site monitoring and can improve overall data quality.”
“New England Journal of Medicine: Nearly 64% Reduced Their Blood Pressure to Healthy Levels After Barbers Promoted Follow-Up With Pharmacists in the Barbershops.
“African-American men lowered their high blood pressure to healthy levels when aided by a pharmacist and their barber, according to a new study from the Smidt Heart Institute.”
The New York Times: The Age That Women Have Babies: How a Gap Divides America by Quoctrunk Bui and Claire Cain Miller
“The 1906 pure food and drug act was set up to protect US citizens from unregulated and potentially harmful products. Implementing the regulation has presented the US Food and Drug Administration with many high-profile challenges, as Fiona Case finds out.”
Chemistry World: 100 years of the FDA (2006) by Fiona Case
“How not to collaborate with a biostatistician. This is what happens when two people are speaking different research languages! My current workplace is nothing like this, but I think most biostatisticians have had some kind of similar experiences like this in the past!”
YouTube: Biostatistics vs. Lab Research by JavaMama926
Blood on the Tracks – Podcast Episode 38
Learn about a piece of epidemiological history: one of the earliest examples of population-level clinical studies influencing medical practice. This podcast tells the story of how French physician Pierre Charles Alexandre Louis studied a group of patients and ended up discovering quantitative evidence on the detriment of bloodletting. Learning the history helps place these tools in a broader context, which isn’t crucial, but interesting nonetheless.
The first population study in history was born out of a dramatic debate involving leeches, “medical vampires,” professional rivalries, murder accusations, and, of course, bloodletting, all in the backdrop of the French Revolution. The second of a multipart series on the development of population medicine, this episode contextualizes Pierre Louis’ “numerical method,” his famous trial on bloodletting, and the birth of a new way for doctors to “know”.
Ronald Bayer, Ph.D., and Sandro Galea, M.D., Dr.P.H.
“The NIH’s most recent Estimates of Funding for Various Research, Condition, and Disease Categories report (www.report.nih.gov/categorical_spending.aspx) shows, for example, that total support in fiscal year 2014 for research areas including the words ‘gene,’ ‘genome,’ or ‘genetic’ was about 50% greater than funding for areas including the word ‘prevention.’…The proportion of NIH-funded projects with the words ‘public’ or ‘population’ in their title, for example, has dropped by 90% over the past 10 years, according to the NIH Reporter.”
“Without minimizing the possible gains to clinical care from greater realization of precision medicine’s promise, we worry that an unstinting focus on precision medicine by trusted spokespeople for health is a mistake — and a distraction from the goal of producing a healthier population.”
NEJM: Public Health in the Precision-Medicine Era by Ronald Bayer, Ph.D., and Sandro Galea, M.D., Dr.P.H.
“The fall of a prominent behavioral scientist tells of a system where research is judged not on merit, but on the attention it gets.”
“…remember that science is about asking questions, not pursuing answers.”
-James Hamblin, MD
The Atlantic: A Credibility Crisis in Food Science