Embargo Watch

Keeping an eye on how scientific information embargoes affect news coverage

Posts Tagged ‘ingelfinger

Will David Graham’s Avandia study fall victim to the Ingelfinger Rule?

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Last week, an unpublished study by researchers including longtime Avandia critic and FDA reviewer David Graham — who was a well-known Vioxx critic before that — made a bit of a splash after it was leaked to Pharmalot’s Ed Silverman. The study found, Ed reported:

48,000 excess events attributable to Avandia among patients 65 years or older between 1999 and June 2009. And since 62 percent of Avandia use has been among people younger than 65, they estimate the national impact is probably 100,000 or more.

I’ll leave summarizing the findings to Ed, who deserves the kind of traffic this scoop should get. You can also read the manuscript, which the authors were planning to submit to JAMA. According to emails leaked along with the manuscript, they were concerned that the FDA would try to block their submission.

Larry Husten, at Cardiobrief, picked up on the news, and ended his post with this: Read the rest of this entry »


Written by Ivan Oransky

June 16, 2010 at 9:00 am

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Can you tweet from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory meetings?

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In genomics circles, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory’s (CSHL) annual Biology of Genomes meeting is a biggie. It consistently brings together the top players in genomics, and is always oversubscribed.

This year’s meeting, which was no exception, ran from May 11-15. A few days into the meeting, Discover‘s Kat McGowan emailed me. She had been following the many tweets from the meeting eagerly — hashtag #bg2010 — since she couldn’t attend. But she wondered whether all of those tweets violated CSHL’s media policy, which “requires all media attendees to obtain permission in advance from the relevant scientist prior to reporting any spoken or printed information gleaned from the meetings.”

That sounded like a good question to me, so I contacted CSHL’s media office, who put me in touch with executive director of courses and meetings David Stewart. David runs at least 50 such courses and meetings every year. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

May 24, 2010 at 9:00 am

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Can a journal — Nature — Ingelfinger itself?

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courtesy Nature

Last week, on Twitter, Chris Gunter — who calls herself a “recovering Nature editor” — pointed me in the direction of a few Nature items she thought I would find of interest because of an embargo angle. Konrad Hochedlinger and some of his colleagues had published a paper in Nature about a genetic flaw in reprogrammed stem cells — a flaw that had been reported in a Nature news story several weeks earlier based on a conference presentation at the New York Academy of Sciences.

The fact that Nature published the study even after someone had reported on it seemed like a refreshing interpretation of the Ingelfinger Rule, about which I’ve written before. Basically, the rule, named for the New England Journal of Medicine editor who codified it, says that for a journal to publish a study, its results can’t have appeared elsewhere, with the exception of limited conference presentations.

The appearance of the Hochedlinger paper was refreshing because some reporters have complained bitterly about the Ingelfinger Rule, saying that it stifles communication and makes scientists afraid to speak to reporters. But here was a case in which the journal, which clearly knew about the news story, was happy to publish the study anyway.

Still, I wondered if Nature would still have published the paper if another news outlet had published on this before publication in the journal. And was Hochedlinger’s team still under embargo between March 31, when the Nature story appeared, and April 25? Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

May 3, 2010 at 9:00 am

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A surgery trade newspaper gets Ingelfingered

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Last fall, a researcher presented her work at a surgery conference, and a reporter for General Surgery News decided the study was worth a story.

Soon afterward, the reporter submitted the story to General Surgery News editor Kevin Horty. In the meantime, the researcher had contacted the journal where she’d submitted the work, to make sure that a General Surgery News story wouldn’t be considered “prior publication” and jeopardize her ability to publish the paper.

(A note: I’m keeping this story deliberately vague to protect Kevin’s scoop. Presuming the study is published, I’ll do a follow-up.)

Sorry, the journal responded, it would: A few months had passed, the presentation was no longer news, and that the story would be considered prior publication because it would contain material that wasn’t in the conference abstract. The researcher shared that with the reporter, who shared it with Kevin.

General Surgery News had just been Ingelfingered. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Ivan Oransky

March 5, 2010 at 9:15 am

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