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Commentary

Avandia-type crisis could hit other drugs
Reuters News, 6-4-07

In this interview with Fred Hassan, CEO of Schering–Plough, Hassan argues that data transparency on the web is leading to an explosion of "questionable third party analysis."

Hassan, who is also president of the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations, said the decision by companies to post their clinical trial results on the Internet increased the scope for sometimes questionable third-party analysis.

"This was always a concern, and unfortunately it's now being borne out," he said in a telephone interview. "This kind of thing could happen to many, many other drugs as well."

The world's leading pharmaceutical companies, responding to widespread demands for greater openness, recently started posting most clinical studies on a series of Web sites. Hassan said the move was good for transparency but increased the risk of potentially misleading analysis, including the pooling of results of various studies in what is known as meta analysis, which was always "very dangerous territory".



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