The Autism Speaks Baby Sibs Research Consortium, aka Everything that is Wrong with Autism Research
The Atlantic: The Wonder Drug Myth

Corporate Funding of Scientific Studies: Not for Tobacco, Not at PLoS

PLoS and NYT vs. Money; FDA vs. Flavor; Hype(r)tension

By Curtis Porter

Medical Journal Gives Up on Evaluating Science

Today the editorial staff of PLoS Medicine, a peer reviewed, open access journal published by the Public Library of Science, declared, “While we continue to be interested in analyses of ways of reducing tobacco use, we will no longer be considering papers where support, in whole or in part, for the study or the researchers comes from a tobacco company.”

“By deciding to no longer allow for research funded in any part by tobacco industry, they're acknowledging that they're no longer able to evaluate science,” says ACSH's Jeff Stier. “It is the very role of journals to discern between good and bad science, and they're throwing their hands up in the air and saying, 'We can't do it.' It's a regression of scientific standards that journals can no longer trust themselves to evaluate science.”

The editorial offers the justification for this decision: “As a medical journal we do this for two reasons. First, tobacco is indisputably bad for health...Second, we remain concerned about the industry's longstanding attempts to distort the science of and deflect attention away from the harmful effects of smoking.”

“It's true that tobacco companies knowingly deceived their customers for many years,” says ACSH's Dr. Gilbert Ross. “We can name a few activist groups funded by other interests that have also distorted science to suit their agenda. Still, it's the twenty-first century now, and there are many tobacco products - be they smokeless tobacco or lozenges - that may be used to help people quit smoking. Who but the tobacco industry that produces these alternatives is going to fund research concerning their safety and efficacy? And while smoking is decidedly bad for anyone's health, are the PLoS editors going to ban research supported by other disfavored industries - beverages, pharmaceuticals, who knows what others? - in the near future?”  Read the full article HERE.



Jake is quite right about ACSH. Not a legitimate scientific organization, nor a legitimate consumer organization.

Jake Crosby

Uh...why the HELL are we posting and linking to an article published by the ACSH? They're a total front group for industry, they just play up their supposed anti-Tobacco stance to give the veneer of scientific legitimacy.


Tobacco didn't have as much influence on medical research regarding causation, either, although I think they did their best.

A Mom

So many similarities. Thankfully, the tobacco industry didn't have the strangle-hold on the media that the pharmaceutical industry has.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)