Positive results more likely from industry-funded breast cancer trials

Armen Hareyan's picture
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Breast Cancer Research

Industry-funded studies of breast cancer therapies are more likely to report positive results than non-pharmaceutical funded studies, researchers from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the Dana Farber Cancer Institute have found. In addition, significant differences exist in the design and nature of clinical trials supported by the pharmaceutical industry compared to trials without industry involvement.

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Published online Feb. 26 in CANCER, the journal of the American Cancer Society, the study explores the impact of pharmaceutical-company involvement on breast cancer clinical trial design and outcome. Drug-industry investment in research now exceeds the operating budget of the National Institutes of Health and previous studies have examined the impact on other areas of clinical medicine, but not breast cancer.

"Our study shines a flashlight on the issue of the rising role and potential impact of the pharmaceutical industry on breast cancer research and highlights important questions that need to be addressed through further research," said Dr. Jeffrey Peppercorn, assistant professor of medicine in UNC School of Medicine's division of hematology and oncology and a member of the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center.

"The significance of our study is not to say that the drug industry does anything wrong

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