The Bigger Picture: Industry Sponsored Research and Negative Trials


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This week’s Rounds Table is all about studying studies, emphasizing the importance of understanding a body of evidence within the context of existing literature. A refreshing reminder that the “big picture” in medical research can be easy to lose sight of when keeping up to date with individual trials!

Dr. Ashley Minuk, Family Physician at Trenton Memorial Hospital, leads the discussion on a narrative case study of a historical analysis of internal industry documents related to the sugar industry and its role in CHD research. It’s exactly what it sounds like – a peek into the Sugar Research Foundation’s diary that exposes their dirty little secrets! Kieran and Ashley discuss implications in the broader context of bias in industry sponsored research.

There wouldn’t be The Rounds Table without the regular publishing of exciting research in major medical journals. Negative trials aren’t often labelled as exciting; however, the results of these trials can be hugely important in shaping clinical practice. Kieran leads the discussion on an important study that compares the rates of reporting negative findings in cardiovascular trials before and after the year 2000.

A lighthearted end to a serious episode: who won the Ig Nobel Prize for Medicine? What exactly is ‘Precision Oncology?’ Listen to the Good Stuff segment to find out!

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The Papers

1. Sugar and CHD: http://archinte.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=2548255

2. Negative CAD Trials: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0132382

Good Stuff

1. Ig Nobel Prize: http://www.improbable.com/ig/winners/, scroll down to ‘Medicine’

2. Precision oncology: http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v537/n7619_supp/full/537S63a.html

Music Credits (Creative Commons)

In your Robotic Heart – Nicolai Heidlas https://soundcloud.com/nicolai-heidlas/in-your-robotic-heart

Drive – Nicolai Heidlas https://soundcloud.com/nicolai-heidlas/drive-fresh-upbeat-pop-background-music

Vintage Dream – Nicolai Heidlas https://soundcloud.com/nicolai-heidlas/vintage-dream-loungejazzy-background-music

All tracks have been modified for the purposes of this podcast.

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