Wednesday, June 7, 2006
Per The Scientist, the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine has retracted a 1997 study based on a failure to disclose financial and intellectual contributions from an interested corporate entity, Pacific Gas & Electric, which was at the time defending a products suit based on an alleged chromium-cancer link:
[The journal's editor] Brandt-Rauf began investigating the paper after being alerted by the The Wall Street Journal and Environmental Working Group, a Washington, D.C.-based advocacy group, that the paper was actually compiled and written by employees of a consulting company called ChemRisk, rather than the Chinese physicians JinDong Zhang and ShuKun Li, who were listed as sole authors.
The consultants, ChemRisk, describe themselves as having "a long-standing reputation for thorough scientific analysis and for sharing results in the peer-reviewed scientific literature. Many of the over 200 papers published by scientists in the firm are frequently referenced in both litigation and regulatory decision-making." Their site is worth looking around a bit to get a sense for what they do.
(Shameless plug reminder: My article, forthcoming next year in the Nebraska Law Review, discusses litigation-driven scholarship and discovery into the peer review process.)