Cancer Research For 10 Yrs Useless: Fraud, Says Mayo Clinic
Submitted by Lois Rain on August 14, 2011
Cancer Research of 10
Years Useless: Fraudulent Studies, Says Mayo Clinic
JAMA's editor calls
fraudulent medical research a 'scar on the moral body of science'. But it's
really just part of an entire system of fraud in medicine. Medical science is
rampant with fraud. At the Mayo Clinic, ten years of research that appeared
to be leading towards harnessing the immune system to fight cancer is
worthless because of fraudulent studies and later research based on the
Retraction of medical research papers is at an
all-time high. Though error was cited at a 3 to 1 rate over fraud, one must
seriously question whether simple error is the primary reason. After all,
these studies are peer-reviewed. They are supposed to have passed rigorous
examination. But, what's the reality?
Of course, as Gaia Health
readers have seen over and over, the reality is that flaws in much of
medical research are blatant. Often, merely examining a study, instead of
taking it at face value, demonstrates that the conclusions are not supported
by the evidence.
Nonetheless, those same studies are cited as
evidence of efficacy of drugs and procedures. Even after papers have been
retracted, the impression they've given doesn't disappear. Research based on
those papers is already designed and in process.
Doctors are loathe to change their practices on the basis of bad studies.
are made more readily as new drugs and procedures are advocated, not as old
ones are discredited. Just take a look at doctors' continuing to prescribe bisphonates for the nonexistent disease, osteopenia (pre-osteoporosis), and
hormone replacement therapy for another nonexistent disease, menopause--or
even the routine prescribing of fever-reducing drugs, which is nearly always
Does Better Error Detection Explain the Retractions?
Some medical journals are claiming that they're better at detecting
errors, implying that there really isn't an increase in fraudulent papers.
That explanation simply doesn't hold up to scrutiny. They offer no
explanation as to what might make them better at detecting errors now. In
other words, the august journals are basing the claim on absolutely nothing
but wishful thinking.
Worse, some are claiming that the advent of
plagiarism software explains it. But how does finding plagiarism in papers
explain fraudulent studies?
The simple fact is that they're finding
more fraudulent studies because they're actually looking for them. And not
as a result of their own internal reviews, but because of fraud scandals
that reached mainstream media.
Why So Much Fraud in Medical Studies?
There is a
tremendous amount to be gained by getting away with fraud in medical
studies. The reason is simple. According to Richard Horton, editor of The
A single paper in Lancet and you get your chair and you get your money.
It's your passport to success.
It's all about money. Get published in a major medical journal and your
future is made. Most peer reviewers are doing their own studies. That's what
makes them peers. They want to be able to publish. Therefore, they are not
particularly inclined to make more than perfunctory negative comments.
Obviously, they don't want to alienate the authors of papers, since they
either are or hope to become published themselves.
Peer review is a
farce. The only kind of review that makes real sense is professional
independent reviewers. Yet, for decades we've had peer review trotted out as
the be-all and end-all in determining the legitimacy of papers. It's been
unquestioned, while a little examination of the concept demonstrates that
it's nearly certain to result in fraudulent work being passed as good
Fraud Is a Scar on Science
Richard Horton says
that this fraud 'is a scar on the moral body of science.' That's certainly
true. How many patients have been harmed? We'll likely never know, as these
Vioxx, the pain medication that causes heart attacks.
The deeply flawed statin studies that hide the adverse effects, not to
mention lack of efficacy.
The antidepressant and antipsychotic
studies that have hidden adverse effects and lack of efficacy, too.
The misguided studies on salt that continue to claim that lower salt intake
needs to pushed, when the opposite is probably true. In most people, there
is a direct relationship between salt intake and death rates. The lower the
salt intake, the greater the death rate, as demonstrated by
a good study published in JAMA.
Even the system that's supposed
to control fraud in studies before they ever reach the stage of publication
is corrupt, as documented in
this sting operation. The fraud is systemic, from the start of drug
trials that are financed directly and indirectly by Big Pharma, to the
competition among researchers hoping to make their first million, to the
journals that accept the fraudulent reports, using an obviously biased
system of peer review to hide behind and financed almost totally by Big
Pharma ads, to the doctors who choose to blindly accept whatever the journal
reports say because it's easy, gives them cover, and also brings patients to
Signifying the Inherent Corruption in Conventional Medicine
Yes, this is the system of evidence that conventional medicine claims
justifies its existence. Instead, it demonstrates that conventional medicine
is anything but evidence-based. There is no sound basis for most of modern
medicine's treatments, as should certainly be obvious with the constantly
increasing rate of chronic disease.
Take a look at the advent of drug
resistant diseases, which are growing rampant and often far more virulent.
Or look at the false claims of disease eradication through vaccines, when
any rational look at the evidence shows that it's not modern medicine we
need to thank, but adequate food, good water, and good sanitation systems.
Consider the advent of a new kind of whooping cough,
10 times more virulent than the old version and caused by the vaccine
itself, while being blamed on the unvaccinated!
Even when there has
been apparent success, we often find that it's short-lived and has presented
us with worse problems than the ones apparently resolved.
We are, indeed,
entering a brave new world of conventional medicine. Unfortunately, the ones
who need to be brave are the patients, because they're going to need every
bit of resource and resilience they can find to avoid being little more than
recipients of whatever modern medicine's pseudo-science manages to spew
While Dr. Horton's comment about fraudulent studies being a
'scar on the moral body of science' is true, the whole truth is far more
disheartening. The entire system of conventional medicine has become a scar
on the psyche and soma of humans.
By Heidi Stevenson