e-Cigarette Maker Buys Up Entire Scientific Health Journal Edition for $51K: Conflict of Interest or Good Business?

e-Cigarette Maker Buys Up Entire Scientific Health Journal Edition for $51K: Conflict of Interest or Good Business?

Are academic medical, scientific, and health journals becoming “coin-operated?” In a recent special edition of the American Journal of Health Behavior (AJHB), the journal published 11 articles focusing on the e-cigarette manufacturer Juul Labs’ and its efforts to secure U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval for its product. More specifically, the company worked with a consulting firm and a research center while purchasing an entire special edition of AJHB while it awaited FDA ruling on whether its products evidence health benefits. That’s right—the journal is for sale to the highest bidder. In this case, $51K buys an entire edition! But this shouldn't surprise anyone in scientific or medical research. These journals are expensive to run and operate, and there’s a growing trend of big pharmaceutical companies influencing the overall market for research publishing, and thus mindshare of the greater community, and ultimately markets themselves.  

TrialSite recommends readers visit Ryan Basen’s piece in MedPage Today for a good overview of how some of these deals may actually work. In this case, the San Francisco-based e-cigarette maker was able to purchase an entire spe...

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