I just ran across an editorial, Preserving Intellectual Freedom in Clinical Medicine, from Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics that was posted last October. Giovanni A. Fava raises a number of issues in the piece, some of which are quite familiar to us, such as the role of corporate interests in medical research. He cites one study that found that of 74 FDA registered trials of antidepressants, 37 of 38 trials with positive results were published, but only 3 of the 36 trials with negative results saw the light of day.
There has been much publicity of the way drug companies consciously and unconsciously exert influence over research and publication. What made this editorial stand out was his claim that open access publishing also can negatively impact intellectual freedom in the life sciences. As more and more journals move to an author pays open access model, independent researchers who don’t have the leverage of large grants to help pay these fees are forced to publish in journals whose content becomes harder to find in our current state of information glut.
Interesting claim. Anyone?
– Dan Lee