Secretive Sponsors: Prepare for the Wall of Shame

Few clinical trial sponsors are complying with a US government push to publish results in a federal database, a Science investigation of 4,700 trials reveals.

30 out of 184 institutional sponsors in one group missed all reporting deadlines—flouting a 2007 law promising stiff penalties for violators.

Missing or late results could include lifesaving information. After years of government inaction, the NIH is now threatening, for the first time, to publicly flag violations and rescind funding.

“I don’t think anybody wants to be on the wall of shame,” says NIH Director Francis Collins. “It’s hard to herd cats, but you can … take their food away,” he says.

Science

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