March 5, 2001
Martin to explore
By Eric Rangus firstname.lastname@example.org
Harvards Joseph Martin will present his lecture, Academic-Industrial
Relationships: Measuring Opportunities and Assessing Conflicts,
Wednesday, March 14, at 4 p.m. in WHSCAB Auditorium.
The monetary backing of corporations and industry has been a boon for
medical research. However, with all that money floating aroundand
the increased visibility of for-profit entities affecting researchthe
potential for conflict of interest in researchers has become a major issue.
According to Martin, dean of the faculty of medicine at Harvards
Medical School, current mechanisms of technology transfer are often ineffective.
New models for managing these opportunities must be developed, and they
must ensure adequate conflict-of-interest management.
While academic-industry collaborations are essential if patients
are to benefit from the current biomedical revolution, Martin said,
the integrity of those relationships must be monitored by policies
that are clearer and more stringent than is the norm today.
For instance, according to Martin, just 1 percent of academic institutions
require disclosure of financial interests to the review boards that approve
In early February, Martin organized a group of prominent leaders in academic
medicine who drafted a set of guidelines for dealing with financial conflicts
of interest that can arise from faculty/industry collaborations.
Some of the groups proposals include: disclosure of financial interest
to review boards, disclosure of financial ties to anyone involved in research,
applying a higher standard to clinical research than for basic laboratory
research, and requiring financial disclosure to journals considering publishing
The work sprung from a series of articles written by group members that
appeared in November in the Journal of the American Medical Association
and the New England Journal of Medicine.
Martin began his career in academic medicine at McGill University in
Montreal, where he became chair of neurology and neurosurgery. He then
joined the faculty of Harvard Medical School, was dean of the School of
Medicine at University of CaliforniaSan Francisco and served as
UCSF chancellor for four years before returning to Harvard.
An author of more than 300 scientific articles and reviews, Martin is
one of the editors of Harrisons Principles of Internal Medicine
and has served on the editorial boards of the New England Journal of Medicine,
Annals of Neurology and Science.
The event will be broadcast on Emory broadband channel 57 (VAMC channel
26) and will be shown in Grady Hospitals Steiner Auditorium and
in Hospital Education 170C, classroom 1, Candler Building, Crawford Long.
The lecture also will be webcast at www.emory.edu/WHSC/HSNEWS/futuremakers/lecture_series.html.