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C. Radhakrishnan, M. E. Collins, C. M. Southard, J. Chang, M. A. Saidel; Variations in Conflict of Interest Disclosures: An Analysis of ARVO 2007 Meeting Abstract Submissions. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2008;49(13):5000.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
To describe variations in the disclosure of commercial affiliations by authors listed on more than one abstract at the 2007 annual Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) meeting.
A review of commercial disclosures from a subset of individuals who were listed as an author on one or more abstracts at the 2007 ARVO annual meeting was performed. Data was collected using the ARVO 2007 Commercial Relationships Index and Author Index. For a random sample of 4413 authors, we determined whether the authors disclosed a commercial interest on each abstract and, if the authors were listed on multiple abstracts, whether they consistently disclosed their commercial interests.
4413 authors were reviewed. Of those, 1230 individuals were listed as authors on two or more abstracts. 1051 individuals (85%) did not disclose commercial interests on any abstract; 179 (15%) individuals disclosed commercial interests on one or more abstracts. 32/179 (18%) authors disclosing commercial interests were consistent in their reporting of commercial interests (i.e. the same commercial interests were disclosed in each study abstract). 147/179 (82%) authors did not consistently disclose commercial interests in their abstracts.
Conflicts of interest are prevalent in the scientific community. A significant percentage of studies submitted to ARVO report at least one financial relationship in the ARVO Commercial Relationship Index. This study highlights significant variation in commercial interest reporting practices for authors. 12% (147/1230) of authors listed on more than one study did not consistently disclose their financial relationships in the subset we examined. This raises concerns for underreporting of commercial interests and potential conflicts of interest. For this reason, we recommend changing disclosure policy so that each individual must disclose all commercial interests for each study in which (s)he is involved.
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