Citation: Marcovitch H (2005) Little Fish Are Less Likely to Take the Bait. PLoS Med 2(7): e221. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.0020221
Published: July 26, 2005
Copyright: © 2005 Harvey Marcovitch. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Competing interests: HM was Editor of Archives of Disease in Childhood for nine years, and is now Associate Editor for the BMJ. He has no pharmaceutical company sponsorship.
One solution for fair-minded doctors not mentioned by Smith  might be to keep away from major high-impact journals and subscribe instead to those with a lower profile but that serve their specialty. I analysed all original papers published in the last 12 issues of Archives of Disease in Childhood. Of 198 such papers, there were seven (3.5%) manufacturer-funded studies dealing with drugs, vaccines, or infant foods. Another ten papers (5%) dealt with drugs or vaccines, including three reports of adverse events, but were not funded by industry. The funding of one was obscure. This pristine record was somewhat spoiled by a sponsored supplement, but clearly labelled as such, about a particular medication. It provoked an angry correspondence on the subscribers' message board of one of the co-publishers. It seems that at least paediatrics, a far-away specialty of which Smith may know little, treads a careful path.