Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Tobacco Company Scientist Gained Access To WHO Collaborating Center

Date:
December 22, 2008
Source:
Public Library of Science
Summary:
A new study of previously confidential tobacco industry documents shows that a Philip Morris scientist established close connections with a WHO Collaborating Center in Thailand called the Chulabhorn Research Institute.

A new study of previously confidential tobacco industry documents shows that a Philip Morris scientist established close connections with a WHO Collaborating Centre in Thailand called the Chulabhorn Research Institute (CRI).

Related Articles


The CRI is an internationally renowned teaching institution for a variety of scientific disciplines, including environmental toxicology (the study of how chemicals in the environment, such as tobacco smoke, can affect human health). The institute is designated a WHO Collaborating Centre, carrying out activities in support of the WHO's public health programs.

Ross MacKenzie (School of Public Health, University of Sydney, Australia) and Jeff Collin (Centre for International Public Health Policy, University of Edinburgh, Scotland) analyzed tobacco company documents that were made publicly available online following litigation in the United States. Philip Morris documents revealed that ostensibly independent overseas scientists, now identified as industry consultants, were able to gain access to the Thai scientific community. Most significantly, a Philip Morris scientist called Roger Walk established close connections with the CRI.

Documents indicate that Walk was able to use such links to influence the study and teaching of environmental toxicology in the institute and to develop relations with key officials and local scientists so as to advance the interests of Philip Morris within Thailand and across Asia.

The CRI is headed by Professor Dr Her Royal Highness Princess Chulabhorn, the daughter of the King of Thailand. "While sensitivities surrounding royal patronage of the CRI make public criticism extremely difficult," say MacKenzie and Collin, "indications of ongoing involvement by tobacco industry consultants suggest the need for detailed scrutiny of such relationships."

The link between Philip Morris and the CRI found in this study raises the possibility that the tobacco industry is managing to influence medical research and teaching at an academic institution allied with the WHO. The WHO has stated that a firewall is in place between itself and the tobacco industry—but the study authors argue, based on their findings, that ''this firewall is not impenetrable.''

The study findings, they conclude, highlight a challenge posed to international tobacco control efforts, especially with respect to Article 5.3 of an international treaty called the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. Article 5.3 addresses the need to protect public health policies from the vested interests of the tobacco industry. The authors say that better safeguards must be put in place to prevent tobacco companies from thwarting public health goals.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Public Library of Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. MacKenzie et al. “A Good Personal Scientific Relationship”: Philip Morris Scientists and the Chulabhorn Research Institute, Bangkok. PLoS Medicine, 2008; 5 (12): e238 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.0050238

Cite This Page:

Public Library of Science. "Tobacco Company Scientist Gained Access To WHO Collaborating Center." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 December 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081222221435.htm>.
Public Library of Science. (2008, December 22). Tobacco Company Scientist Gained Access To WHO Collaborating Center. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 3, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081222221435.htm
Public Library of Science. "Tobacco Company Scientist Gained Access To WHO Collaborating Center." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081222221435.htm (accessed March 3, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Treadmill Test Can Predict Chance Of Death Within A Decade

Treadmill Test Can Predict Chance Of Death Within A Decade

Newsy (Mar. 2, 2015) Johns Hopkins researchers analyzed 58,000 heart stress tests to come up with a formula that predicts a person&apos;s chances of dying in the next decade. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Going Gluten-Free Could Get You A Tax Break

Going Gluten-Free Could Get You A Tax Break

Newsy (Mar. 2, 2015) If a doctor advises you to remove gluten from your diet, you could get a tax deduction on the amount you spend on gluten-free foods. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
GlaxoSmithKline and Novartis Try Swapping Success

GlaxoSmithKline and Novartis Try Swapping Success

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 2, 2015) GlaxoSmithKline and Novartis have completed a series of asset swaps worth more than $20 billion. As Grace Pascoe reports they say the deal will reshape both drugmakers. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Can West Africa Rebuild After Ebola?

How Can West Africa Rebuild After Ebola?

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 2, 2015) How best to rebuild the three West African countries struggling with Ebola will be discussed in Brussels this week. As Hayley Platt reports Sierra Leone has the toughest job ahead - its once thriving economy has been ravaged by the disease. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins