Innovative Medicine Initiative (IMI) Announcement:

On 27 April 2016 IMI officially launched its 9th Call for proposals under IMI 2. It includes a program on “Data quality in preclinical research”, demonstrating a raising awareness amongst all stakeholders that robustness, rigor and validity of research data can be problematic and that there is a “need for simple, sustainable solutions that facilitate data quality without impacting innovation and freedom of research”.

Science Translational Medicine

An incentive-based approach for improving data reproducibility. In this editorial published in Science Translational Medicine, Michael Rosenblatt, Merck’s executive vice president and chief medical officer, states that bad results from academic labs caused pharmaceutical companies waste millions and “threatens the entire biomedical research enterprise”. He suggests an incentive-based approach for improving data reproducibility that is essentially a “full or partial money-back guarantee”. In other words, if research funded by drug companies turns out to be wrong, universities would have to give back the funding they got. Merck thinks this will put the pressure right where it belongs, on the scientists.