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New Rules: Oct 1, 2009

The industry trade group PhRMA has new clinical trial guidelines that take effect today, reports the Wall Street Journal Health Blog. The new rules discourage ghostwriting — "authors should identify individuals who provide writing or other assistance and disclose the funding source for this assistance" — and says that doctors who have a financial stake in a drug should not be involved in a clinical trial of that drug. The guidelines also say that drug companies should post summaries of clinical trial results. However, as the Health Blog says, there is a "big grain of salt" — all the guidelines are voluntary.

The Scan

Study Finds Sorghum Genetic Loci Influencing Composition, Function of Human Gut Microbes

Focusing on microbes found in the human gut microbiome, researchers in Nature Communications identified 10 sorghum loci that appear to influence the microbial taxa or microbial metabolite features.

Treatment Costs May Not Coincide With R&D Investment, Study Suggests

Researchers in JAMA Network Open did not find an association between ultimate treatment costs and investments in a drug when they analyzed available data on 60 approved drugs.

Sleep-Related Variants Show Low Penetrance in Large Population Analysis

A limited number of variants had documented sleep effects in an investigation in PLOS Genetics of 10 genes with reported sleep ties in nearly 192,000 participants in four population studies.

Researchers Develop Polygenic Risk Scores for Dozens of Disease-Related Exposures

With genetic data from two large population cohorts and summary statistics from prior genome-wide association studies, researchers came up with 27 exposure polygenic risk scores in the American Journal of Human Genetics.