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The Irony, Really

An investigation by The Chronicle of Higher Education has found that Thomas Insel, director of the National Institute of Mental Health, helped former Emory University researcher Charles Nemeroff get a job at the University of Miami after Emory dropped him for not disclosing decades of corporate payments. Insel's involvement took place as he was leading the NIH effort to revise and tighten its rules concerning financial conflicts of interest, the Chronicle's Paul Basken adds. Insel even encouraged Nemeroff to apply for new NIH grants, after Emory had agreed to restrict him from NIH availability for two years. To make matters worse, Basken says, "The NIH also allowed Dr. Nemeroff uninterrupted eligibility to serve on NIH advisory panels that help decide who receives NIH grant money." Nemeroff was found to have given speeches or written articles praising drugs made by companies that had paid him, Basken says, rewards which he didn't tell Emory anything about. After he left Emory, a US Senate investigation found Nemeroff was paid $2.8 million by several different drug companies between 2000 and 2007, and failed to disclose at least $1.2 million, Basken adds. When others at NIH expressed concern about Nemeroff's ability to serve on NIH advisory panels, Insel apparently went to bat for him, providing informal recommendations, the Chronicle says.

The Scan

Fertility Fraud Found

Consumer genetic testing has uncovered cases of fertility fraud that are leading to lawsuits, according to USA Today.

Ties Between Vigorous Exercise, ALS in Genetically At-Risk People

Regular strenuous exercise could contribute to motor neuron disease development among those already at genetic risk, Sky News reports.

Test Warning

The Guardian writes that the US regulators have warned against using a rapid COVID-19 test that is a key part of mass testing in the UK.

Science Papers Examine Feedback Mechanism Affecting Xist, Continuous Health Monitoring for Precision Medicine

In Science this week: analysis of cis confinement of the X-inactive specific transcript, and more.