Analysis of reports quantitatively comparing food-industry sponsored studies


Researchers in Australia analyzed medical literature to determine whether nutrition studies sponsored by the food industry were associated with outcomes favorable to the sponsor.

The review and meta-analysis by Lisa A. Bero, Ph.D., of the University of Sydney, Australia, and coauthors suggests – but cannot establish — that industry-sponsored studies may be more likely to have conclusions favorable to the industry than non-industry sponsored studies but the difference was not statistically significant.

The report also concluded there was insufficient evidence to assess the quantitative effect of industry sponsorship on the results and quality of nutrition research.

"These findings suggest but do not establish that industry sponsorship of nutrition studies is associated with conclusions that favor the sponsors, and further investigation of differences in study results and quality is needed," the authors report.


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(JAMA Intern Med. Published online October 31, 2016. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2016.6721. Available pre-embargo to the media at

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Lisa A. Bero, Ph.D.
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