Conflicts of interest (COI) in biomedical research are a matter of increasing interest, concern and debate and have led particularly over the last 10 years to a number of studies to analyse the problem and recommendations to avoid it. One of the last and most prominent recommendations is that of the Institute of Medicine in the US, in which COI were defined as follows: “a set of circumstances that creates a risk that professional judgement or actions regarding a primary interest will be unduly influenced by a secondary interest” (1).
conflict of interest
Conflicts of interest between doctors and the pharmaceutical industry are a recurring theme in medical journals and the media. There are two main concerns: