That Fishy Smell In The Psychiatry Department

Remember Charles Nemeroff, I wrote about him awhile back. Well, the plot thickens…

Dr. Nemeroff, after the senate committee chaired by Senator Grassley found he had been deceptive as to the extent of his funding by the drug industry, was fired by the Emory University only to be picked up by the University of Miami.

Dr. Nemeroff had been subjected to a 2 year ban by Emory University from applying for funds from the National Institute of Health. Apparently this ban only applied to Emory University because Nemeroff was pretty easily able to find his way around it, with the help of Thomas Insel, the director of the National Institute of Mental Health.

Later it was discovered that Dr. Insel, much to his chagrin and embarrassment, had helped land Dr. Nemeroff his jobs at both Emory University and the University of Miami.

This kind of mischief rekindled the interests of Senator Grassley.

A former faculty member from Emory University within their department of Psychiatry just got a letter to the editor on Dr. Nemeroff in the Miami Herald.

University of Miami’s bad hire
Letters to the Editor
Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Re the June 10 story Senator tells UM he’s `troubled’ over hiring: The University of Miami has hired a chairman for the Department of Psychiatry, Dr. Charles Nemeroff, who has become the poster child for what’s wrong with academic medicine in our country.

Nemeroff was relieved of his chairmanship at Emory University in Atlanta for failing to disclose conflicts of interest in his publications and presentations. That means that he was a well-paid frontman for a number of drug manufacturers.

Now it has been revealed that many of his articles were ghost-written by the drug companies and that he recommended a drug, Paxil, as safe for pregnant women when, in fact, it can cause congenital heart defects in newborns.

One has to wonder what the people at UM are thinking? Or if they’re thinking at all?

Former faculty member
Department of Psychiatry
Emory University
Jasper, Ga.

If I remember correctly, I said something very similar about the University of Miami’s hiring practices immediately after Dr. Nemeroff was picked up by them. The question then arises, should Florida become better known for taking in the trash other states throw off? I certainly hope not anyway.

I think there must be an awfully lot of red faces down on the southern end of the peninsula about now, and that redness is not exclusively sunburn.