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September 13, 2000

Efficacy of Glucosamine and Chondroitin for Treatment of Osteoarthritis

Author Affiliations

Stephen J.LurieMD, PhD, Senior EditorIndividualAuthorPhil B.FontanarosaMD, Executive Deputy EditorIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 2000;284(10):1241. doi:10.1001/jama.284.10.1239

To the Editor: In their meta-analysis of randomized, placebo-controlled trials, Dr McAlindon and colleagues1 report that both glucosamine sulfate (GS) and chondroitin sulfate (CS) are likely to be effective therapies for the symptomatic treatment of osteoarthritis (OA). However, they also assert that the symptomatic benefit may be less than predicted because of methodological flaws and probable publication bias. As representatives of one of the major European manufacturers of highly purified CS, we wish to point out that the clinical development of such agents requires great financial investment. Therefore, without the support of pharmaceutical industries, it would be almost impossible for physicians and researchers to investigate the clinical effect of any active principle. Publication is the last step for a researcher, who is responsible for content and quality of the results. Therefore, we disagree that supported clinical trials are necessarily associated with publication bias.

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