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April 1989

Release of Scientific Information to the News Media

Author Affiliations

Winston-Salem, NC

Arch Ophthalmol. 1989;107(4):485. doi:10.1001/archopht.1989.01070010499003

To the Editor.  —The editorial by Fishman, in the Archives1 in which he pontificates on the wisdom of "releasing research information" to the press for public consumption before its appearance in peer-reviewed journals was right on target in most respects. Indeed, publicity about any accomplishment (even pronouncements on ethical and social responsibility) can be self-serving at a very basic level. And yes, research scientists and the practicing medical community should not create premature therapeutic scenarios that might lead to false hopes in those persons tragically afflicted with a disease even remotely related to the medical and/or scientific news release in question.However, in his pointed allegation that the researchers he cited, and who had been involved in the retinal pigment epithelial cell transplantation in the Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) rat, had abrogated their "social responsibilities" by being the subject, along with their work, of an article in the