Trial By Error: Yet Another Letter About The Lightning Process Study

David Tuller


By David Tuller, DrPH.


This morning I sent the following letter to Fiona Godlee, editor-in-chief of The BMJ and editorial director of BMJ. I cc-d Carol Monaghan MP, Darren Jones MP, and Nicky Morgan MP.


Dear Dr. Godlee—

More than a dozen years ago, a group of leading medical journals agreed that requiring clinical trials to be prospectively registered could reduce publication bias and selective outcome reporting–and thus help to protect research integrity and credibility. In 2013, you testified before the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee about the importance of this collective initiative.

Here is part of your testimony: “When the major journals first said in 2005 that they would not only publish but only peer review and consider randomised trials that had been prospectively registered, it sent a strong message…As far as we are aware, in the last two years we have not published any trial that has not been prospectively registered.”


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