Upbeat Cancer Research Funded by Big Tobacco
Cigarette bucks paid for controversial lung cancer study
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 26, 2008 3:37 AM CDT
The image on the screen is that of a man's lungs, taken during a full body CT scan. Research showing CT scanning can prevent most lung cancer deaths was funded by a tobacco company.   (KRT Photos)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – Tobacco money paid for research that said CT scans could prevent 80% of lung cancer deaths, the New York Times reports. The news has shocked cancer researchers, who are generally loathe to have anything to do with cigarette companies. “If you’re using blood money, you need to tell people you’re using blood money,” said the head of the American Cancer Society.

A footnote at the end of the 2006 study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, mentioned that it had been partially funded by a little-known charity, whose tax records revealed that almost all its money came from the parent company of the Liggett Group, a major producer of cigarettes. Some cancer groups have embraced the study's controversial findings, but others say the research is now tainted and wonder how such an apparent conflict of interest was allowed.