Friday, October 11, 2013

University of Minnesota stonewalling status report: an update

As longtime readers will recall, I have been trying for many months to get the University of Minnesota to provide some evidence -- any evidence at all -- of the claims by Mark Rotenberg that the university investigated the suicide of Dan Markingson and found no fault with any university researchers.  I have never believed that these reviews actually exist, mainly because Richard Bianco, the head of research protection at the university when Dan died, stated in a deposition that neither the IRB nor anyone else at the university had investigated the death.  On July 28 2013 I filed a Data Practices Act request for copies of the reviews, which had supposedly been conducted by the IRB and "the University."

On August 29, 2013, Susan McKinney sent me an evasive reply, without any written reviews.  In that reply, she tried to defend Rotenberg's public statements, claiming that even though there were no written reports the IRB discussed Dan's death and that the death was "immediately reported to the FDA." 

On the same day, in reply, I filed another Data Practices Act request.  This time I asked for "copies of the report of Dan Markingson’s death that, according to your letter, was immediately made to the FDA.  I also request copies of the minutes of the IRB meetings in which the death of Dan Markingson was discussed."

It has been six weeks since I filed that request.  I have received no reply.

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