Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "Food and Drug Administration" ...

  • Almost Forbidden

    As vaping-related youth nicotine addiction surged across the United States, we exposed a key political decision to ignore the clear warning signs years before the crisis. Government documents obtained by the Los Angeles Times revealed that, four years ago, the Food and Drug administration attempted to ban vaping flavors that were hooking young teenagers to nicotine. But after a deluge of over 100 lobbyists visited the White House, senior political officials overruled experts at the FDA and eliminated the flavor ban, along with much of the scientific evidence calling for it. Later that year, the national youth vaping rate skyrocketed.
  • The Implant Files

    For decades, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s medical-device approval system has allowed defective implants to spill onto the market, like contaminated water from a broken pipe. Many of those products have remained on hospital shelves, and in patient bodies, long after problems were known. On Sunday, November 25, 2018, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, the Associated Press, the NBC News investigative unit and partners around the world published a yearlong investigation that shows regulators bowing to industry pressure to rush approvals, lower safety standards and cloak critical information, and the consequences: a string of grisly accidents that have left hundreds of thousands disfigured, disabled or dead.
  • How to Spin the Science News

    This story is an exploration of the tactics used by the Food and Drug Administration to control media coverage. The agency cultivates a coterie of journalists whom it keeps in line with threats, while it denies others access, even deceiving them with half-truths in attempts to handicap them in their pursuit of a story. At the same time, it uses a controversial tool -- the so-called "close-hold embargo" -- to exert control over the media, even though using that tool is a direct violation of FDA's (and HHS') written policy. https://www.documentcloud.org/public/search/Project:%20%22FDA%20Embargo%20documents%22
  • Drug Problems: Dangerous Decision-Making at the FDA

    The public depends on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to ensure that medicines are safe and effective, but through many months and almost 30,000 words of reporting, POGO’s ongoing “Drug Problems” investigation has revealed dangerously lax FDA oversight of prescription drugs. We found that the FDA has set low standards, approved drugs based on flawed clinical trials, taken a toothless approach toward doctors who violate standards of clinical research, allowed misleading marketing, provided inadequate warnings about drug hazards, slighted reports of drug-related deaths and injuries, withheld important information from the public, and made other dubious judgments that advanced the interests of pharmaceutical companies while putting patients at potentially deadly risk. Among other developments detailed in our package: After we exposed a potentially crippling flaw in the testing of a blockbuster drug, the FDA and its European counterpart said they were reexamining the clinical trial upon which they had based the drug’s approval.
  • Deadly Medicine

    The Wall Street Journal’s alarming revelations about a once common medical procedure had the powerful and lasting impact of saving lives. After nearly a year of Journal reporting, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration imposed strict limits on the device involved in the procedure. Doctors and hospitals curbed or abandoned the practice. Johnson & Johnson, the top manufacturer, pulled the device off the market. And women undergoing surgery were now armed with information that, for many, could determine life or death.
  • Colgate Total Ingredient Linked to Hormones, Cancer Spotlights FDA Process

    Kary exposed health risks posed by antibacterial chemical triclosan in Colgate Total toothpaste, in part by examining pages of Colgate-Palmolive's Food and Drug Administration application that were kept private after the toothpaste's 1997 approval. These previously undisclosed pages, summaries of scientific studies Colgate submitted as part of its new-drug application, contained indications of a potential health danger in one of America's top-selling toothpastes, according to scientists who reviewed them for Bloomberg News. Kary's article raises important questions, including whether the FDA did appropriate due diligence in approving Total 17 years ago, and whether its approval should stand in light of new research. By combining tough and fair investigative reporting, clear science writing and an examination of America's regulatory system, Kary's piece gave readers a valuable new tool for decision-making on an important health and wellness front.
  • Left to Their Own Devices

    Medical devices are crucial for the wellbeing of many Americans. They can be as life-sustaining as cardiac pacemakers or as simple as wooden tongue depressors. Regardless of their complexity, all medical devices must go through a clearance process by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) before they are cleared for market. While the vast majority of these devices are safe and effective, according to the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), hundreds are recalled every year. And the impact of an unsafe medical device can be devastating.
  • Dispute over drug in feed limiting US meat exports

    Ractopamine, a controversial veterinary drug used widely in pork production to boost growth and leanness, is limiting US meat exports. An investigation of U.S. Food and Drug Administration records found that more pigs were reported to have suffered adverse effects from ractopamine than any other pork drug. The report, produced by the Food and Environment Reporting Network and published on msnbc.com, found that ractopamine had not only sparked complaints about animal welfare, but had also raised concerns about potential human health impacts. China, Taiwan, the EU and others had all raised concerns about the gaps in science backing the safety of the drug, which as been approved as safe by the FDA. Much of the available research used in international and US safety assessments was sponsored by Elanco, the drug company that makes ractopamine.
  • Arsenic in food

    Consumer Reports revealed that arsenic is present in surprising amounts in common food products such as Minute Maid apple juice, Uncle Ben’s brown rice, organic rice cakes, and even infant rice cereal. Yet there is no federal limit on arsenic in most foods and juices, although there is for drinking water. And while Food and Drug Administration claimed that the arsenic in apple and grape juice is essentially a harmless form, our tests showed otherwise.
  • "Physicians on Pharma's Payroll: Educators or Marketers?"

    This story focuses on doctors as industry speakers and their relationship with pharmaceutical companies. The pharmaceutical companies claim to choose speakers based on expertise, but further investigation shows that many of the hired physicians have "serious transgressions on their state records." They also tend to be "high prescribers" of the company's products.