China has revised a regulation on integrity and ethics in medical research, making clear the rules and red lines for relevant practices by medical researchers and institutes.
The code, jointly revised by the National Health Commission, the Ministry of Science and Technology and the National Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine, stipulated that the whole process of medical studies, covering everything from the project application through to the publication, review and appraisal of research results, should be subject to the integrity and good faith requirements.
It also stressed bio-safety in research work, including in work involving pathogens, noting that such research must proceed in accordance with relevant laws and regulations.
All documentation and data generated in medical research should be kept by the supervising research institution, the document said.
The code also made a fresh attempt at stemming scientific dishonesty in such research.
It made clear that academic advisors and project leaders should be held accountable for any academic misconduct in projects where they have consented to be a cosignatory. In addition to any personal negligence in terms of project management and supervision, they will also be held liable for any misconduct committed by others under their command.
Medical research institutions are required to make public their penalties for academic misconduct, and they are responsible for keeping the original data, bio-information, photographs and documentation generated in scientific research for later verification.