A suicide, a cover-up, and the strange recent history of antipsychotic drugs

Carl Elliot
Date and Time: 
Wednesday, February 27, 2013 - 5:30pm

Department of Anthropology
Main Quad - Building 50
Room 51A (Colloquium Room)


When a young man committed suicide in an industry-sponsored clinical trial of atypical antipsychotic drugs at the University of Minnesota in 2004, some critics charged that he had been coerced into the study. Others claimed the trial had been rigged to produce positive results for the sponsor’s antipsychotic. Both claims may well be correct, but recent events suggest an even darker story.


Carl Elliott MD is Professor in the Center for Bioethics and the Departments of Pediatrics and Philosophy, and an affiliate faculty member in the School of Journalism and Mass Communications. His scholarly interests include corruption, enhancement technologies, research ethics, the philosophy of psychiatry, and the work of Ludwig Wittgenstein and Walker Percy. His articles have appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, The London Review of Books, Mother Jones and The New England Journal of Medicine. He is the author or editor of seven books, including White Coat, Black Hat: Adventures on the Dark Side of Medicine (Beacon, 2010) and Better than Well: American Medicine Meets the American Dream (Norton, 2003.)