Crime in Research: An Exploration of Past Unethical Research Practices

Kaye Callender, University at Albany
Debernee S. Pugh, University at Albany
Julianna R. Benjamin, University at Albany

A historical account of how unethical research has negatively impacted human beings is the subject of this study. Past extreme cases are examined. The extreme cases include: 1) the Syphilis Experiment in Tuskegee where 128 black men died and their wives and children were infected with syphilis; 2) Nazi Germany where more than 10,000 people were intentionally killed in involuntary euthanasia programs in psychiatric institutions; and 3) the John Hopkins study where a woman asthma volunteer died after participating in an asthma study. Children, prisoners, race and class are further studied as subcomponents of unethical research practices. Finally, the reluctance of individuals to participate in scientific research is discussed.

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Updated 05/20/2006