As a public service to sites, CROs and biopharmaceutical companies, CenterWatch is posting a long excerpt of this week’s CWWeekly article about fraudulent study broker, Cherie Thibodeau.
If you have been defrauded of funds by Cherie Thibodeau, please contact CenterWatch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cherie Thibodeau, who operates under multiple aliases and claims to be an M.D. in her solicitations to investigative sites, CROs and biopharmaceutical companies, has bilked at least one more site out of almost $5,000 since CWWeekly published its last article about Thibodeau in February.
In the latest case, Thibodeau sent a solicitation by fax last October to Partners in Research, LLC, an Akron, Ohio-based site, to which it responded. Thibodeau followed up with a telephone call about a diabetes study study sponsored by Novartis, and within two weeks, the site was chosen to participate in that study, according to Colin Moorhead, M.D., president of Partners in Research.
Some of the terms of the agreement that the site signed with Thibodeau, who was listed as Dr. Cherie Thibodeau, M.D., Ph.D.,” were that she would handle administrative tasks, such as regulatory documentation, marketing and advertising, for the site. For that work, she would take 10% of the revenue from any study she brokered for the site and the same percentage for any study the site was able to get on its own. But after months of working on the initial study, the site had not received reimbursement from Thibodeau, even though she had been paid by the sponsor.
“Around February, it was starting to get hard to get a hold of her or get her to respond…We’ve already had a couple of patients screened and a patient enrolled in the [diabetes] study and we’re wondering when do we expect some reimbursement?” said Moorhead.
Partners in Research continued to conduct the study and a few months later, the site was able to get a study on its own from Merck...
“We were getting ready to get up and going [with the Merck study] and we told them about [Cherie Thibodeau]. We said, ‘All of our studies go through her.’ And somebody at Merck recognized something. That’s when the monitor called and said, ‘You guys have got a problem’ and she referred me to the [February 27 CWWeekly article],” said Moorhead.
After reading the article, Moorhead engaged an attorney to write a letter to provide notice of rescission of the clinical research agreement between Drug Research America and Partners in Research. The letter was sent certified mail. “She never would sign for it. We got that same certified letter back after three attempts to deliver by the post office, and we haven’t heard from her since,” said Moorhead.
Moorhead then went directly to Novartis to tell the company about his site’s situation. “[Novartis] has been super about this whole thing. There were very appreciative about being told about it. They basically said, ‘Look, we’ll make good.’