Wall Street Journal Reporter Discusses Theranos Investigation (Video)

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The blood-testing firm Theranos has pushed back fiercely on The Wall Street Journal's reporting on a host of irregularities it found with the company's cheaper, less-intrusive blood-tests. In one statement, Theranos called a particular story "inaccurate, misleading and defamatory."

So we thought this long interview with the Journal reporter who's written those stories was interesting. John Carreyrou appeared last week on the video podcast "This Week in Startups," hosted by investor and entrepreneur Jason Calicanis. In the interview, Carreyrou defends his reporting and recaps some of his findings. He also says he repeatedly tried to interview Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes but was rebuffed. You can see selected clips from the interview here, including one in which he talks about the Journal's vetting process.

Keep in mind Calicanis himself is a big critic of Theranos.  He is not the most objective interviewer. (And you'll also have to sit through some ads.) Also keep in mind, again, that Theranos denies the claims made in the reports, which include allegations that the company hid test results and data that cast doubt on the accuracy of its technology.

To Recap...


For those unfamiliar with the story:

Last year, Theranos was valued at $9 billion, making then 31-year-old founder Elizabeth Holmes the world's youngest female billionaire, according to Forbes. Driving the investor rush: The company's claim that it could provide cheaper, less-intrusive blood tests.

But in a foreshadowing of what was to come,  Forbes science and medicine reporter Matthew Herper wrote: "How much is real and how much is hype? ... I still have no idea how Theranos’ technology works."

Nobody outside the company knew either. Now, the consensus leans more toward "hype" than "real," thanks to Carryrou's stories and a federal government's inspection finding that the company's Newark, California lab posed "immediate jeopardy" to patients.

Theranos says the lab is under new management and that it's remediated problems there. It has until Friday to respond to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services with a plan to correct deficiencies at the lab.  CMS says a report will be released after that plan is reviewed and accepted, but it doesn't have a timeframe for when that will be.

Theranos has declined to say if it will make its plan public.