Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Research Ethics Committees identify and correct problems in applications to do cancer trials

29.08.2008
Researchers running cancer trials are often critical of the Research Ethics Committee (REC) process they have to go through to get their trials approved, complaining that it’s too complex, burdensome and sometimes unreasonable. In the UK only 17% of research study applications are given immediate favourable opinion by RECs.

But a new study from the University of Leicester, recently reported in The Lancet Oncology, suggests that RECs may sometimes identify important problems in applications to conduct cancer trials.

The Leicester study, funded by the National Research Ethics Service, looked at 80 anonymised NHS REC decision letters concerning cancer trials, written between March 2004 and December 2006.

When reviewing applications to conduct cancer trials, the issue RECs are most likely to raise is that of informed consent. Committees are often concerned that the information that researchers propose to give patients may not be in language that can be easily understood. They also discourage researchers from presenting trials too enthusiastically, and seek to prevent researchers from providing misleading information. One Committee pointed out that the cancer drug side-effects were described as mild on the patient information sheet, but in the investigator's brochure it was noted that several patients had experienced serious adverse events thought to be related to the drug.

The study found that RECs identify a high rate of mistakes in applications, including missing information, ticking the wrong boxes, errors in the information provided and not following correct procedures.

The findings support the conclusion that RECs, though by their constitution somewhat bureaucratic, provide an important independent check on clinical trials by ensuring that investigators do not omit important information or underestimate risks in the information they give patients.

Professor Mary Dixon-Woods, of Medical Sociology in the Department of Health Sciences at the University, commented: “There have been a lot of complaints about REC procedures from researchers in recent years. They often find the process onerous and bureaucratic. However, this study is the first time anyone has systematically analysed what RECs are saying about cancer trial proposals.

“RECs are looking for evidence that researchers are sensitive to ethical issues, in particular to participants’ interests, and that information given to potential participants explains the trial fully and truthfully. Researchers can improve their chances of success at ethical review by really good preparation.”

The study, led by Professor Dixon-Woods, was carried out with Emma Angell, Carolyn Tarrant and Anne Thomas, in the Social Science Research Group in the Department of Health Sciences at the University of Leicester and the Department of Cancer Studies and Molecular Medicine at the Leicester Royal Infirmary.

Ather Mirza | alfa
Further information:
http://www.le.ac.uk

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Researchers image atomic structure of important immune regulator
11.12.2018 | Brigham and Women's Hospital

nachricht Potential seen for tailoring treatment for acute myeloid leukemia
10.12.2018 | University of Washington Health Sciences/UW Medicine

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Topological material switched off and on for the first time

Key advance for future topological transistors

Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...

Im Focus: Researchers develop method to transfer entire 2D circuits to any smooth surface

What if a sensor sensing a thing could be part of the thing itself? Rice University engineers believe they have a two-dimensional solution to do just that.

Rice engineers led by materials scientists Pulickel Ajayan and Jun Lou have developed a method to make atom-flat sensors that seamlessly integrate with devices...

Im Focus: Three components on one chip

Scientists at the University of Stuttgart and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) succeed in important further development on the way to quantum Computers.

Quantum computers one day should be able to solve certain computing problems much faster than a classical computer. One of the most promising approaches is...

Im Focus: Substitute for rare earth metal oxides

New Project SNAPSTER: Novel luminescent materials by encapsulating phosphorescent metal clusters with organic liquid crystals

Nowadays energy conversion in lighting and optoelectronic devices requires the use of rare earth oxides.

Im Focus: A bit of a stretch... material that thickens as it's pulled

Scientists have discovered the first synthetic material that becomes thicker - at the molecular level - as it is stretched.

Researchers led by Dr Devesh Mistry from the University of Leeds discovered a new non-porous material that has unique and inherent "auxetic" stretching...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

Expert Panel on the Future of HPC in Engineering

03.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Electronic evidence of non-Fermi liquid behaviors in an iron-based superconductor

11.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Topological material switched off and on for the first time

11.12.2018 | Materials Sciences

NIST's antenna evaluation method could help boost 5G network capacity and cut costs

11.12.2018 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>