Adaptive Trial Design: Could We Use This Approach to Improve Clinical Trials in the Field of Global Health?

Trudie Lang Global Health Clinical Trials Programme, Centre for Tropical Medicine, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom

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We need more clinical trials in the world's poorest regions to evaluate new drugs and vaccines, and also to find better ways to manage health issues. Clinical trials are expensive, time consuming, and cumbersome. However, in wealthier regions these limiting factors are being addressed to make trials less administrative and improve the designs. A good example is adaptive trial design. This innovation is becoming accepted by the regulators and has been taken up by the pharmaceutical industry to reduce product development times and costs. If this approach makes trials easier and less expensive surely we should be implementing this approach in the field of tropical medicine and international health? As yet this has rarely been proposed and there are few examples. There is a need for raising the awareness of these design approaches because they could be used to make dramatic improvements to clinical research in developing countries.

Author Notes

*Address correspondence to Trudie Lang, Global Health Trials, Centre for Tropical Medicine, CCVTM, Churchill Hospital, Old Road, Headington, Oxford, OX7 3LU. E-mail: Trudie.lang@ndm.ox.ac.uk

Financial support: No specific funding has been received for this article. The author is funded and employed by the Centre for Tropical Medicine, University of Oxford, which receives core funding from the Wellcome Trust.

Author's address: Trudie Lang, Global Health Clinical Trials Programme, Centre for Tropical Medicine, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK, E-mail: Trudie.lang@ndm.ox.ac.uk.

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