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12 Dec 2012

Number of sites a key consideration for phase-I clinical trials

A study suggests three or fewer trial sites may be best for phase-I clinical trials.

The number of trial sites is an important consideration for pharmaceutical companies conducting phase-I clinical trials, a report has shown.

Early clinical testing can benefit from using a number of different sites, but the latest research by Cutting Edge Information suggests there are also advantages to using fewer sites.

For instance, trials with fewer sites tend to encounter fewer complications when it comes to enrolling patients.
Researchers found that trials with four or five sites typically need twice as long to enrol patients as those with just two or three sites.

Ryan McGuire, a research team leader at Cutting Edge Information, said: "Organising multiple sites is a big task and it increases the time required for those sites to become active.

"Keeping site vendors to a minimum will help control costs, prevent delays and in some cases prevent site drop off rates."

According to the study, entitled 'Optimising Clinical Pharmacology Programmes: Cost-Drivers of Phase-I Trials', no trial with three or fewer sites recorded any drop-offs as a result of inability to enrol patients after initiation.

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