Taren Grom, Editor
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Scurvy + Science
In May 1747, the HMS Salisbury of Britain’s Royal Navy fleet was patrolling the English Channel at a time when scurvy is thought to have killed more British seamen than French and Spanish arms. According to the Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP), aboard this ship, surgeon mate James Lind, a pioneer of naval hygiene, conducts what many refer to as the first clinical trial. Acting on a hunch that scurvy was caused by putrefaction of the body that could be cured through the introduction of acids, Lind recruited 12 men for his “fair test.” Those administered various concentrations of cider, sulphuric acid, vinegar, sea water, and oranges and lemons, as well as other “medicinal” remedies, such as garlic, mustard seed, dried radish root, and gum myrrh, experienced “the most sudden and good visible effects,” according to Lind’s report on the trial.
Though it is said that Lind might have left some confused about his recommendations regarding the use of citrus in curing scurvy, he is according to ACRP, rightly recognized for having taken care to compare like with like, and the design of his trial may have inspired and informed future clinical trial design.
ACRP celebrates on May 20 Clinical Trials Day in commemoration of Lind’s medical breakthrough in a variety of ways. For example, Craig Lipset, head of clinical innovation, global product development at Pfizer, hosted a Webinar — Unpacking Clinical Trial Innovation: Separating Hype from Health (Mr. Lipset is a PharmaVOICE 100 honoree and panelist at the upcoming PharmaVOICE 100 Celebration in September). Ken Getz, director of sponsored research programs at Tufts CSDD and founder of CISCRP (Center for Information and Study on Clinical Research Participation), also presented a Webinar: An Aerial View of Forces Reshaping the Global Clinical Research Enterprise. Mr. Getz also provided his insights on the changing clinical research landscape in this month’s Forum. He joins dozens of industry experts who provide their perspectives on trends and challenges that stakeholders across the development continuum are facing.
Others, such as INC Research, a global Phase I to IV contract research organization and the nonprofit organization CISCRP, launched a new initiative designed to promote greater awareness of the importance of clinical trial participation in advancing public health. The “Inspiring Hope” Ideathon, which kicks off June 1 and culminates with an event Sept. 27-28 at District Hall in Boston, provides a forum for stakeholders from across the clinical research environment to share and develop their ideas for effectively increasing the awareness of clinical trials among patients, healthcare professionals, and the general public.
Still others, such as UBC, are celebrating the unsung heroes of the clinical world through their Pharma Heroes campaign. They are encouraging everyone to submit their hero, and they’ll do the rest, including making a charitable donation in honor of your Pharma Hero. Log onto www.PharmaHeroes.com.
Ahoy to Lind and his amazing legacy.
The new technology is not a cure for paralysis. Mr. Burkhart could use his hand only when connected to computers in the lab, and the researchers said there was much work to do before the system could provide significant mobile independence.
But the field of neural engineering is advancing quickly. Using brain implants, scientists can decode brain signals and match them to specific movements. Previously, people have learned to guide a cursor on a screen with their thoughts, primates have learned to skillfully use a robotic arm using only neural signals and scientists have shown in primates that thoughts can move arm muscles. This new study demonstrates that the bypass approach can restore critical skills to limbs no longer directly connected to the brain.
Biopharma sponsors now aim to make sure clinical development now includes programs that bring the patients’ feedback to the protocols and study designs.
Mobile channels have opened up a huge opportunity to increase engagement with — and knowledge of — patients.
China’s population, strong economy, and ever-improving regulatory environment are converging to create a dynamic market for the global pharmaceutical industry.
Volume 16 • Number 6
Publisher Lisa Banket
Editor Taren Grom
Creative Director Marah Walsh
Director of Sales
National Account Manager
Webcast Network Producer
by PharmaLinx LLC, Titusville, NJ
Printed in the U.S.A.
Volume Sixteen, Number Six
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