Clinical trials are something that many organizations are attempting to improve, whether it’s broadening the access to them, ensuring patients adhere to the treatments they are prescribed, or even ensuring the results (whether good or bad) are made widely available.
It’s very much on this track that a recent project has launched to make clinical trial data more accessible in the field of multiple sclerosis (MS). The Multiple Sclerosis Outcome Assessments Consortium (MSOAC) has developed a database containing some 2,500 patient records from nine clinical trials.
The Consortium, which has been launched by the National MS Society and Critical Path Institute (C-Path) aims to make it easier to detect the benefit of potential treatments.
“Key to the success of every C-Path consortium is the sharing of expertise and data,” the team say. “The sharing of both treatment and placebo arm data by MSOAC member companies is unparalleled.”
The project will see around 15,000 records analyzed for regulatory qualification of a new instrument that will measure the progress of MS. The tool will be submitted to both FDA and EMA for regulatory approval before eventually being used as a primary outcome measure in clinical trials.
“We’re pleased to enable investigators around the world to access previously unavailable data through the new placebo data platform, which should increase our understanding of MS,” the team says. “MSOAC is the latest in a long line of special initiatives undertaken by the Society to enhance the conduct of MS clinical trials and thereby speed the development of new therapies for all forms of MS. By bringing multiple stakeholders to the table, including people with MS, we have been able to achieve broad support for our goal of better and faster trials.”
The team began by constructing a data standard for MS to allow data from a number of different clinical trials to be grouped together.
The platform currently has data from 83 trials, with over 49,000 patients represented. All of the data has been parsed through extensive privacy and security criteria to ensure participants are protected
The project joins the likes of Cureus, an open source journal which claims it is the first crowdsourced, open access medical journal in the world.
The journal, which is listed in PubMed Central, aims to provide a peer reviewed online medical journal that provides free and open access to data. It encourages users to rate the quality of each article to provide a crowdsourced peer review system.
Getting better access to both successful and unsuccessful clinical trials will be crucial to the continuing development of medicine, so both projects are to be supported.