Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

NLM Director’s Comments Transcript: Clinical Trial Transparency & Challenges 04/25/2011

Photograph of test tubes in a tray

Two recently published studies suggest author conflicts of interest are not frequently revealed in comprehensive analyses of clinical trials and note some of the challenges to provide a public resource of clinical trial findings.

From the Director’s Comments Web page

The current two studies suggest there are barriers to make the results and conflicts of interest in clinical trials more transparent. However, a discussion of the issues that foster transparency represents progress and the increasing number and comprehensive accuracy of future trial summaries (provided by represents a step forward….

…’s clinical trials health topic page reports clinical trials are research studies that test how well new medical approaches work in people. A study answers scientific questions and tries to find better ways to prevent, screen for, diagnose or treat a disease. Clinical trials also sometimes compare a new to an existing treatment.’s clinical trials health topic page provides an interactive tutorial that provides background information in a user-friendly style. The clinical trials interactive tutorial is available in the ‘start here’ section. An easy-to-read overview of clinical trials also is provided by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and is accessible in the ‘overviews’ section.

Links to an NIH website that provides some questions to ask a physician (if you wish to participate in a clinical trial) is provided in the ‘specific conditions’ section of’s clinical trials health topic page.’s clinical trials health topic page also contains links to the latest pertinent journal research articles, which are available in the ‘journal articles’ section.

To find’s clinical trials health topic page, type ‘clinical trials’ in the search box on’s home page, then, click on ‘Clinical trials (National Library of Medicine).’

May 3, 2011 - Posted by | Consumer Health, Finding Aids/Directories

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