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Paving the way for future pan-European clinical trials
Date:10/9/2007

Pan-European collaboration is important for many clinical trials and essential for trials that are investigating treatments for rare diseases. That was the message delivered today by the European Medical Research Councils (EMRC), the membership organisation for medical research councils across Europe based at the European Science Foundation (ESF) in Strasbourg, which is coordinating two trials in rare diseases and about to launch a review of how best to implement clinical trials that are initiated by investigators. This forward look, will draw upon the experiences of the two trials that are underway.

For many rare conditions, there are insufficient numbers of patients in any single country to allow meaningful clinical trials to seek better treatments. To overcome this problem the ESF programme called Pan-European Clinical Trials (ECT) has seen the successful launch of two trials into rare bone conditions, osteosarcoma and fibrous dysplasia. The two trials now underway are being coordinated through the ESFs EUROCORES scheme, which is a framework to promote and stimulate European collaborative research. While setting up these two trials, the coordinators had to overcome a number of challenges.

The EURAMOS clinical trial, which involves collaboration across 11 European countries, as well as the USA and Canada, is recruiting some 1,400 patients over the next few years to improve treatment for osteosarcoma, the most common bone cancer in children. The trial has already recruited more patients than any other osteosarcoma trial ever performed. Professor Stefan Bielack (Olgahospital, Stuttgart, Germany), the coordinator of the EURAMOS trial, said, While sarcomas are rare, accounting for less than one per cent of all cancers, they are some of the most frequent that occur in childhood and adolescence. Treatment is complex and collaboration between many centres and different countries is crucial.

The second trial being undertaken, PROFIDYS, is d
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Contact: Sofia Valleley
svalleley@esf.org
33-388-762-149
European Science Foundation
Source:Eurekalert

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