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Bill Gets Tough on Unreported Cancer Clinical Trial Results


A new bill introduced in the House would make it mandatory for drug developers to publish all data, even negative results, from cancer clinical studies.

Representative Tom Reed (R-NY) introduced the bill in order to aid the effort to find cures for cancer. As it stands now drug developers report positive results of studies, but hide their clinical trial failures. Reed focused his bill on cancer trials as it is the largest area of drug development and could benefit greatly from wider sharing of study data.

The bill would make it necessary that even trial failures are reported and published on ClinicalTrials.gov. Developers that fail to report the results of federally funded cancer studies would have to repay their grants. Furthermore they would not be eligible for any future government research support.

Currently, research results conducted with federal money are required to be publicly reported, but enforcement is weak.


Unreported trial data is a big issue. According to , only 22% of developers actually report summary clinical trial results within one year of completion as they are required to.


This increased access to study results could help lead to faster development of new therapies, according to . With access to even failed trials, the industry could avoid conducting redundant studies.

“Public reporting of both positive and negative results will help other research be more effective and less duplicative,” Reed said in a statement. “Enforcing the reporting requirement will not only lead to more available cancer research data, but also help every taxpayer dollar spent on research go further toward finding a cure.”

A new bill introduced in the House would make it mandatory for drug developers to publish all data from cancer clinical studies.

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