Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

All FDA drug approvals not created equal

Date:
January 21, 2014
Source:
Yale University
Summary:
Many patients and physicians assume that the safety and effectiveness of newly approved drugs is well understood by the federal Food and Drug Administration -- but a new study shows that the clinical trials used by the federal Food and Drug Administration to approve new drugs between 2005 and 2012 vary widely in their thoroughness.

Many patients and physicians assume that the safety and effectiveness of newly approved drugs is well understood by the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) -- but a new study by researchers at Yale School of Medicine shows that the clinical trials used by the FDA to approve new drugs between 2005 and 2012 vary widely in their thoroughness.

Published in the Jan. 22/29 issue of JAMA, the study is the first systematic analysis of the standard used by the FDA in making drug approval decisions.

"We found that during the study period, more than one-third of the drugs were approved on the basis of a single trial, without replication, and many other trials were small, short, and focused on lab values, or some other surrogate metric of effect, rather than clinical endpoints like death," said first author and Yale School of Medicine student Nicholas S. Downing, who conducted the study with senior author Joseph Ross, M.D., and colleagues at the Yale Center for Outcomes Research & Evaluation (CORE).

Downing and the team evaluated the strength of clinical trial evidence supporting FDA approval decisions for new drugs by characterizing key features of efficacy trials, such as trial size, design duration, and end points. They used publicly available FDA documents to identify 188 novel therapeutic agents for seven years. These medical review documents summarized in great detail the rationale behind FDA approvals.

"Based on our analysis, some drugs are approved on the basis of large, high-quality clinical trials, while others are approved based on results of smaller trials," said Ross, assistant professor of internal medicine at Yale School of Medicine. "There was a lack of uniformity in the level of evidence the FDA used."

He added: "We also found that only 40% of drug approvals involved a clinical trial that compared a new drug to existing treatment offerings. This is an important step for determining whether the new drug is a better option than existing, older drugs."

Downing said survey data shows that patients expect drugs approved by the FDA to be both safe and effective. "Based on our study of the data, we can't be certain that this expectation is necessarily justified, given the quantity and quality of the variability we saw in the drug approval process," he said.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Yale University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Nicholas S. Downing, Jenerius A. Aminawung, Nilay D. Shah, Harlan M. Krumholz, Joseph S. Ross. Clinical Trial Evidence Supporting FDA Approval of Novel Therapeutic Agents, 2005-2012. JAMA, 2014; 311 (4): 368 DOI: 10.1001/jama.2013.282034

Cite This Page:

Yale University. "All FDA drug approvals not created equal." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 January 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140121164758.htm>.
Yale University. (2014, January 21). All FDA drug approvals not created equal. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140121164758.htm
Yale University. "All FDA drug approvals not created equal." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140121164758.htm (accessed April 16, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) The ebola virus outbreak in West Africa is now linked to 121 deaths. Health officials fear the virus will continue to spread in urban areas. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cognitive Function: Is It All Downhill From Age 24?

Cognitive Function: Is It All Downhill From Age 24?

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) A new study out of Canada says cognitive motor performance begins deteriorating around age 24. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Mt. Everest Helped Scientists Research Diabetes

How Mt. Everest Helped Scientists Research Diabetes

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) British researchers were able to use Mount Everest's low altitudes to study insulin resistance. They hope to find ways to treat diabetes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins