For years, Sara worked in a hospital, making care possible for others. Now, after being diagnosed with breast cancer, she was the one in need of care.
Clinical trials are vital for the development of new, medicines — but they rely upon volunteers to succeed. Here you’ll learn more about our clinical trials, what it’s like to participate, and how you may be able to help improve treatment options for patients.
Before a new treatment can be prescribed to a patient, it goes through quite the journey. It starts in the laboratory, with pre-clinical trials where scientists carefully study the potential new drug. If the results of these pre-clinical studies are promising, the investigational medicine begins the next state of the process, where its effects are studied in people.
These volunteers (sometimes called participants) may receive the specific study treatment(s), a placebo, or no study treatment at all, and may complete various assessments and study clinic visits. You can learn more about this and our pre-screening process by following the link to our Healthy Volunteers page below.
Each clinical trial follows a carefully designed research plan called a protocol, which has been reviewed and approved by both the local medicines regulatory authorities and typically by groups of independent medical professionals and specialists, an Ethics Committee, to protect participants’ safety. In some instances, patients, care partners, and patient advocates are included in the review and design of protocols.
Clinical trials are usually conducted over four phases, with Phase I trials typically focused on safety to find the right dosage with healthy volunteers who don’t have the condition/disease being studied, and Phase II-IV trials typically studying the safety and effectiveness of the treatment in people who have a medical condition (patients).
Want to participate?
If you’re a patient with a medical condition, you can learn more about the clinical trial process and potential benefits of participation.
If you’re a healthy volunteer, you play a vital role in Phase I trials, helping pave the way for new treatments.