Category: Clinical Trials

There’s No Vaccine for HIV/AIDS, But There’s Truvada

Science has made great strides in understanding, treating, and preventing HIV/AIDS. We can hope for an AIDS vaccine, but meanwhile there is a pill that can markedly reduce the risk of becoming infected.

/ October 1, 2019

A world-renowned placebo researcher asks, “Does placebo research boost pseudoscience?”

Professor Fabrizio Benedetti is the most famous and almost certainly also the most influential researcher investigating the physiology of placebo effects. In a recent commentary, he asks whether placebo research is fueling quackery, as quacks co-opt its results. The answer to that question is certainly yes. A better question is: How do supporters of science counter the placebo narrative promoted by quacks,...

/ September 23, 2019

Federal “right-to-try” over a year later: Still a failure and still about the money (and weakening the FDA)

Federal "right-to-try" legislation was passed and signed into law by President Trump over a year ago. Advocates promised that lots of terminally ill people who were dying then would be saved by having the right to "try" experimental therapies outside of the context of clinical trials. That has not happened. This should come as no surprise, because right-to-try was never about getting...

/ September 16, 2019

One reason mouse studies often don’t translate to humans very well

Mouse models are often used as preclinical models of human disease, but the number of drugs that succeed in mice but go on to be approved as a drug for humans is only about one in ten. A new study comparing gene expression in the cells of human brains with those of mouse brains provides new insight into why.

/ August 26, 2019

Ebola: Science Is Making Progress

Good news! Research on Ebola has identified a 100% effective vaccine and medications that produce a 90% survival rate.

/ August 20, 2019

Vitamin D and Diabetes: Another Case Where Supplementation Sounded Like a Good Idea But Wasn’t

A new study shows vitamin D supplements don't prevent diabetes. But there are still unanswered questions.

/ August 13, 2019

For-profit stem cell clinics, universities, and “pay-to-play” clinical trials for autism

Stem cell therapies show great promise, but as yet the vast majority of that promise has not been validated in rigorous clinical trials. Unfortunately, for-profit stem cell clinics are running clinical trials that require patients to pay to be part of it. These trials are not rigorous. Even more unfortunately, it appears that some universities are also running "pay-to-play" clinical trials that...

/ July 29, 2019

Vyleesi: New Drug for Hypoactive Sexual Desire in Women

New drug to treat hypoactive sexual desire in women, Vyleesi, is not very effective and has several drawbacks. It is NOT Viagra for women.

/ July 23, 2019

Medicare proposal covers acupuncture for back pain study participants: A prelude to full coverage?

Medicare coverage of acupuncture is under consideration. A new proposal would provide coverage to Medicare patients participating in studies of acupuncture for back pain. This research would be used in making a final decision.

/ July 18, 2019

New Drug Is Effective for Post-Partum Depression, But There Are Drawbacks

A new drug promises to cure postpartum depression, but it is restricted and patients must be hospitalized for a 60-hour IV infusion.

/ June 25, 2019