(2022). Early phase clinical trials extension to guidelines for the content of statistical analysis plans. Bmj (clinical research ed.),
Cruz Rivera, S.
Haf Davies, E.
von Hildebrand, M.
(2022). Ethical Considerations for the Inclusion of Patient-Reported Outcomes in Clinical Research: The PRO Ethics Guidelines. Jama,
Patient-reported outcomes (PROs) can inform health care decisions, regulatory decisions, and health care policy. They also can be used for audit/benchmarking and monitoring symptoms to provide timely care tailored to individual needs. However, several ethical issues have been raised in relation to PRO use.
To develop international, consensus-based, PRO-specific ethical guidelines for clinical research.
The PRO ethics guidelines were developed following the Enhancing the Quality and Transparency of Health Research (EQUATOR) Network's guideline development framework. This included a systematic review of the ethical implications of PROs in clinical research. The databases MEDLINE (Ovid), Embase, AMED, and CINAHL were searched from inception until March 2020. The keywords patient reported outcome* and ethic* were used to search the databases. Two reviewers independently conducted title and abstract screening before full-text screening to determine eligibility. The review was supplemented by the SPIRIT-PRO Extension recommendations for trial protocol. Subsequently, a 2-round international Delphi process (n = 96 participants; May and August 2021) and a consensus meeting (n = 25 international participants; October 2021) were held. Prior to voting, consensus meeting participants were provided with a summary of the Delphi process results and information on whether the items aligned with existing ethical guidance.
Twenty-three items were considered in the first round of the Delphi process: 6 relevant candidate items from the systematic review and 17 additional items drawn from the SPIRIT-PRO Extension. Ninety-six international participants voted on the relevant importance of each item for inclusion in ethical guidelines and 12 additional items were recommended for inclusion in round 2 of the Delphi (35 items in total). Fourteen items were recommended for inclusion at the consensus meeting (n = 25 participants). The final wording of the PRO ethical guidelines was agreed on by consensus meeting participants with input from 6 additional individuals. Included items focused on PRO-specific ethical issues relating to research rationale, objectives, eligibility requirements, PRO concepts and domains, PRO assessment schedules, sample size, PRO data monitoring, barriers to PRO completion, participant acceptability and burden, administration of PRO questionnaires for participants who are unable to self-report PRO data, input on PRO strategy by patient partners or members of the public, avoiding missing data, and dissemination plans.
Conclusions and relevance
The PRO ethics guidelines provide recommendations for ethical issues that should be addressed in PRO clinical research. Addressing ethical issues of PRO clinical research has the potential to ensure high-quality PRO data while minimizing participant risk, burden, and harm and protecting participant and researcher welfare..
Fenor de la Maza, M.D.
de Bono, J.S.
(2022). Immune Biomarkers in Metastatic Castration-resistant Prostate Cancer. ,
BACKGROUND: Metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC) is a heterogeneous disease in which molecular stratification is needed to improve clinical outcomes. The identification of predictive biomarkers can have a major impact on the care of these patients, but the availability of metastatic tissue samples for research in this setting is limited. OBJECTIVE: To study the prevalence of immune biomarkers of potential clinical utility to immunotherapy in mCRPC and to determine their association with overall survival (OS). DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: From 100 patients, mCRPC biopsies were assayed by whole exome sequencing, targeted next-generation sequencing, RNA sequencing, tumor mutational burden, T-cell-inflamed gene expression profile (TcellinfGEP) score (Nanostring), and immunohistochemistry for programmed cell death 1 ligand 1 (PD-L1), ataxia-telangiectasia mutated (ATM), phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN), SRY homology box 2 (SOX2), and the presence of neuroendocrine features. OUTCOME MEASUREMENTS AND STATISTICAL ANALYSIS: The phi coefficient determined correlations between biomarkers of interest. OS was assessed using Kaplan-Meier curves and adjusted hazard ratios (aHRs) from Cox regression. RESULTS AND LIMITATIONS: PD-L1 and SOX2 protein expression was detected by immunohistochemistry (combined positive score ≥1 and >5% cells, respectively) in 24 (33%) and 27 (27%) mCRPC biopsies, respectively; 23 (26%) mCRPC biopsies had high TcellinfGEP scores (>-0.318). PD-L1 protein expression and TcellinfGEP scores were positively correlated (phi 0.63 [0.45; 0.76]). PD-L1 protein expression (aHR: 1.90 [1.05; 3.45]), high TcellinfGEP score (aHR: 1.86 [1.04; 3.31]), and SOX2 expression (aHR: 2.09 [1.20; 3.64]) were associated with worse OS. CONCLUSIONS: PD-L1, TcellinfGEP score, and SOX2 are prognostic of outcome from the mCRPC setting. If validated, predictive biomarker studies incorporating survival endpoints need to take these findings into consideration. PATIENT SUMMARY: This study presents an analysis of immune biomarkers in biopsies from patients with metastatic prostate cancer. We describe tumor alterations that predict prognosis that can impact future studies..
(2021). Adaptive trial designs: what is the continual reassessment method?. Arch dis child educ pract ed,
(2021). TRAFIC: statistical design and analysis plan for a pragmatic early phase 1/2 Bayesian adaptive dose escalation trial in rheumatoid arthritis. Trials,
Background Adaptive model-based dose-finding designs have demonstrated advantages over traditional rule-based designs but have increased statistical complexity but uptake has been slow especially outside of cancer trials. TRAFIC is a multi-centre, early phase trial in rheumatoid arthritis incorporating a model-based design.Methods A Bayesian adaptive dose-finding phase I trial rolling into a single-arm, single-stage phase II trial. Model parameters for phase I were chosen via Monte Carlo simulation evaluating objective performance measures under clinically relevant scenarios and incorporated stopping rules for early termination. Potential designs were further calibrated utilising dose transition pathways.Discussion TRAFIC is an MRC-funded trial of a re-purposed treatment demonstrating that it is possible to design, fund and implement a model-based phase I trial in a non-cancer population within conventional research funding tracks and regulatory constraints. The phase I design allows borrowing of information from previous trials, all accumulated data to be utilised in decision-making, verification of operating characteristics through simulation, improved understanding for management and oversight teams through dose transition pathways. The rolling phase II design brings efficiencies in trial conduct including site and monitoring activities and cost. TRAFIC is the first funded model-based dose-finding trial in inflammatory disease demonstrating that small phase I/II trials can have an underlying statistical basis for decision-making and interpretation.Trial registration Trials Registration: ISRCTN, ISRCTN36667085 . Registered on September 26, 2014..
(2021). Would the Recommended Dose Have Been Different Using Novel Dose-Finding Designs? Comparing Dose-Finding Designs in Published Trials. Jco precision oncology,
PURPOSE Simulation studies have shown that novel designs such as the continual reassessment method and the Bayesian optimal interval (BOIN) design outperform the 3 + 3 design by recommending the maximum tolerated dose (MTD) more often, using less patients, and allotting more patients to the MTD. However, it is not clear whether these novel designs would have yielded different results in the context of real-world dose-finding trials. This is a commonly mentioned reason for the continuous use of 3 + 3 designs for oncology trials, with investigators considering simulation studies not sufficiently convincing to warrant the additional design complexity of novel designs. METHODS We randomly sampled 60 published dose-finding trials to obtain 22 that used the 3 + 3 design, identified an MTD, published toxicity data, and had more than two dose levels. We compared the published MTD with the estimated MTD using the continual reassessment method and BOIN using target toxicity rates of 25% and 30% and toxicity data from the trial. Moreover, we compared patient allocation and sample size assuming that these novel designs had been implemented. RESULTS Model-based designs chose dose levels higher than the published MTD in about 40% of the trials, with estimated and observed toxicity rates closer to the target toxicity rates of 25% and 30%. They also assigned less patients to suboptimal doses and permitted faster dose escalation. CONCLUSION This study using published dose-finding trials shows that novel designs would recommend different MTDs and confirms the advantages of these designs compared with the 3 + 3 design, which were demonstrated by simulation studies..
(2021). Costs and staffing resource requirements for adaptive clinical trials: quantitative and qualitative results from the Costing Adaptive Trials project. Bmc med,
BACKGROUND: Adaptive designs offer great promise in improving the efficiency and patient-benefit of clinical trials. An important barrier to further increased use is a lack of understanding about which additional resources are required to conduct a high-quality adaptive clinical trial, compared to a traditional fixed design. The Costing Adaptive Trials (CAT) project investigated which additional resources may be required to support adaptive trials. METHODS: We conducted a mock costing exercise amongst seven Clinical Trials Units (CTUs) in the UK. Five scenarios were developed, derived from funded clinical trials, where a non-adaptive version and an adaptive version were described. Each scenario represented a different type of adaptive design. CTU staff were asked to provide the costs and staff time they estimated would be needed to support the trial, categorised into specified areas (e.g. statistics, data management, trial management). This was calculated separately for the non-adaptive and adaptive version of the trial, allowing paired comparisons. Interviews with 10 CTU staff who had completed the costing exercise were conducted by qualitative researchers to explore reasons for similarities and differences. RESULTS: Estimated resources associated with conducting an adaptive trial were always (moderately) higher than for the non-adaptive equivalent. The median increase was between 2 and 4% for all scenarios, except for sample size re-estimation which was 26.5% (as the adaptive design could lead to a lengthened study period). The highest increase was for statistical staff, with lower increases for data management and trial management staff. The percentage increase in resources varied across different CTUs. The interviews identified possible explanations for differences, including (1) experience in adaptive trials, (2) the complexity of the non-adaptive and adaptive design, and (3) the extent of non-trial specific core infrastructure funding the CTU had. CONCLUSIONS: This work sheds light on additional resources required to adequately support a high-quality adaptive trial. The percentage increase in costs for supporting an adaptive trial was generally modest and should not be a barrier to adaptive designs being cost-effective to use in practice. Informed by the results of this research, guidance for investigators and funders will be developed on appropriately resourcing adaptive trials..
(2020). Designing and evaluating dose-escalation studies made easy: The MoDEsT web app. Clin trials,
BACKGROUND/AIMS: Dose-escalation studies are essential in the early stages of developing novel treatments, when the aim is to find a safe dose for administration in humans. Despite their great importance, many dose-escalation studies use study designs based on heuristic algorithms with well-documented drawbacks. Bayesian decision procedures provide a design alternative that is conceptually simple and methodologically sound, but very rarely used in practice, at least in part due to their perceived statistical complexity. There are currently very few easily accessible software implementations that would facilitate their application. METHODS: We have created MoDEsT, a free and easy-to-use web application for designing and conducting single-agent dose-escalation studies with a binary toxicity endpoint, where the objective is to estimate the maximum tolerated dose. MoDEsT uses a well-established Bayesian decision procedure based on logistic regression. The software has a user-friendly point-and-click interface, makes changes visible in real time, and automatically generates a range of graphs, tables, and reports. It is aimed at clinicians as well as statisticians with limited expertise in model-based dose-escalation designs, and does not require any statistical programming skills to evaluate the operating characteristics of, or implement, the Bayesian dose-escalation design. RESULTS: MoDEsT comes in two parts: a 'Design' module to explore design options and simulate their operating characteristics, and a 'Conduct' module to guide the dose-finding process throughout the study. We illustrate the practical use of both modules with data from a real phase I study in terminal cancer. CONCLUSION: Enabling both methodologists and clinicians to understand and apply model-based study designs with ease is a key factor towards their routine use in early-phase studies. We hope that MoDEsT will enable incorporation of Bayesian decision procedures for dose escalation at the earliest stage of clinical trial design, thus increasing their use in early-phase trials..
Rao Baikady, B.
de Bono, J.S.
(2020). A risk-based approach to experimental early phase clinical trials during the COVID-19 pandemic. The lancet. oncology,
(2020). From patent to patient: analysing access to innovative cancer drugs. Drug discovery today,
Analysis of cancer drugs licensed through the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in 2000-2016 shows that the number of authorisations increased over that timeframe. The median number of licensed drugs each year rose from six for 2000-2008 to 13.5 for 2009-2016. Over 2000-2016, there were 64 drug authorisations for haematological, 15 for breast, and 12 for skin cancer, but none for oesophageal, brain, bladder, or uterine cancer. Only 6% of authorisations included a paediatric indication. The average time for a drug to progress from patent priority date to availability on the National Health Service (NHS) increased from 12.8 years for drugs first licensed in 2000-2008 to 14.0 years for those licensed in 2009-2016. There was evidence that the most innovative drugs were not being prioritised for EMA licensing and NICE approval..
(2020). Adaptive trial designs: what are multiarm, multistage trials?. Arch dis child educ pract ed,
(2020). Lenalidomide, dexamethasone and alemtuzumab or ofatumumab in high-risk chronic lymphocytic leukaemia: final results of the NCRI CLL210 trial. Haematologica,
(2020). Phase I trial of WEE1 inhibition with chemotherapy and radiotherapy as adjuvant treatment, and a window of opportunity trial with cisplatin in patients with head and neck cancer: the WISTERIA trial protocol. Bmj open,
INTRODUCTION: Patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma with locally advanced disease often require multimodality treatment with surgery, radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy. Adjuvant radiotherapy with concurrent chemotherapy is offered to patients with high-risk pathological features postsurgery. While cure rates are improved, overall survival remains suboptimal and treatment has a significant negative impact on quality of life.Cell cycle checkpoint kinase inhibition is a promising method to selectively potentiate the therapeutic effects of chemoradiation. Our hypothesis is that combining chemoradiation with a WEE1 inhibitor will affect the biological response to DNA damage caused by cisplatin and radiation, thereby enhancing clinical outcomes, without increased toxicity. This trial explores the associated effect of WEE1 kinase inhibitor adavosertib (AZD1775). METHODS AND ANALYSIS: This phase I dose-finding, open-label, multicentre trial aims to determine the highest safe dose of AZD1775 in combination with cisplatin chemotherapy preoperatively (group A) as a window of opportunity trial, and in combination with postoperative cisplatin-based chemoradiation (group B).Modified time-to-event continual reassessment method will determine the recommended dose, recruiting up to 21 patients per group. Primary outcomes are recommended doses with predefined target dose-limiting toxicity probabilities of 25% monitored up to 42 days (group A), and 30% monitored up to 12 weeks (group B). Secondary outcomes are disease-free survival times (groups A and B). Exploratory objectives are evaluation of pharmacodynamic (PD) effects, identification and correlation of potential biomarkers with PD markers of DNA damage, determine rate of resection status and surgical complications for group A; and quality of life in group B. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: Research Ethics Committee, Edgbaston, West Midlands (REC reference 16/WM/0501) initial approval received on 18/01/2017. Results will be disseminated via peer-reviewed publication and presentation at international conferences. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: ISRCTN76291951 and NCT03028766..
(2020). Transplantation of discarded livers following viability testing with normothermic machine perfusion. Nat commun,
There is a limited access to liver transplantation, however, many organs are discarded based on subjective assessment only. Here we report the VITTAL clinical trial (ClinicalTrials.gov number NCT02740608) outcomes, using normothermic machine perfusion (NMP) to objectively assess livers discarded by all UK centres meeting specific high-risk criteria. Thirty-one livers were enroled and assessed by viability criteria based on the lactate clearance to levels ≤2.5 mmol/L within 4 h. The viability was achieved by 22 (71%) organs, that were transplanted after a median preservation time of 18 h, with 100% 90-day survival. During the median follow up of 542 days, 4 (18%) patients developed biliary strictures requiring re-transplantation. This trial demonstrates that viability testing with NMP is feasible and in this study enabled successful transplantation of 71% of discarded livers, with 100% 90-day patient and graft survival; it does not seem to prevent non-anastomotic biliary strictures in livers donated after circulatory death with prolonged warm ischaemia..
ACE Consensus Group,
(2020). The adaptive designs CONSORT extension (ACE) statement: a checklist with explanation and elaboration guideline for reporting randomised trials that use an adaptive design. Trials,
Adaptive designs (ADs) allow pre-planned changes to an ongoing trial without compromising the validity of conclusions and it is essential to distinguish pre-planned from unplanned changes that may also occur. The reporting of ADs in randomised trials is inconsistent and needs improving. Incompletely reported AD randomised trials are difficult to reproduce and are hard to interpret and synthesise. This consequently hampers their ability to inform practice as well as future research and contributes to research waste. Better transparency and adequate reporting will enable the potential benefits of ADs to be realised.This extension to the Consolidated Standards Of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) 2010 statement was developed to enhance the reporting of randomised AD clinical trials. We developed an Adaptive designs CONSORT Extension (ACE) guideline through a two-stage Delphi process with input from multidisciplinary key stakeholders in clinical trials research in the public and private sectors from 21 countries, followed by a consensus meeting. Members of the CONSORT Group were involved during the development process.The paper presents the ACE checklists for AD randomised trial reports and abstracts, as well as an explanation with examples to aid the application of the guideline. The ACE checklist comprises seven new items, nine modified items, six unchanged items for which additional explanatory text clarifies further considerations for ADs, and 20 unchanged items not requiring further explanatory text. The ACE abstract checklist has one new item, one modified item, one unchanged item with additional explanatory text for ADs, and 15 unchanged items not requiring further explanatory text.The intention is to enhance transparency and improve reporting of AD randomised trials to improve the interpretability of their results and reproducibility of their methods, results and inference. We also hope indirectly to facilitate the much-needed knowledge transfer of innovative trial designs to maximise their potential benefits. In order to encourage its wide dissemination this article is freely accessible on the BMJ and Trials journal websites."To maximise the benefit to society, you need to not just do research but do it well" Douglas G Altman..
De Santo, C.
(2019). Combination Lenalidomide and Azacitidine: A Novel Salvage Therapy in Patients Who Relapse After Allogeneic Stem-Cell Transplantation for Acute Myeloid Leukemia. Journal of clinical oncology : official journal of the american society of clinical oncology,
Purpose Salvage options for patients who relapse after allogeneic stem-cell transplantation (allo-SCT) for acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and myelodysplasia (MDS) remain limited, and novel treatment strategies are required. Both lenalidomide (LEN) and azacitidine (AZA) possess significant antitumor activity effect in AML. Administration of LEN post-transplantation is associated with excessive rates of graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), but AZA has been shown to ameliorate GVHD in murine transplantation models. We therefore examined the tolerability and activity of combined LEN/AZA administration in post-transplantation relapse.Patients and methods Twenty-nine patients who had relapsed after allo-SCT for AML (n = 24) or MDS (n = 5) were treated with sequential AZA (75 mg/m 2 for 7 days) followed by escalating doses of LEN on days 10 to 30. Dose allocation and maximum tolerated dose (MTD) estimation were guided by a modified Bayesian continuous reassessment method (CRM).Results Sequential AZA and LEN therapy was well tolerated. The MTD of post-transplantation LEN, in combination with AZA, was determined as 25 mg daily. Three patients developed grade 2 to 4 GVHD. There was no GVHD-related mortality. Seven of 15 (47%) patients achieved a major clinical response after LEN/AZA therapy. CD8+ T cells demonstrated impaired interferon-γ/tumor necrosis factor-α production at relapse, which was not reversed during LEN/AZA administration.Conclusion We conclude LEN can be administered safely post-allograft in conjunction with AZA, and this combination demonstrates clinical activity in relapsed AML/MDS without reversing biologic features of T-cell exhaustion. The use of a CRM model delivered improved efficiency in MTD assessment and provided additional flexibility. Combined LEN/AZA therapy represents a novel and active salvage therapy in patients who had relapsed post-allograft..
(2019). When to keep it simple – adaptive designs are not always useful. Bmc medicine,
(2019). The poor outcome in high molecular risk, hydroxycarbamide-resistant/intolerant ET is not ameliorated by ruxolitinib. Blood,
(2019). How to design a dose-finding study using the continual reassessment method. Bmc medical research methodology,
Introduction The continual reassessment method (CRM) is a model-based design for phase I trials, which aims to find the maximum tolerated dose (MTD) of a new therapy. The CRM has been shown to be more accurate in targeting the MTD than traditional rule-based approaches such as the 3 + 3 design, which is used in most phase I trials. Furthermore, the CRM has been shown to assign more trial participants at or close to the MTD than the 3 + 3 design. However, the CRM's uptake in clinical research has been incredibly slow, putting trial participants, drug development and patients at risk. Barriers to increasing the use of the CRM have been identified, most notably a lack of knowledge amongst clinicians and statisticians on how to apply new designs in practice. No recent tutorial, guidelines, or recommendations for clinicians on conducting dose-finding studies using the CRM are available. Furthermore, practical resources to support clinicians considering the CRM for their trials are scarce.Methods To help overcome these barriers, we present a structured framework for designing a dose-finding study using the CRM. We give recommendations for key design parameters and advise on conducting pre-trial simulation work to tailor the design to a specific trial. We provide practical tools to support clinicians and statisticians, including software recommendations, and template text and tables that can be edited and inserted into a trial protocol. We also give guidance on how to conduct and report dose-finding studies using the CRM.Results An initial set of design recommendations are provided to kick-start the design process. To complement these and the additional resources, we describe two published dose-finding trials that used the CRM. We discuss their designs, how they were conducted and analysed, and compare them to what would have happened under a 3 + 3 design.Conclusions The framework and resources we provide are aimed at clinicians and statisticians new to the CRM design. Provision of key resources in this contemporary guidance paper will hopefully improve the uptake of the CRM in phase I dose-finding trials..
(2018). Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor and autologous CD133-positive stem-cell therapy in liver cirrhosis (REALISTIC): an open-label, randomised, controlled phase 2 trial. The lancet. gastroenterology & hepatology,
Background Results of small-scale studies have suggested that stem-cell therapy is safe and effective in patients with liver cirrhosis, but no adequately powered randomised controlled trials have been done. We assessed the safety and efficacy of granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) and haemopoietic stem-cell infusions in patients with liver cirrhosis.Methods This multicentre, open-label, randomised, controlled phase 2 trial was done in three UK hospitals and recruited patients with compensated liver cirrhosis and MELD scores of 11·0-15·5. Patients were randomly assigned (1:1:1) to receive standard care (control), treatment with subcutaneous G-CSF (lenograstim) 15 μg/kg for 5 days, or treatment with G-CSF for 5 days followed by leukapheresis and intravenous infusion of three doses of CD133-positive haemopoietic stem cells (0·2 × 106 cells per kg per infusion). Randomisation was done by Cancer Research UK Clinical Trials Unit staff with a minimisation algorithm that stratified by trial site and cause of liver disease. The coprimary outcomes were improvement in severity of liver disease (change in MELD) at 3 months and the trend of change in MELD score over time. Analyses were done in the modified intention-to-treat population, which included all patients who received at least one day of treatment. Safety was assessed on the basis of the treatment received. This trial was registered at Current Controlled Trials on Nov 18, 2009; ISRCTN, number 91288089; and the European Clinical Trials Database, number 2009-010335-41.Findings Between May 18, 2010, and Feb 26, 2015, 27 patients were randomly assigned to the standard care, 26 to the G-CSF group, and 28 to the G-CSF plus stem-cell infusion group. Median change in MELD from day 0 to 90 was -0·5 (IQR -1·5 to 1·1) in the standard care group, -0·5 (-1·7 to 0·5) in the G-CSF group, and -0·5 (-1·3 to 1·0) in the G-CSF plus stem-cell infusion group. We found no evidence of differences between the treatment groups and control group in the trends of MELD change over time (p=0·55 for the G-CSF group vs standard care and p=0·75 for the G-CSF plus stem-cell infusion group vs standard care). Serious adverse events were more frequent the in G-CSF and stem-cell infusion group (12 [43%] patients) than in the G-CSF (three [11%] patients) and standard care (three [12%] patients) groups. The most common serious adverse events were ascites (two patients in the G-CSF group and two patients in the G-CSF plus stem-cell infusion group, one of whom was admitted to hospital with ascites twice), sepsis (four patients in the G-CSF plus stem-cell infusion group), and encephalopathy (three patients in the G-CSF plus stem-cell infusion group, one of whom was admitted to hospital with encephalopathy twice). Three patients died, including one in the standard care group (variceal bleed) and two in the G-CSF and stem-cell infusion group (one myocardial infarction and one progressive liver disease).Interpretation G-CSF with or without haemopoietic stem-cell infusion did not improve liver dysfunction or fibrosis and might be associated with increased frequency of adverse events compared with standard care.Funding National Institute of Health Research, The Sir Jules Thorn Charitable Trust..
(2018). A multi-centre phase I trial of the PARP inhibitor olaparib in patients with relapsed chronic lymphocytic leukaemia, T-prolymphocytic leukaemia or mantle cell lymphoma. British journal of haematology,
(2018). Development of Clinical Criteria for Functional Assessment to Predict Primary Nonfunction of High-Risk Livers Using Normothermic Machine Perfusion. Liver transplantation : official publication of the american association for the study of liver diseases and the international liver transplantation society,
Increased use of high-risk allografts is critical to meet the demand for liver transplantation. We aimed to identify criteria predicting viability of organs, currently declined for clinical transplantation, using functional assessment during normothermic machine perfusion (NMP). Twelve discarded human livers were subjected to NMP following static cold storage. Livers were perfused with a packed red cell-based fluid at 37°C for 6 hours. Multilevel statistical models for repeated measures were employed to investigate the trend of perfusate blood gas profiles and vascular flow characteristics over time and the effect of lactate-clearing (LC) and non-lactate-clearing (non-LC) ability of the livers. The relationship of lactate clearance capability with bile production and histological and molecular findings were also examined. After 2 hours of perfusion, median lactate concentrations were 3.0 and 14.6 mmol/L in the LC and non-LC groups, respectively. LC livers produced more bile and maintained a stable perfusate pH and vascular flow >150 and 500 mL/minute through the hepatic artery and portal vein, respectively. Histology revealed discrepancies between subjectively discarded livers compared with objective findings. There were minimal morphological changes in the LC group, whereas non-LC livers often showed hepatocellular injury and reduced glycogen deposition. Adenosine triphosphate levels in the LC group increased compared with the non-LC livers. We propose composite viability criteria consisting of lactate clearance, pH maintenance, bile production, vascular flow patterns, and liver macroscopic appearance. These have been tested successfully in clinical transplantation. In conclusion, NMP allows an objective assessment of liver function that may reduce the risk and permit use of currently unused high-risk livers..
(2018). Adaptive designs in clinical trials: why use them, and how to run and report them. Bmc medicine,
Adaptive designs can make clinical trials more flexible by utilising results accumulating in the trial to modify the trial's course in accordance with pre-specified rules. Trials with an adaptive design are often more efficient, informative and ethical than trials with a traditional fixed design since they often make better use of resources such as time and money, and might require fewer participants. Adaptive designs can be applied across all phases of clinical research, from early-phase dose escalation to confirmatory trials. The pace of the uptake of adaptive designs in clinical research, however, has remained well behind that of the statistical literature introducing new methods and highlighting their potential advantages. We speculate that one factor contributing to this is that the full range of adaptations available to trial designs, as well as their goals, advantages and limitations, remains unfamiliar to many parts of the clinical community. Additionally, the term adaptive design has been misleadingly used as an all-encompassing label to refer to certain methods that could be deemed controversial or that have been inadequately implemented.We believe that even if the planning and analysis of a trial is undertaken by an expert statistician, it is essential that the investigators understand the implications of using an adaptive design, for example, what the practical challenges are, what can (and cannot) be inferred from the results of such a trial, and how to report and communicate the results. This tutorial paper provides guidance on key aspects of adaptive designs that are relevant to clinical triallists. We explain the basic rationale behind adaptive designs, clarify ambiguous terminology and summarise the utility and pitfalls of adaptive designs. We discuss practical aspects around funding, ethical approval, treatment supply and communication with stakeholders and trial participants. Our focus, however, is on the interpretation and reporting of results from adaptive design trials, which we consider vital for anyone involved in medical research. We emphasise the general principles of transparency and reproducibility and suggest how best to put them into practice..
(2017). Embracing model-based designs for dose-finding trials. British journal of cancer,
Background Dose-finding trials are essential to drug development as they establish recommended doses for later-phase testing. We aim to motivate wider use of model-based designs for dose finding, such as the continual reassessment method (CRM).Methods We carried out a literature review of dose-finding designs and conducted a survey to identify perceived barriers to their implementation.Results We describe the benefits of model-based designs (flexibility, superior operating characteristics, extended scope), their current uptake, and existing resources. The most prominent barriers to implementation of a model-based design were lack of suitable training, chief investigators' preference for algorithm-based designs (e.g., 3+3), and limited resources for study design before funding. We use a real-world example to illustrate how these barriers can be overcome.Conclusions There is overwhelming evidence for the benefits of CRM. Many leading pharmaceutical companies routinely implement model-based designs. Our analysis identified barriers for academic statisticians and clinical academics in mirroring the progress industry has made in trial design. Unified support from funders, regulators, and journal editors could result in more accurate doses for later-phase testing, and increase the efficiency and success of clinical drug development. We give recommendations for increasing the uptake of model-based designs for dose-finding trials in academia..
(2017). Ruxolitinib vs best available therapy for ET intolerant or resistant to hydroxycarbamide. Blood,
Treatments for high-risk essential thrombocythemia (ET) address thrombocytosis, disease-related symptoms, as well as risks of thrombosis, hemorrhage, transformation to myelofibrosis, and leukemia. Patients resistant/intolerant to hydroxycarbamide (HC) have a poor outlook. MAJIC (ISRCTN61925716) is a randomized phase 2 trial of ruxolitinib (JAK1/2 inhibitor) vs best available therapy (BAT) in ET and polycythemia vera patients resistant or intolerant to HC. Here, findings of MAJIC-ET are reported, where the modified intention-to-treat population included 58 and 52 patients randomized to receive ruxolitinib or BAT, respectively. There was no evidence of improvement in complete response within 1 year reported in 27 (46.6%) patients treated with ruxolitinib vs 23 (44.2%) with BAT ( P = .40). At 2 years, rates of thrombosis, hemorrhage, and transformation were not significantly different; however, some disease-related symptoms improved in patients receiving ruxolitinib relative to BAT. Molecular responses were uncommon; there were 2 complete molecular responses (CMR) and 1 partial molecular response in CALR- positive ruxolitinib-treated patients. Transformation to myelofibrosis occurred in 1 CMR patient, presumably because of the emergence of a different clone, raising questions about the relevance of CMR in ET patients. Grade 3 and 4 anemia occurred in 19% and 0% of ruxolitinib vs 0% (both grades) in the BAT arm, and grade 3 and 4 thrombocytopenia in 5.2% and 1.7% of ruxolitinib vs 0% (both grades) of BAT-treated patients. Rates of discontinuation or treatment switching did not differ between the 2 trial arms. The MAJIC-ET trial suggests that ruxolitinib is not superior to current second-line treatments for ET. This trial was registered at www.isrctn.com as #ISRCTN61925716..
(2017). Dose Transition Pathways: The Missing Link Between Complex Dose-Finding Designs and Simple Decision-Making. Clinical cancer research : an official journal of the american association for cancer research,
The ever-increasing pace of development of novel therapies mandates efficient methodologies for assessment of their tolerability and activity. Evidence increasingly support the merits of model-based dose-finding designs in identifying the recommended phase II dose compared with conventional rule-based designs such as the 3 + 3 but despite this, their use remains limited. Here, we propose a useful tool, dose transition pathways (DTP), which helps overcome several commonly faced practical and methodologic challenges in the implementation of model-based designs. DTP projects in advance the doses recommended by a model-based design for subsequent patients (stay, escalate, de-escalate, or stop early), using all the accumulated information. After specifying a model with favorable statistical properties, we utilize the DTP to fine-tune the model to tailor it to the trial's specific requirements that reflect important clinical judgments. In particular, it can help to determine how stringent the stopping rules should be if the investigated therapy is too toxic. Its use to design and implement a modified continual reassessment method is illustrated in an acute myeloid leukemia trial. DTP removes the fears of model-based designs as unknown, complex systems and can serve as a handbook, guiding decision-making for each dose update. In the illustrated trial, the seamless, clear transition for each dose recommendation aided the investigators' understanding of the design and facilitated decision-making to enable finer calibration of a tailored model. We advocate the use of the DTP as an integral procedure in the co-development and successful implementation of practical model-based designs by statisticians and investigators. Clin Cancer Res; 23(24); 7440-7. ©2017 AACR ..
(2017). Implementing the EffTox dose-finding design in the Matchpoint trial. Bmc medical research methodology,
Background The Matchpoint trial aims to identify the optimal dose of ponatinib to give with conventional chemotherapy consisting of fludarabine, cytarabine and idarubicin to chronic myeloid leukaemia patients in blastic transformation phase. The dose should be both tolerable and efficacious. This paper describes our experience implementing EffTox in the Matchpoint trial.Methods EffTox is a Bayesian adaptive dose-finding trial design that jointly scrutinises binary efficacy and toxicity outcomes. We describe a nomenclature for succinctly describing outcomes in phase I/II dose-finding trials. We use dose-transition pathways, where doses are calculated for each feasible set of outcomes in future cohorts. We introduce the phenomenon of dose ambivalence, where EffTox can recommend different doses after observing the same outcomes. We also describe our experiences with outcome ambiguity, where the categorical evaluation of some primary outcomes is temporarily delayed.Results We arrived at an EffTox parameterisation that is simulated to perform well over a range of scenarios. In scenarios where dose ambivalence manifested, we were guided by the dose-transition pathways. This technique facilitates planning, and also helped us overcome short-term outcome ambiguity.Conclusions EffTox is an efficient and powerful design, but not without its challenges. Joint phase I/II clinical trial designs will likely become increasingly important in coming years as we further investigate non-cytotoxic treatments and streamline the drug approval process. We hope this account of the problems we faced and the solutions we used will help others implement this dose-finding clinical trial design.Trial registration Matchpoint was added to the European Clinical Trials Database ( https://www.clinicaltrialsregister.eu/ctr-search/trial/2012-005629-65/GB ) on 2013-12-30..
(2017). Viability testing and transplantation of marginal livers (VITTAL) using normothermic machine perfusion: study protocol for an open-label, non-randomised, prospective, single-arm trial. Bmj open,
INTRODUCTION:The use of marginal or extended criteria donor livers is increasing. These organs carry a greater risk of initial dysfunction and early failure, as well as inferior long-term outcomes. As such, many are rejected due to a perceived risk of use and use varies widely between centres. Ex situ normothermic machine perfusion of the liver (NMP-L) may enable the safe transplantation of organs that meet defined objective criteria denoting their high-risk status and are currently being declined for use by all the UK transplant centres. METHODS AND ANALYSIS:Viability testing and transplantation of marginal livers is an open-label, non-randomised, prospective, single-arm trial designed to determine whether currently unused donor livers can be salvaged and safely transplanted with equivalent outcomes in terms of patient survival. The procured rejected livers must meet predefined criteria that objectively denote their marginal condition. The liver is subjected to NMP-L following a period of static cold storage. Organs metabolising lactate to ≤2.5 mmol/L within 4 hours of the perfusion commencing in combination with two or more of the following parameters-bile production, metabolism of glucose, a hepatic arterial flow rate ≥150 mL/min and a portal venous flow rate ≥500 mL/min, a pH ≥7.30 and/or maintain a homogeneous perfusion-will be considered viable and transplanted into a suitable consented recipient. The coprimary outcome measures are the success rate of NMP-L to produce a transplantable organ and 90-day patient post-transplant survival. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION:The protocol was approved by the National Research Ethics Service (London-Dulwich Research Ethics Committee, 16/LO/1056), the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency and is endorsed by the National Health Service Blood and Transplant Research, Innovation and Novel Technologies Advisory Group. The findings of this trial will be disseminated through national and international presentations and peer-reviewed publications. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER:NCT02740608; Pre-results..
(2016). Planar Minimization Diagrams via Subdivision with Applications to Anisotropic Voronoi Diagrams. Computer graphics forum,
pp. 229-247 (19).
(2016). Tolerability and Clinical Activity of Post-Transplantation Azacitidine in Patients Allografted for Acute Myeloid Leukemia Treated on the RICAZA Trial. Biology of blood and marrow transplantation,
(2016). Examining the sources of occupational stress in an emergency department. Occupational medicine (oxford, england),
Background Previous work has established that health care staff, in particular emergency department (ED) personnel, experience significant occupational stress but the underlying stressors have not been well quantified. Such data inform interventions that can reduce cases of occupational mental illness, burnout, staff turnover and early retirement associated with cumulative stress.Aims To develop, implement and evaluate a questionnaire examining the origins of occupational stress in the ED.Methods A questionnaire co-designed by an occupational health practitioner and ED management administered to nursing, medical and support staff in the ED of a large English teaching hospital in 2015. The questionnaire assessed participants' demographic characteristics and perceptions of stress across three dimensions (demand-control-support, effort-reward and organizational justice). Work-related stressors in ED staff were compared with those of an unmatched control group from the acute ear, nose and throat (ENT) and neurology directorate.Results A total of 104 (59%) ED staff returned questionnaires compared to 72 staff (67%) from the acute ENT/neurology directorate. The ED respondents indicated lower levels of job autonomy, management support and involvement in organizational change, but not work demand. High levels of effort-reward imbalance and organizational injustice were reported by both groups.Conclusions Our findings suggest that internal ED interventions to improve workers' job control, increase support from management and involvement in organizational change may reduce work stress. The high levels of effort-reward imbalance and organizational injustice reported by both groups may indicate that wider interventions beyond the ED are also needed to address these issues..
(2015). REpeated AutoLogous Infusions of STem cells In Cirrhosis (REALISTIC): a multicentre, phase II, open-label, randomised controlled trial of repeated autologous infusions of granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (GCSF) mobilised CD133+ bone marrow stem cells in patients with cirrhosis A study protocol for a randomised controlled trial. Bmj open,
(2014). Challenges of clinical trial design for targeted agents against pediatric leukemias. Front oncol,
The past 40 years have seen significant improvements in both event-free and overall survival for children with acute lymphoblastic and acute myeloid leukemia (ALL and AML, respectively). Serial national and international clinical trials have optimized the use of conventional chemotherapeutic drugs and, along with improvements in supportive care that have enabled the delivery of more intensive regimens, have been responsible for the major improvements in patient outcome seen over the past few decades. However, the benefits of dose intensification have likely now been maximized, and over the same period, the identification of new cytotoxic drugs has been limited. Therefore, challenges remain if survival is to be improved further. In pediatric ALL, 5-year-survival rates of over 85% have been achieved with risk-stratified therapy, but a notable minority of patients will still not be cured. In pediatric AML, different challenges remain. A slower improvement in overall survival has taken place in this patient population. Despite the obvious morphological heterogeneity of AML blasts, biological stratification is comparatively limited, and translation into risk-stratified therapeutic approaches has only best characterized by the use of retinoic acid for t(15;17)-positive AML. Even where prognostic markers have been identified, limited therapeutic options or multi-drug resistance of AML blasts has limited the impact on patient benefit. For both, the acute morbidities of current treatment remain significant and may be life-threatening alone. In addition, the Childhood Cancer Survivor Study (CCSS) highlighted many leukemia survivors develop one or more chronic medical conditions attributable to treatment (1, 2). As the biology of leukemogenesis has become better understood, key molecules and intracellular pathways have been identified that offer the possibility of targeting directly the leukemia cells while sparing normal cells. Consequently, there is now a drive to develop novel leukemia-specific or "targeted" therapies. These new classes of drugs will have mechanisms of action, toxicities, and therapeutic indices quite different from conventional cytotoxic drugs previously encountered, thus rendering current clinical trial methodologies inappropriate. Clinical trial methods will need to be adapted to accommodate these features of these new classes of drugs. This review will address the challenges and some of the techniques for developing clinical trials for targeted therapies. .
(2013). Implementation of adaptive dose-finding designs in two early phase haematological trials: clinical, operational, and methodological challenges. Trials,
(2013). Practical implementation of an adaptive phase I/II design in chronic myeloid leukaemia: evaluating both efficacy and toxicity using the EffTox design. Trials,
(2013). Screened selection design for randomised phase II oncology trials: an example in chronic lymphocytic leukaemia. Bmc medical research methodology,
(2012). A Comparison of Short-term and Long-term Air Pollution Exposure Associations with Mortality in Two Cohorts in Scotland. Environmental health perspectives,
(2012). Comparison of models for estimation of long-term exposure to air pollution in cohort studies. Atmospheric environment,
(2012). Association between long-term exposure to air pollution and specific causes of mortality in Scotland. Occupational and environmental medicine,
(2011). Screened selection design for randomised phase II oncology trials: an example in chronic lymphocytic leukaemia. Trials,
(2010). Is There a Role for Adjuvant Hysterectomy after Suboptimal Concurrent Chemoradiation in Cervical Carcinoma?. Clinical oncology,
(2006). Acute Supraclavicular Skin Toxicity in Patients Undergoing Radiotherapy for Breast Cancer: An Evaluation of the ‘T’-Grip Method of Patient Positioning. Clinical oncology,
(2006). Acute small bowel toxicity and preoperative chemoradiotherapy for rectal cancer: Investigating dose–volume relationships and role for inverse planning. International journal of radiation oncology*biology*physics,
(2002). Tolerability of bolusversuscontinuous gastric feeding in brain-injured patients. Neurological research,
(2002). Use of real-time PCR to measure Epstein–Barr virus genomes in whole blood. Journal of immunological methods,
Targeting synovial fibroblast proliferation in rheumatoid arthritis (TRAFIC): an open-label, dose-finding, phase 1b trial. The lancet. rheumatology,
Background Current rheumatoid arthritis therapies target immune inflammation and are subject to ceiling effects. Seliciclib is an orally available cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor that suppresses proliferation of synovial fibroblasts-cells not yet targeted in rheumatoid arthritis. Part 1 of this phase 1b/2a trial aimed to establish the maximum tolerated dose of seliciclib in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis despite ongoing treatment with TNF inhibitors, and to evaluate safety and pharmacokinetics.Methods Phase 1b of the TRAFIC study was a non-randomised, open-label, dose-finding trial done in rheumatology departments in five UK National Health Service hospitals. Eligible patients (aged ≥18 years) fulfilled the 1987 American College of Rheumatology (ACR) or the 2010 ACR-European League Against Rheumatism classification criteria for rheumatoid arthritis and had moderate to severe disease activity (a Disease Activity Score for 28 joints [DAS28] of ≥3·2) despite stable treatment with anti-TNF therapy for at least 3 months before enrolment. Participants were recruited sequentially to a maximum of seven cohorts of three participants each, designated to receive seliciclib 200 mg, 400 mg, 600 mg, 800 mg, or 1000 mg administered in 200 mg oral capsules. Sequential cohorts received doses determined by a restricted, one-stage Bayesian continual reassessment model, which determined the maximum tolerated dose (the primary outcome) based on a target dose-limiting toxicity rate of 35%. Seliciclib maximum concentration (C max ) and area under the plasma concentration time curve 0-6 h (AUC 0-6 ) were measured. This study is registered with ISRCTN, ISRCTN36667085.Findings Between Oct 8, 2015, and Aug 15, 2017, 37 patients were screened and 15 were enrolled to five cohorts and received seliciclib, after which the trial steering committee and the data monitoring committee determined that the maximum tolerated dose could be defined. In addition to a TNF inhibitor, ten (67%) enrolled patients were taking conventional synthetic disease modifying antirheumatic drugs. The maximum tolerated dose of seliciclib was 400 mg, with an estimated dose-limiting toxicity probability of 0·35 (90% posterior probability interval 0·18-0·52). Two serious adverse events occurred (one acute kidney injury in a patient receiving the 600 mg dose and one drug-induced liver injury in a patient receiving the 400 mg dose), both considered to be related to seliciclib and consistent with its known safety profile. 65 non-serious adverse events occurred during the trial, 50 of which were considered to be treatment related. Most treatment-related adverse events were mild; 20 of the treatment-related non-serious adverse events contributed to dose-limiting toxicities. There were no deaths. Average C max and AUC 0-6 were two-times higher in participants developing dose-limiting toxicities.Interpretation The maximum tolerated dose of seliciclib has been defined for rheumatoid arthritis refractory to TNF blockade. No unexpected safety concerns were identified to preclude ongoing clinical evaluation in a formal efficacy trial.Funding UK Medical Research Council, Cyclacel, Research into Inflammatory Arthritis Centre (Versus Arthritis), and the National Institute of Health Research Newcastle and Birmingham Biomedical Research Centres and Clinical Research Facilities..
De Bono, J.
Study protocol for a randomised controlled trial of enhanced informed consent compared to standard informed consent to improve patient understanding of early phase oncology clinical trials (CONSENT). Bmj open,
Introduction Early phase cancer clinical trials have become increasingly complicated in terms of patient selection and trial procedures—this is reflected in the increasing length of participant information sheets (PIS). Informed consent for early phase clinical trials has been contentious due to the potential ethical issues associated with performing experimental research on a terminally ill population which has exhausted standard treatment options. Empirical studies have demonstrated significant gaps in patient understanding regarding the nature and intent of these trials. This study aims to test whether enhanced informed consent for patient education can improve patient scores on a validated questionnaire testing clinical trial comprehension. Methods and analysis This is a randomised controlled trial that will allocate patients who are eligible to participate in one of four investigator-initiated clinical trials at the Royal Marsden Drug Development Unit to either a standard arm or an experimental arm, stratified by age and educational level. The standard arm will involve the full length trial PIS, followed by electronic or paper administration of the Quality of Informed Consent Questionnaire Parts A and B (QuIC-A and QuIC-B). The experimental arm will involve the full length trial PIS, exposure to a two-page study aid and 10 online educational videos, followed by administration of the QuIC-A and QuIC-B. The primary endpoint will be the difference (using a one-sided two-sample t-test) in the QuIC-A score, which measures objective understanding, between the standard and experimental arm. Accrual target is at least 17 patients per arm to detect an 8 point difference (80% power, alpha 0.05). Ethics and dissemination Ethics approval was granted by the National Health Service Health Research Authority on 15 June 2020—IRAS Project ID 277065, Protocol Number CCR5165, REC Reference 20/EE/0155. Results will be disseminated via publication in a relevant journal. Trial registration number NCT04407676; Pre-results..
Trends in Patient-Reported Outcome (PRO) use in Early Phase Dose-finding Oncology Trials (DFOT)- an Analysis of ClinicalTrials gov. Cancer medicine,
De Bono, J.
The need for reporting guidelines for early phase dose-finding trials: Dose-Finding CONSORT Extension. Nature medicine,
Sjögren's histopathology workshop group (appendix) from ESSENTIAL (EULAR Sjögren's syndrome study group),
Standardisation of labial salivary gland histopathology in clinical trials in primary Sjögren's syndrome. Annals of the rheumatic diseases,
Labial salivary gland (LSG) biopsy is used in the classification of primary Sjögren's syndrome (PSS) and in patient stratification in clinical trials. It may also function as a biomarker. The acquisition of tissue and histological interpretation is variable and needs to be standardised for use in clinical trials. A modified European League Against Rheumatism consensus guideline development strategy was used. The steering committee of the ad hoc working group identified key outstanding points of variability in LSG acquisition and analysis. A 2-day workshop was held to develop consensus where possible and identify points where further discussion/data was needed. These points were reviewed by a subgroup of experts on PSS histopathology and then circulated via an online survey to 50 stakeholder experts consisting of rheumatologists, histopathologists and oral medicine specialists, to assess level of agreement (0-10 scale) and comments. Criteria for agreement were a mean score ≥6/10 and 75% of respondents scoring ≥6/10. Thirty-nine (78%) experts responded and 16 points met criteria for agreement. These points are focused on tissue requirements, identification of the characteristic focal lymphocytic sialadenitis, calculation of the focus score, identification of germinal centres, assessment of the area of leucocyte infiltration, reporting standards and use of prestudy samples for clinical trials. We provide standardised consensus guidance for the use of labial salivary gland histopathology in the classification of PSS and in clinical trials and identify areas where further research is required to achieve evidence-based consensus..
De Lavallade, H.
Ponatinib with fludarabine, cytarabine, idarubicin, and granulocyte colony-stimulating factor chemotherapy for patients with blast-phase chronic myeloid leukaemia (MATCHPOINT): a single-arm, multicentre, phase 1/2 trial. The lancet haematology,
Implementation of platform trials in the COVID-19 pandemic: A rapid review. Contemporary clinical trials,
A Phase 1, Dose Escalation Study of Guadecitabine (SGI-110) in Combination with Pembrolizumab in Patients with Solid Tumours. Journal for immunotherapy of cancer,
Personalized (N-of-1) Trials for Patient-Centered Treatments of Multimorbidity. Harvard data science review,
Lee Aiyegbusi, O.
Using Patient-Reported Outcomes in Dose-Finding Oncology Trials: Surveys of Key Stakeholders and the National Cancer Research Institute Consumer Forum. The oncologist,
Patient-reported adverse events may be a useful adjunct for assessing a drug’s tolerability in dose-finding oncology trials (DFOT). We conducted surveys of international stakeholders and the National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI) Consumer Forum to understand attitudes about patient-reported outcome (PRO) use in DFOT.
A 35-question survey of clinicians, trial managers, statisticians, funders, and regulators of DFOT was distributed via professional bodies examining experience using PROs, benefits/barriers, and their potential role in defining tolerable doses. An 8-question survey of the NCRI Consumer Forum explored similar themes.
International survey: 112 responses from 15 September–30 November 2020; 103 trialists [48 clinicians (42.9%), 38 statisticians (34.0%), 17 trial managers (15.2%)], 7 regulators (6.3%), 2 funders (1.8%)]. Most trialists had no experience designing (73, 70.9%), conducting (52, 50.5%), or reporting (88, 85.4%) PROs in DFOT. Most agreed that PROs could identify new toxicities (75, 67.0%) and provide data on the frequency (86, 76.8%) and duration (81, 72.3%) of toxicities. The top 3 barriers were lack of guidance regarding PRO selection (73/103, 70.9%), missing PRO data (71/103, 68.9%), and overburdening staff (68/103, 66.0%). NCRI survey: 57 responses on 21 March 2021. A total of 28 (49.1%) were willing to spend <15 min/day completing PROs. Most (55, 96.5%) preferred to complete PROs online. 61 (54.5%) trialists and 57 (100%) consumers agreed that patient-reported adverse events should be used to inform dose-escalation decisions.
Stakeholders reported minimal experience using PROs in DFOT but broadly supported their use. Guidelines are needed to standardize PRO selection, analysis, and reporting in DFOT.