Researchers use rigorous approach to establish the strength of lab data to inform stem cell clinical trial

December 7, 2016

While many exciting discoveries are made in laboratories every year, few ever become successful human treatments. This may be because often the decision to start a human trial is based on a few laboratory studies instead of considering all the available evidence. Before launching the first human trial using stem cells to treat septic shock, Drs. Manoj Lalu, Lauralyn McIntyre, and colleagues performed a systematic review to evaluate all existing laboratory evidence of this treatment. Their review, published in eLife,found 18 publications that used these stem cells to treat animal models of septic shock and confirmed a consistent reduction in deaths with the treatment. These promising results supported their decision to proceed with their world-first clinical trial. They hope their method of considering all the laboratory evidence first can help researchers launch more successful human trials in the future.

Authors: Manoj M. Lalu, Katrina J. Sullivan, Shirley H.J. Mei, David Moher, Alexander Straus, Dean A. Fergusson, Duncan J. Stewart, Mazen Jazi, Malcolm MacLeod, Brent Winston, John Marshall, Brian Hutton, Keith R. Walley, Lauralyn McIntyre, on behalf of the Canadian Critical Care Translational Biology Group.

Funders: This research received no external funding, but all researchers at The Ottawa Hospital are supported by The Ottawa Hospital Foundation.

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