Dr. Doroshow on the Importance of Modernizing Clinical Trials After COVID-19


James H. Doroshow, MD, discusses the importance of modernizing clinical trials in the post–COVID-19 era.

James H. Doroshow, MD, senior investigator, Developmental Therapeutics Branch (DTB), director, Division of Cancer Treatment and Diagnosis, deputy director for clinical and translational research, head, Oxidative Signaling and Molecular Therapeutics Group, DTB, Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute (NCI), discusses the importance of modernizing clinical trials in the post–COVID-19 era.

During week 2 of the 2021 AACR Annual Meeting, Doroshow, as well as a panel of discussants, participated in a virtual panel to shed light on oncology clinical trial modifications and guidelines that have emerged during the COVID-19 pandemic. Overall, the panelists agreed that many of the patient-centered changes made to clinical trial protocols should be permanently retained after the pandemic, Doroshow explains.

Additionally, it is important that clinical trials do not revert to standard protocols that have been utilized for decades, says Doroshow. Although this will be difficult, input from patient advocacy communities and the NCI could help avoid regression to how clinical trials were conducted before the pandemic, Doroshow explains.

Ultimately, long-term clinical trial modernization will require additional evidence to show that the studies are safe and capable of proving the efficacy of novel therapies, Doroshow says. It is likely that modern clinical trials will be cost effective, more representative of diverse patient populations, and a significant advance in the field, concludes Doroshow.

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