It may go without saying that we design our clinical trials in a manner that will achieve our objectives while requiring the least amount of resources. It is less obvious just how well statistics can help us do it.
There are numerous bio statistical methods that can make your trial more efficient, offering considerable savings of both time and money. Following are a few examples of how to assess the most fitting primary efficacy endpoint using bio statistical methods:
The ICH E9 guideline states:
“The primary variable (‘target’ variable, primary endpoint) should be the variable capable of providing the most clinically relevant and convincing evidence directly related to the primary objective of the trial.”
In many indications the primary efficacy endpoint is well established and you will be constrained to select the standard endpoint. Yet even in these cases you might have some control over your design to make it most efficient. Specifically, it would behoove you to ask and answer the following questions:
In cases where you have more control over endpoint selection the following considerations will also be important and have been demonstrated to reduce sample size by 10% to 50% and greatly increase power for statistical testing:
Additional methods for increasing your chance for success in a trial with fewer resources include:
All of the methods described above, used in combination or alone, will increase your trial’s efficiency by reducing costs and increasing probability of success.
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