Preclinical research often hypes cancer drugs

Researchers at McGill say that the preclinical research field is badly skewed, favoring the publication of positive results in a way that has helped inspire more poorly designed studies for new therapies--studies which often can't be reproduced later. And they used Sutent (sunitinib) as a case study. "Only a fraction of drugs that show promise in animals end up proving safe and effective in humans," says lead researcher Dr. Jonathan Kimmelman, who directs the STREAM (Studies in Translation, Ethics and Medicine) research group. "An important reason is because studies in animals are often not well designed, and because positive results have a higher chance of being published. They end up skewing what we think we know about the potential of a drug." Release