Close

Learn more about clinical trials

Learn More

A medicine, how is it done?

Several steps are necessary for drug development.
1. Recherche en laboratoire
Découverte de la molécule M-XX
pouvant devenir un médicament pour traiter le cancer
1. Recherche en laboratoire
2. Recherche préclinique
Évaluation de la molécule M-XX
chez les animaux
2. Recherche préclinique
3. Essais cliniques
Évaluation de la molécule M-XX chez l'humain

Phase 1 : Est-ce sécuritaire?

Phase 2 : Y a-t-il des signes d'efficacité?

Phase 3 : Est-ce meilleur que ce qui existe déjà?
3. Essais cliniques
4. Autorisation de Santé Canada
Évaluation et approbation
(ou non) de M-XX comme nouveau médicament
4. Autorisation de Santé Canada
5. Fabrication et distribution
Le nouveau médicament est dorénavant disponible

Phase 4 : Que se passe-t-il à long terme?
5. Fabrication et distribution

Are you familiar with the 4 phases of clinical trials in oncology?

Phase 1 : Is it safe?

In general, only a few people with cancer are recruited. They often suffer from advanced cancer and have generally received all available treatments that can be offered. Phase 1 is used to determine whether an experimental treatment is safe for patients. More specifically, it is about finding the highest dose of treatment that can be given without serious adverse reactions. The goal might also be to:

Phase 2: Does it do what it is supposed to do?

Usually, a group of patients with the same type of cancer receives the experimental treatment. Phase 2 is to test the efficacy of the product and determine the optimal dose. In some studies, patients may be randomly assigned to different treatment groups. These groups may receive different doses or follow treatment in different ways to determine what is safest and most effective. The goal might also be to:

Phase 3: How does it compare?

Most Phase 3 clinical trials are conducted with a large number of patients who have the same type of cancer or, more rarely, with patients who have different types of cancer. Phase 3 is used to compare the experimental treatment with the treatment usually used (called “reference treatment” or “standard treatment”). Phase 3 trials are comparative trials. Most of the time, two or more groups of patients are randomized: one will receive the reference treatment and the other the experimental treatment. It is not the doctor who decides which of the treatments his/her patient will receive. Key points of Phase 3 clinical trials:

Phase 4: What happens in the long term?

Once a new treatment is approved and available to the entire population, its long-term effects are studied.

How am I protected during a clinical trial?

Many measures are in place to protect clinical trial participants. Every effort is made to minimize the risks. The following is a list of protective measures used to ensure the safety of clinical trial participants.

Good clinical practice

Good clinical practice

The research team must ensure compliance with good clinical practice during the course of the trial. These rules ensure the protection of the participants and the quality of the results of the test.

Health Canada Regulations

Health Canada Regulations

Researchers must conduct their clinical trials in accordance with the law. This includes allowing inspections to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements.

Plus d'information ici

Scientific and medical surveillance

Scientific and medical surveillance

It allows to stop the test if the expected benefits are not there, or if the adverse effects are more harmful than expected.

Informed consent

Informed consent

The participant consent process includes the use of an informed consent form that clearly explains the clinical trial, benefits and anticipated risks and describes the rights and responsibilities of the participants.

Plus d'information ici

Research Ethics Board

Research Ethics Board

The Research Ethics Board evaluates and authorizes clinical trials before they begin and continue until they are completed.

More information here
DIFFICULT TO FIND YOUR WAY AROUND?

You are not alone, the experienced oncology nurses of the Quebec Cancer Foundation and the information specialists of the Canadian Cancer Society can help you in your search: