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May 17, 2013 -- Monday 20th May 2013 is International Clinical Trials day. This annual event celebrates the anniversary of the very first clinical trial that was carried out by James Lind in 1747. 2013 also marks the 21st anniversary of Synexus - the world's largest multinational company dedicated to the successful recruitment and running of clinical studies. Synexus will be marking both occasions by sharing celebratory Synexus cupcakes with patients who visit each of its seven Dedicated Research Centres in the UK on Monday 20th May.
Clinical trials enable the development of all medical treatments for everyday ailments through to life-threatening conditions.
James Lind carried out trials whilst at sea on board the ship Salisbury in 1747. Seaman with scurvy were given the same general diet but this was supplemented with various additional items, including cider, elixir vitriol (sulphuric acid), vinegar (acetic acid), seawater, nutmeg and most importantly oranges and lemons. In just six days, those patients given oranges and lemons were fit for duty. Although the results were clear, Lind hesitated to recommend the use of oranges and lemons because they were too expensive. It was nearly 50 years before the Navy eventually made lemon juice a compulsory part of the seafarer's diet, and this was soon replaced by lime juice because it was cheaper. This is why British sailors, and later the British in general, were called 'limeys' by the Americans.
Today clinical trials operate in a highly regulated industry. Prior to any clinical trial being undertaken, approval must be sought from the appropriate regulatory authorities and ethical committees. In the UK, this is the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and the Research Ethics Committee (REC). It’s after the relevant scientific, regulatory and ethical bodies have approved the protocol that clinical studies in the human population can go ahead.
Whilst clinical studies have advanced since the times of James Lind, their importance and the vital role they play in the future of medicine is no less significant. Lind would certainly be proud of his legacy if he were able to visit a modern clinical research centre run by a company such as Synexus.
Since its launch 21 years ago Synexus has grown from a small clinic adjoining founder Dr Smith's surgery to the largest multinational organisation dedicated to the recruitment of patients and running of clinical trials at its 25 clinics across the world, seven of which are in the UK.
Each year, thousands of patients take part in clinical studies at Synexus’ Dedicated Clinical Research Centres. There are many different studies running at each of the Centres throughout the year including potential treatments for conditions such as osteoporosis, raised cholesterol, insomnia, asthma, diabetes and migraine.
Those who contact Synexus may have an existing medical condition and wish to contribute to further research into its treatment and cure. Others may be related to or know someone in such a situation. Others may be driven purely by altruism and a commitment to extending human knowledge and contributing to the health of future generations.
Participating in a Synexus clinical study means patients receive increased medical attention and may benefit from medications that aren’t yet generally available to other sufferers of their condition. It is also a rewarding experience and usually gives patients a feeling of control over their condition.
When people contact or visit Synexus there is no obligation for them to participate in a study and if they do decide to take part, their GP will be kept fully informed of their involvement. Not all studies are paid, but some do reimburse the patients for their time and all reimburse patients for out of pocket travelling expenses.
If you would like to find out more about clinical trials and the studies that Synexus is currently involved with:
-- Visit www.improvinghealth.com for more information
-- Or contact your nearest Dedicated Clinical Research Centre quoting the relevant reference number:
Lancashire 01772 344620 Ref no: 13812
Manchester 0161 662 5044 Ref no: 13813
Merseyside 0151 550 9951 Ref no: 13814
Midlands 0121 226 9002 Ref no: 13815
Scotland 0141 270 2587 Ref no: 13816
Thames Valley 0118 378 9923 Ref no: 13817
Wales 0292 0949001 Ref no: 13818
-- Or you can register your interest online at http://www.improvinghealth.com/go/join/
-- Synexus is the world’s largest multi-national company dedicated to the recruitment and running of clinical trials.
-- More information can be found at www.improvinghealth.com / www.improvinghealthtogether.com / www.synexus.com
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