What can heart failure trialists learn from oncology trialists?

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Globally, there has been little change in mortality rates from cardiovascular (CV) diseases or cancers over the past two decades (1997-2018). This is especially true for heart failure (HF) where 5-year mortality rates remain as high as 45-55%. In the same timeframe, the proportion of drug revenue, and regulatory drug approvals for cancer drugs, far out paces those for CV drugs. In 2018, while cancer drugs made 27% of Food and Drug Administration drug approvals, only 1% of drug approvals was for a CV drug, and over this entire 20 year span, only four drugs were approved for HF in the USA. Cardiovascular trialists need to reassess the design, execution, and purpose of CV clinical trials. In the area of oncology research, trials are much smaller, follow-up is shorter, and targeted therapies are common. Cardiovascular diseases and cancer are the two most common causes of death globally, and although they differ substantially, this review evaluates whether some elements of oncology research may be applicable in the CV arena. As one of the most underserved CV diseases, the review focuses on aspects of cancer research that may be applicable to HF research with the aim of streamlining the clinical trial process and decreasing the time and cost required to bring safe, effective, treatments to patients who need them. The paper is based on discussions among clinical trialists, industry representatives, regulatory authorities, and patients, which took place at the Cardiovascular Clinical Trialists Workshop in Washington, DC, on 8 December 2019 (https://www.globalcvctforum.com/2019 (14 September 2020)).

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Authors: Faiez Zannad, Gad Cotter, Angeles Alonso Garcia, Suzanne George, Beth Davison, Gemma Figtree, Krishna Prasad, Frank Rockhold, Richard L Schilsky, Norman Stockbridge, Bertram Pitt, Javed Butler


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