[open-science] OpenTrials launches beta version today at the World Health Summit

Lieke Ploeger lieke.ploeger at okfn.org
Mon Oct 10 08:53:38 UTC 2016

OpenTrials launches beta version today at the World Health Summit

For immediate release

Open Knowledge International is delighted to announce the launch of the
public preview beta version of OpenTrials <http://opentrials.net/> at a
panel session on ‘Fostering Open Science in Global Health’ at the World
Health Summit today, 10 October 2016, the world’s foremost forum for
strategic questions of Global Health.  OpenTrials is an open, online
database of information about the world’s clinical trials funded by the
Laura and John Arnold Foundation through the Center for Open Science. The
project, which is designed to increase transparency and improve access to
research, is directed by Dr. Ben Goldacre <https://twitter.com/bengoldacre>,
an internationally known leader on clinical transparency, and is being
built by Open Knowledge International.

OpenTrials works like a search engine, with advanced search options for
filtering results by criteria such as drug and disease area. All data and
documents for each trial included are “threaded” together and presented
alongside each other. At the World Health Summit, the team will be
demonstrating how the OpenTrials interface works, including how to explore
trials and filter results by criteria such as drug and disease area.  They
will also demonstrate the power of linking clinical trial information
together, showing how it can be used to highlight important discrepancies
in the data.

[image: Screen Shot 2016-10-05 at 13.08.41.png]

Explore the database at  opentrials.net

We want the information provided on OpenTrials to inform decision-making
and lead to better medical services worldwide. We expect a range of
potential uses for the platform:


   A public health researcher could find out more about the range of trials
   on a drug, searching by various criteria to match a specific population.


   A doctor interested in critical appraisal of research papers could see
   if sources of bias for specific trials have already been assessed by

   A researcher could see if the same trial reports somewhat different
   methods or results in different places.


   A patient interested in participating in a trial for their condition
   could identify trials in their geographical area which are enrolling.

A crowdsourcing functionality allows users to contribute data and documents
and to provide feedback on the accuracy of trial information.

OpenTrials currently extracts and displays data from ClinicalTrials.gov, EU
CTR, HRA, WHO ICTRP, and PubMed, and risk of bias assessments from the
Cochrane Schizophrenia group. After the beta launch, we plan to integrate
systematic review data from Epistemonikos and other sources. There are
seven additional sources of data that have been extracted, but can't
currently be displayed because of licensing issues - we are working with
these sources of data to get permission to publish. We'll keep
updating the OpenTrials
as they become available.

“There have been numerous positive statements about the need for greater
transparency on information about clinical trials, over many years, but it
has been almost impossible to track and audit exactly what is missing, or
easily identify discrepancies in information about trials” explained Dr.
Goldacre, the project’s Chief Investigator and a Senior Clinical Research
Fellow in the Centre for Evidence Based Medicine at the University of
Oxford. “This project aims to draw together everything that is known around
each clinical trial. The end product will provide valuable information for
patients, doctors, researchers, and policymakers—not just on individual
trials, but also on how whole sectors, researchers, companies, and funders
are performing. It has the potential to show who is failing to share
information appropriately, who is doing well, and how standards can be

"OpenTrials is an important step towards ensuring researchers, journalists,
and patient groups have access to the medical information they need,” said
Pavel Richter, CEO of Open Knowledge International. “Through the OpenTrials
platform, researchers can advance science more quickly, doctors can easily
find the latest evidence to improve services, and patients can locate
information about pressing public health issues. OpenTrials is a great
example of the work we are doing at Open Knowledge International to equip
civil society organisations with the tools and information they need to
address social problems and improve people's lives."

The first phase of the Open Trials project is scheduled for completion in
March 2017. For project updates, please follow @opentrials
<https://twitter.com/opentrials> on twitter or get in touch with us at
opentrials at okfn.org.  A Hack Day (a World Health Summit Satellite event)
took place on 8 October in Berlin. For more details, see here:

Further information on speakers and topics of the World Health Summit 2016:



The World Health Summit is open to media representatives:


Editor’s notes:

Ben Goldacre

Ben is a doctor, academic, writer, and broadcaster, and currently a Senior
Clinical Research Fellow in the Centre for Evidence Based Medicine at the
University of Oxford. His blog is at www.badscience.net and he is
@bengoldacre <https://twitter.com/bengoldacre> on twitter. Read more here
<https://www.phc.ox.ac.uk/team/ben-goldacre>. His academic and policy work
is in epidemiology and evidence based medicine, where he works on various
problems including variation in care, better uses of routinely collected
electronic health data, access to clinical trial data, efficient trial
design, and retracted papers. In policy work, he co-authored this
influential Cabinet Office paper
advocating for randomised trials in government, and setting out mechanisms
to drive this forwards. He is the co-founder of the AllTrials
<http://www.alltrials.net/> campaign. He engages with policy makers
Alongside this he also works in public engagement, writing and broadcasting
for a general audience on problems in evidence based medicine. His books
have sold over 600,000 copies.

Open Knowledge International



Open Knowledge International is a global non-profit organisation focussing
on realising open data’s value to society by helping civil society groups
access and use data to take action on social problems. Open Knowledge
International addresses this in three steps: 1) we show the value of open
data for the work of civil society organizations; 2) we provide
organisations with the tools and skills to effectively use open data; and
3) we make government information systems responsive to civil society.

The Laura and John Arnold Foundation


LJAF is a private foundation committed to producing substantial,
widespread, and lasting reforms that will maximize opportunities and
minimize injustice in our society. Its strategic investments are currently
focused on criminal justice, education, public accountability,
evidence-based policy, and research integrity. LJAF has offices in Houston,
New York City and Washington D.C. <http://www.arnoldfoundation.org>



COS is a non-profit technology company providing free, open source software
and services to increase inclusivity and transparency of research. COS
supports shifting incentives and practices to align more closely with
scientific values.  COS develops the Open Science Framework <http://osf.io/>
as an infrastructure to enable a more open and transparent research
workflow across all of the sciences.

World Health Summit

www.worldhealthsummit.org <http://www.worldhealthsummit.org/the-summit.html>

Under the high patronage of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French
President François Hollande and European Commission President Jean-Claude
Juncker, the WHS attracts about 1,800 participants from more than 80
countries. It is the premiere international platform for  exploring
strategic developments and decisions in the area of healthcare.

Lieke Ploeger

Communications Officer  | skype: laploeger  |  @liekeploeger

Open Knowledge  - See how data can change the world
http://okfn.org/  |  @okfn <http://twitter.com/OKFN>  |  OKF on Facebook
<https://www.facebook.com/OKFNetwork>  |  Blog <http://blog.okfn.org/>
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