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Despite strict rules requiring clinical trial reporting, about half of the clinical trials in the U.K. are not reported, clinical trial registration is not yet universal, and reported outcomes do not always match original study proposals, according to a new parliamentary report.

As a result, there is a threat to research integrity. The lack of published results means that information on the effectiveness of new drugs cannot be used. And the lack of transparency presents risks to human health, contributes to research wastage, and means that clinical decisions are made without access to all the available evidence, according to the Science and Technology Committee, which issued the report.


One reason is that compliance with reporting rules is not currently documented by public bodies on a trial-by-trial basis. The report pointed to a failure by the Health Research Authority, the government agency tasked with clinical trial transparency, to enforce rules and impose penalties on companies on wayward trial sponsors and investigators.

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