We report the design and implementation of the first phase 3 trial of CoenzymeQ₁₀ (CoQ₁₀) in children with genetic mitochondrial diseases. A novel, rigorous set of eligibility criteria was established. The trial, which remains open to recruitment, continues to address multiple challenges to the recruitment of patients, including widely condoned empiric use of CoQ₁₀ by individuals with proven or suspected mitochondrial disease and skepticism among professional and lay mitochondrial disease communities about participating in placebo-controlled trials. These attitudes represent significant barriers to the ethical and scientific evaluation--and ultimate approval--of nutritional and pharmacological therapies for patients with life-threatening inborn errors of energy metabolism.
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