Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
. 2014 Jan 18;383(9913):257-66.
doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(13)62296-5. Epub 2014 Jan 8.

Increasing Value and Reducing Waste: Addressing Inaccessible Research

Affiliations
Free PMC article

Increasing Value and Reducing Waste: Addressing Inaccessible Research

An-Wen Chan et al. Lancet. .
Free PMC article

Abstract

The methods and results of health research are documented in study protocols, full study reports (detailing all analyses), journal reports, and participant-level datasets. However, protocols, full study reports, and participant-level datasets are rarely available, and journal reports are available for only half of all studies and are plagued by selective reporting of methods and results. Furthermore, information provided in study protocols and reports varies in quality and is often incomplete. When full information about studies is inaccessible, billions of dollars in investment are wasted, bias is introduced, and research and care of patients are detrimentally affected. To help to improve this situation at a systemic level, three main actions are warranted. First, academic institutions and funders should reward investigators who fully disseminate their research protocols, reports, and participant-level datasets. Second, standards for the content of protocols and full study reports and for data sharing practices should be rigorously developed and adopted for all types of health research. Finally, journals, funders, sponsors, research ethics committees, regulators, and legislators should endorse and enforce policies supporting study registration and wide availability of journal reports, full study reports, and participant-level datasets.

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1
Publication rates for positive studies versus null/negative studies, by type of study cohort (12 inception cohorts of 2,531 protocols; 4 cohorts of 855 regulatory agency submissions; 27 cohorts of 10,289 conference abstracts; and 4 cohorts of 2,636 manuscripts submitted to journals).,
Figure 2
Figure 2
Publication rates for random sample of 677 completed trials registered on ClinicalTrials.gov from 2000-2007, by study characteristic. Adapted from Ross J et al.
Figure 3
Figure 3
Results of published versus unpublished randomised trials of reboxetine versus placebo for acute treatment of major depression. Adapted from Eyding D et al.
Figure 4
Figure 4
Key sources of information on study methods and results, with associated information loss and potential for selective reporting.

Comment in

Similar articles

See all similar articles

Cited by 184 articles

See all "Cited by" articles

Publication types

Feedback