Allergy Partners Clinical Research
Allergy Partners has participated in clinical research studies since the mid 1990s, partnering with several pharmaceutical companies and helping bring to market most of the allergy and asthma medications in use today.
If you are interested in learning more about our clinical research program and studies which are currently enrolling, please fill out the form below.
Do you ever wonder how a new medication comes to market? Ever hear someone claim that a new drug changed their life? The answers often stem from the results of clinical research trials, a critical component of new drug development.
A clinical research trial, or drug study, is a scientific study that has been carefully designed to answer a very specific medical question. Typically, the maker of the drug, usually a pharmaceutical company commonly referred to as the “sponsor,” generates the research question. Some studies test medications currently unavailable for treatment, referred to as investigational new drugs, while others examine currently prescribed medications. The sponsor develops guidelines, or protocols, that research sites must follow to answer the question.
The US Food & Drug Administration (FDA) oversees all research activities in the US, ensuring that medications available to the public are both safe and effective for treatment. The FDA works closely with the sponsor to ensure that the protocol is appropriately designed to answer the question(s). Typically, the FDA will request results from several studies, each answering a different question, before approving a new medication for release. All new medications are tested first in animals, then human volunteers, and finally in patients with a specific disease.
Most clinical trials need large numbers of patients to answer the research question. Sponsors, however, do not have direct access to patients, so they ask trusted medical practices with research experience, or investigative sites, to help. Depending on the number of patients needed for a trial, some studies require hundreds of sites located all across the US, and some multi-national studies will recruit sites located all over the globe.
Many people who consider participating in a clinical research trial will ask, “Is it safe?” Yes, but with any investigational medication where clinical experience is limited, extra safeguards are required. First, most protocols require careful patient monitoring, which often involves serial lab tests, EKGs, breathing tests, and physical exams. For many protocols with electronic recording systems, the site can even track your progress online between scheduled visits. Patient volunteers are not allowed to continue in a trial if any worrisome changes occur. Second, an independent group called an institutional review board, or IRB, ensures that all patients’ rights and welfare, are protected. The IRB approves the protocol, the site, and the consent form for the trial. The site will report any serious adverse events to both the sponsor and the IRB. For events deemed related, the sponsor must distribute a report to all sites participating in the trial. In addition, the IRB has the authority to immediately suspend any research activities if they have concerns regarding patient safety.
Participating in a trial is a partnership or commitment between you and the study team. Patient volunteers are typically asked to keep a careful record of their symptoms along with other conditions that might develop while in the trial. Most protocols require periodic visits to the site for exams, lab tests, and to receive new supplies of study medications.
Patients participate in clinical research trials for different reasons. Most appreciate the detailed medical attention. Others do so to potentially receive a new medication that others with the same condition are unable to receive today. Some do so solely for altruistic reasons – to be a part of advancing medical science. In addition, study-related medical care is provided at no cost, and for most protocols, patient volunteers are compensated for their time and travel.
As the single largest specialty practice in the field of allergy and asthma in the US, we have access to over 1.7 million patients with seasonal and year-round allergies, asthma, hives, eczema, food allergies, venom allergies, chronic cough, immunodeficiencies and nasal polyps. Our extensive EHR database allows us to generate potential subject lists that can vastly exceed those offered by smaller group practices.
We offer a comprehensive team consisting of dedicated research physicians, nurses, regulatory affairs coordinators and administrative assistants.
Several of our hubs have active research programs, permitting us to geographically diversify our services across the US and capture potential subjects with diverse demographics.