ARC Specialty: Osteoporosis
Research Center’s specialty is in the development of investigational
drug therapies for osteoporosis, specifically in postmenopausal
women. All our studies are funded by research grants from
pharmaceutical company sponsors. Since we are beginning new
studies on a regular basis, we have a constant need for new research
Research Nuts and Bolts
The purpose of
medical research is to determine if a new medication is safe and
effective for the treatment or prevention of a specific medical
disorder. Every single new drug must pass tough tests before the US
FDA gives approval for the drug to be used. All drugs go through
three phases of clinical testing.
In phase 1,
drugs are tested in a small number of healthy volunteers to
determine their safety. In phase 2, they are given to a small
number of human volunteers to determine what dose is best. And
finally, in phase 3 the drug is tested in a large number of patients
to determine if it is effective. At the Atlanta Research Center, we
specialize in phase 3 studies. In phase 3 studies, the volunteers
are divided at random into two or more groups.
In some studies patients receive
the experimental drug and others are given a placebo or “sugar
pill”. In other studies everyone gets some type of active therapy.
Regardless of the study design, neither the patient nor the doctor
knows who gets what until the end of the study. This study design is
called a Randomized Controlled Trial. Scientific experts and the US
FDA agree that this study design is necessary to determine if a drug
really works or not. The US Food and Drug Administration strictly
regulates our studies.