Billions of dollars are being spent on flawed scientific research which creates false hope for those waiting for cures, according to study by economists.
In the US alone, $28 billion per year is spent on preclinical research whose results can’t be reproduced in other trials.
The authors say these wasted preclinical studies create false hope for patients waiting for lifesaving cures.
Analysis of past life science research studies indicates that the cumulative prevalence of irreproducible preclinical research exceeds 50%.
“Our primary goal here is not to pinpoint the exact reproducibility rate but rather to identify root causes of the problem and develop a framework to address the highest priorities,” says Leonard P. Freedman, president of the Global Biological Standards Institute.
“Success requires communicating to build awareness, sharing best practices and identifying practical steps with funding behind them to support scientists in their life-saving mission. It requires that researchers own it, funders fund it, media publicise it and consumers care about it.”
The study is published in the journal PLOS Biology by the Global Biological Standards Institute and two leading economists.
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