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Most animal research studies may not avoid key biases

"another wake-up call for the scientific community"

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robert99 robert99 Sweden Posts: 1360
1 18 Oct 2015
Most animal research studies may not avoid key biases
Researchers who conduct animal studies often don't use simple safeguards against biases that have become standard in human clinical trials—or at least they don't report doing so in their scientific papers, making it impossible for readers to ascertain the quality of the work, an analysis of more than 2500 journal articles shows. Such biases, conscious or unconscious, can make candidate medical treatments look better than they actually are, the authors of the analysis warn, and lead to eye-catching results that can't be replicated in larger or more rigorous animal studies—or in human trials.

more at http://news.sciencemag.org/plants-animals/2015/10/most-animal-research-studies-may-not-avoid-key-biases
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reddapanda reddapanda ACT Posts: 381
2 18 Oct 2015
Thanks Robert, that was worth reading.

It would be good if there was a protocol/standard practice (by the scientific journals/societies which determine what articles get published) of mentioning these four things (which the article highlights), to increase the usefulness of the research.

The more rigorous a study though, in many cases the more expensive it's likely to be. And in some cases increasing this type of rigour will mean more animal lives are used in the study (to get a larger sample size from which to randomise allocation, for example).

I think there are really two issues which only partially/slightly overlap, one is the value of animal lives, and two is the quality of scientific evidence that gets reported in scientific journals etc.

fish
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