Company is blamed for early halt of trial into obesity treatment

BMJ 2016; 352 doi: (Published 09 March 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;352:i1363
  1. Jacqui Wise
  1. London

Researchers have condemned companies that prematurely publicise study data, after a trial looking at the obesity treatment naltrexone-bupropion was stopped early before its cardiovascular safety could be fully established.

The US trial, published in JAMA,1 was stopped prematurely after the sponsor, Orexigen Therapeutics, released the interim data. The researchers said that, as a result, the cardiovascular safety of the treatment remained uncertain and that it would require evaluation in a new trial.

They said, “Premature release of interim data can result in inappropriate prejudgment about the benefits or risks of the studied therapy and make completion of the trial highly problematic.”

The …

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