Improved animal models are worth the investment

04/1/2014 | Nature (free content)

Successful preclinical drug trials in mice often do not pan out in human tests, writes Steve Perrin of the ALS Therapy Development Institute (TDI). The ALS TDI has developed guidelines to reduce the number of false positives in animal trials, including rigorously assessing the animals' traits relative to human disease, noting the time frame of symptoms and death, and using a mathematical model that includes the number of mice to use in a study. The time-consuming and expensive tests needed to institute such guidelines are critical to avoid wasted clinical trials and loss of lives, he writes.

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