New CFF Program Helps Bring More Research Staff to Clinical Trials Network

The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation has launched a new program that will fund 60 additional research coordinators to help speed the progress of CF clinical trials throughout its Therapeutics Development Network (TDN).

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With nearly two dozen new CF clinical trials planned to begin in 2015, the program is aimed at boosting the capacity of TDN research teams to conduct studies across a wide range of areas, including antibiotics, anti-inflammatories, nutritional therapies and potential drugs targeting the basic defect in CF.

Research coordinators play a vital role at all stages of a CF clinical trial. At trial sites around the country, they recruit study volunteers and coordinate the day-to-day activities of a trial as well as work closely with the principal investigator to ensure the trial is done properly and safely.

The largest CF clinical trials network in the world, the TDN is made up of Foundation-accredited care centers across the country that have expertise in clinical research. The TDN recently expanded from 77 to 82 sites.

"Clinical research is critically important to accelerating the search for the cure and helping people with CF live healthier lives today," said Robert J. Beall, Ph.D., president and CEO of the CF Foundation. "The incredible gains we've seen in CF research are made possible by people who participate in clinical trials. Enhancing the ability of research teams to carry out trials efficiently and swiftly, along with expanding the size of the TDN, positions us for continued progress in treating this disease."

Eligible centers were invited to apply for the new program - called the ARC Award - as part of a competitive renewal process that takes place every two years. The 60 centers selected for the program will receive matching funds from CFFT, the nonprofit drug development affiliate of the CF Foundation, to hire research coordinators, whose sole focus will be on conducting multicenter clinical trials.

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