Phase I trials as therapeutic options: (usually) a betrayal of evidence-based medicine

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Many argue that phase I cancer trials are a therapeutic option for eligible patients. I question this position and offer a more nuanced view that differentiates between types of trials. Patients seeking treatment might legitimately pursue phase I trials, although labelling all phase I trials as therapeutic contradicts the spirit of evidence-based medicine.

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The work of the author is funded by CIHR (PJT-148726).

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Correspondence to Jonathan Kimmelman.

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Competing interests

The author serves in a remunerative capacity on a DSMB for a (non-cancer) phase I trial of Ultragenyx.

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