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The European Union has been urged by one of its top-level advisory groups to increase its support for building up ethical review panels that monitor clinical trials being carried out in developing countries.

The recommendation was made in a report published last week by the European Group on Ethics in Science and New Technologies, which states that "the fundamental ethical rules applied to clinical trials in industrialised countries are to be applicable anywhere".

The 12-member group said that the involvement of local scientists is indispensable throughout all the phases of clinical trials since "their knowledge of local conditions and traditions is necessary to identify local needs", as well as being necessary “to develop a culture of collaboration?

The group stresses that clinical research should only be carried out in developing countries where there is a good justification for it, and that the use of placebos in trials in these countries should be regulated “in principle?by the same rules as in European countries.

Link to full report

Related external links:

European Group on Ethics

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