‘Clinical trials help medical researchers’

Professor Les Bokey, the District’s Director of Research, said there are more than 300 clinical trials in progress across south-west Sydney.
Professor Les Bokey, the District’s Director of Research, said there are more than 300 clinical trials in progress across south-west Sydney.

South Western Sydney Local Health District’s Director of Research Professor Les Bokey said the development of a new medicine to treat advanced prostate cancer and the use of medicinal cannabis for terminally ill patients are among more than 300 clinical trials in progress across south-west Sydney.

Speaking to promote International Clinical Trials Day (May 20), professor Bokey said clinical trials help medical researchers determine if a treatment is “safe, effective and better than existing treatment.”

“The trials cover speciality areas including cancer, cardiology, rheumatology, multiple sclerosis and gastroenterology and are aimed at improving treatment and saving lives,” he said.

“Research is usually linked to community needs and values to ensure our population has access to the best treatment in the years to come.’’ 

He highlighted Professor Meera Agar’s Australian-first medical cannabis trial for terminally ill patients, and Associate Professor Kieran Scott’s world-first clinical trial of a new experimental medicine for prostate cancer treatment as examples of the District’s ground-breaking research.

The District and the Ingham Institute for Applied Medical Research marked World Clinical Trials Day –which commemorates the day James Lind began his trials into the cause of scurvy in 1747 –  with a morning tea to thank research staff for their hard work and dedication.

Presentations on the research developments in the region will be presented by the District and the Institute at The Health Beyond Research & Innovation Showcase on June 6 and 7.