Background. Since 1999, the US Food and Drug Administration approved neuraminidase and endonuclease inhibitors to treat uncomplicated outpatient influenza but not severe hospitalized influenza. After the 2009 pandemic, several influenza hospital-based clinical therapeutic trials were unsuccessful, possibly due to certain study factors. Therefore, in 2014, the US Health and Human Services agencies formed a Working Group (WG) to address related clinical challenges. Methods. Starting in 2014, the WG obtained retrospective data from failed hospital-based influenza therapeutic trials and nontherapeutic hospital-based influenza studies. These data allowed the WG to identify factors that might improve hospital-based therapeutic trials. These included primary clinical endpoints, increased clinical site enrollment, and appropriate baseline enrollment criteria. Results. During 2018, the WG received retrospective data from a National Institutes of Health hospital-based influenza therapeutic trial that demonstrated time to resolution of respiratory status, which was not a satisfactory primary endpoint. The WG statisticians examined these data and believed that ordinal outcomes might be a more powerful primary endpoint. Johns Hopkins' researchers provided WG data from an emergency-department (ED) triage study to identify patients with confirmed influenza using molecular testing. During the 2013-2014 influenza season, 4 EDs identified 1074 influenza-patients, which suggested that triage testing should increase enrollment by hospital-based clinical trial sites. In 2017, the WG received data from Northwestern Memorial Hospital researchers regarding 703 influenza inpatients over 5 seasons. The WG applied National Early Warning Score (NEWS) at patient baseline to identify appropriate criteria to enroll patients into hospital-based therapeutic trials. Conclusions. Data received by the WG indicated that hospital-based influenza therapeutic trials could use ordinal outcome analyses, ED triage to identify influenza patients, and NEWS for enrollment criteria.
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- Cinical site recruitment
- Enrollment criteria
- Therapeutic trial endpoints