By Mark Opler, Ph.D., MPH and Gianna Capodilupo, MA
Double-blind, randomized placebo-controlled clinical trials are highly challenging and resource-intensive. Drug-development costs have risen dramatically over time, yet success rates have not improved. In parallel, rates of placebo response across multiple therapeutic areas are at historic highs and progressively increasing. Multiple reviews in different therapeutic areas, including pain, epilepsy, Crohn’s disease, schizophrenia, and others suggest a worsening trend - year over year, the rates of placebo response are going up.