In this blog, we talk with Robert Greene, Founder and President of the HungerNDThirst Foundation, about his upcoming presentation at Cytel’s East User Group Meeting on 14th and 15th November at Merck in Darmstadt, Germany. Robert will bring a fresh perspective to the discussion of the role statisticians can play in enhancing the position of patients in clinical trials. Patient-centricity is a key topic in modern drug development, and this session aims to encourage statisticians to question the importance of a more patient-centric approach within their field.
Cytel: Can you give us a little background into the Hunger and Thirst Foundation and your work?
Robert Greene (RG): The HungerNdThirst Foundation focuses on non-pharmacologic management of dysgeusia, through education, collaboration, taste profiling, research and product development.
We also developed the ATE Cookies ® (Awareness through Experience). The cookies mirror the metallic taste that most people with cancer encounters when going through (chemotherapy) treatment - https://hungerndthirst.org/zelf-smaakverstoring-ervaren/.
The cookies are used as an educational tool for discussing dysgeusia and malnutrition. They are being used in The Netherlands, France, Denmark, Sweden and Russia.
Cytel: Why is the contribution of statisticians important in developing a patient-centric approach?
RG: Statisticians play a role in all areas of drug research and development. They also work with people from different disciplines (doctors, scientists, production managers, marketing), and government agencies. Simply asking the question about how patients have been involved in each stage of drug research and development can make a difference. It is a small step to take to achieve huge changes.
Statisticians can also help to illustrate the impact that a patient centric approach may have on the individual stages of drug research and development, compared to a non-patient centric approach.
Cytel: What can those who hear your talk expect to take away?
RG: Drug research and development needs to be aimed at not only prolonging life, but offering the opportunity to ‘live’ life. To achieve this, patients need to be included in drug research and development. Patient-centric drug development needs to become the model to follow.
Cytel: We look forward to hearing more insights from Robert at the EUGM.
About Robert Greene
Robert Greene is the Founder and President HungerNdThirst Foundation, advocate and ‘professional patient’.
HungerNdThirst Foundation’s main goal is to better understand cancer patients’ needs to help them better deal with taste alteration. The aim is to improve nutritional intake and quality of life.
About the East User Group Meeting: Innovations in Clinical Trials Symposium & Hands-on East Training
Since 2011, the Innovations in Clinical Trials Symposium & Hands-on East Training has brought together industry experts, thought leaders and applied statisticians to discuss the future of clinical trials. This annual meeting guides the development of the industry's leading clinical trial design software. We will share a synopsis from the event next month.