Human Subjects Research in Developing Countries

Human subjects research is often necessary in the process of studying disease and developing new drugs and other treatments. The knowledge gained from human subjects research has resulted in many drugs that can save lives, or substantially improve a patient’s quality of life. However, medicine (including pharmacology) has a clear set of principles and guidelines to protect the rights of individuals serving as subjects in clinical trials and similar research, for the purpose of ensuring that the subjects are not exploited or unnecessarily endangered by the research. While most industrialized countries have strict procedures and regulations regarding human subjects research, with substantial penalties for those who violate these procedures and regulations, research conducted in developing countries presents additional challenges including, sometimes, the temptation to exploit ...

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