One of PCORI’s goals is to improve the methods that researchers use for patient-centered outcomes research. PCORI funds methods projects like this one to better understand and advance the use of research methods that improve the strength and quality of comparative effectiveness research.
This research project is in progress. PCORI will post the research findings on this page within 90 days after the results are final.
What is the research about?
Researchers design studies based on what questions they want to answer. Often researchers want to know if a new treatment works better than no treatment or one that has been in use. But sometimes researchers may want to know that a new treatment is not substantially worse compared with one that has been in use. Studies designed to answer the latter question are called noninferiority studies. Although these studies may provide useful information, they are difficult to design and conduct.
In this study, the research team is using statistical approaches called Bayesian methods to design and analyze noninferiority studies.
Who can this research help?
Researchers can use results from this study to plan and conduct research that compares the effectiveness of several treatments to test noninferiority.
What is the research team doing?
The research team is using Bayesian methods to test noninferiority in studies that compare two or more treatments. Bayesian methods use prior knowledge about treatments to better inform noninferiority testing. The research team is developing methods to obtain prior knowledge by combining data from multiple sources, including data from past trials in which similar treatments were used and survey data that gather opinions about trial participation from patients, doctors, nurses, and others.
To test their methods, the research team is conducting simulated studies and analyzing trial data about treatments for mental health and heart disease. They are building their methods into free statistical software for researchers to use.
Research methods at a glance
|Goal||Develop Bayesian analytic methods for noninferiority comparative effectiveness trials|