"More people still die from cardiovascular diseases than from cancer," says Professor Thomas Eschenhagen, CEO of the DZHK. According to the German Federal Statistical Office, 37 per cent of all deaths in Germany in 2017 were due to cardiovascular diseases and almost 25 per cent to cancer. Heart diseases do not only affect older people who are overweight or have high blood pressure, but can also often strike seemingly healthy young people in the prime of their lives. There is a great need for research and the video illustrates why clinical studies are indispensable.
The video with the title ‘Together for a healthy heart’ shows the perspective of a study participant and her doctor. "Every single patient is important," says DZHK study physician Dr. Manuela Licka from the Heidelberg University Hospital. "Within the framework of the studies, we can intensively support the participants and respond to them individually". The patients very much value this. Study participant Christa Reker confirms that she feels in good hands. For her, it is nice to know that not only is she being helped, but that others can also benefit from her data. The study results provide doctors with important information for future therapies and the data and biosamples are also available to other researchers in the long term. The DZHK has established a worldwide, unique system for sharing research data.
Transparency helps to create trust
The DZHK supports industry-independent clinical studies in order to develop new therapies for cardiovascular diseases. An important concern is to present clinical research in a transparent and understandable way. For this purpose, the DZHK patient website PIP explains all currently funded studies in a way that can be understood by the general public. In addition, the current number of participants for each study is published online. This makes the DZHK one of the few major funders of clinical trials to disclose the recruitment figures for its studies. A total of around 7,000 patients are currently taking part in DZHK studies.
Christine Vollgraf, Press and Public Relations, German Centre for Cardiovascular Research (DZHK), Tel.: 030 3465 529 02, presse(at)dzhk.de