Figure 1: Clinical trials for the top five indications by phase in 2017.

During an analysis of all clinical trials with a start date in 2017, GlobalData analysts found that pain was the most frequent indication across the period, followed by Type 2 diabetes, breast cancer, solid tumour, and non-small cell lung cancer.

Phase II was the phase with the majority of trials across the major indications, as shown in Figure 1, with the exception of solid tumour, which had the largest number of its trials in Phase I. The top two indications, Pain and Type 2 Diabetes, both showed a much higher number of Phase IV trials in comparison to the other three indications, at 26% and 24%, respectively.

Some types of pain and type 2 diabetes are chronic, so long-term studies with very large populations are important for patients with a continuous treatment programme.