How are new drugs developed and tested?

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New drugs are first tested for safety and effectiveness using human cells grown in the laboratory and animals.

Human trials may then be carried out on healthy volunteers to test for safety and on people with the illness to test for safety and effectiveness.

Make sure that you can describe and explain the use of 'blind' or 'double-blind' human trials in the testing of a new medical treatment.

Placebos are not commonly used in human trials because new treatments are usually compared with the current treatment. They are used if there is no current treatment to compare with the new drug.