Home / CDISC Blog


13 May 2015

On Thursday 7 May 2015, a small group of people from a wide geographic distribution - ranging from Vietnam to the western United States - met in Basel as a team that will create the formal documentation of data standards for Ebolavirus disease (EVD) research that is needed to make this an official CDISC Therapeutic Area standard.


This team, co-led by Maura Kush (PharmaStat) and Shannon Labout (CDISC), and guided by clinical trial expert Laura Merson (Oxford University Clinical Research Unit), will build on the work started in 2014 during which a set of EVD CRFs, developed as a core data set by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Severe Acute Respiratory and Emerging Infection Consortium (ISARIC) for EVD studies, were annotated by CDISC experts using the SDTM and CDASH standards with the goal of helping ISARIC researchers quickly set up standardized databases during the height of the EVD epidemic, and to support data sharing from their research projects. Those SDTM and CDASH CRF annotations were made publicly available to the EVD researchers through the ISARIC website.

11 May 2015

What I took away from this year’s CDISC Europe Interchange in Basel, Switzerland is a lesson I have most often gleaned from CDISC Interchanges—a conference where people are seeking to learn more about implementing CDISC standards. Yes, there is networking and exchanging of ideas, but the overarching takeaway is that attendees want to be more in tune with CDISC standards and learn how best to implement them at their organization. Since CDISC’s inception, industry professionals have sought out our proven training courses to learn our standards.

7 Nov 2014

The Clinical Data Interchange Standards Consortium (CDISC) has been invited to contribute towards a consensus-based global standard to facilitate data collection, aggregation and analysis of research data related to Ebola research on trials of potential treatments, vaccines and surveillance.   CDISC can provide the global ‘language’ needed to share information gathered through such research studies around the world.


The Oxford University Clinical Research Unit (OUCRU), working in London and Vietnam, has expressed interest in using the existing CDISC Foundational Standards for their research, while enhancing these global standards to meet any additional data requirements necessary for Ebola. OUCRU has received funding from Wellcome Trust and collaborates with others such as NIH and Medicins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders).

23 Oct 2014

This November in Bethesda marks the first time CDISC Education is offering the new Implementation course in the Standard for the Exchange of Non-clinical Data, otherwise known as SEND, at an International Interchange. SEND is a CDISC standard that provides the structures and implementation rules for the submission of data from single- and repeat-dose toxicity studies and carcinogenicity studies, and is built on the Study Data Tabulation Model (SDTM).

27 Aug 2014

What’s in a Value Level Metadata (VLM) Library?

SHARE has the capability to store and publish Value Level Metadata (VLM) content. Currently, the only CDISC standard describing VLM is Define-XML. Define-XML provides the structure for VLM along with some guidelines on when it’s useful, but it does not provide standard VLM content. The Define-XML v2.0 specification states that VLM should be applied when it provides information useful for interpreting study data, and that it need not be applied in all cases. Precisely what and where VLM should be used is determined by study implementers.
Since there are no hard and fast rules describing when to use VLM, what should be included in a SHARE library of VLM content? It might be useful to ask, “where is VLM being used today?” Based on input so far, most implementers add VLM where they think the regulatory reviewers might want to see it. Since many organizations are not yet using Define-XML as a machine-readable specification, but are instead creating it to fulfill an FDA submission requirement, implementers often add VLM for only the most very basic and obvious cases.  How should the SHARE VLM content be published so that it would be useful to implementers?  For those that are using VLM as a machine-readable specification, how are you using VLM?

A Proposal for Developing a VLM Library in SHARE

In line with current VLM usage, the SHARE team proposes to publish VLM for the most basic and obvious cases first. The VLM will be published as Define-XML v2.0 files and made available for download in eSHARE.
17 Aug 2014

Dr. Rebecca Kush, Landen Bain and I represented CDISC at the eSource Physician Checklist Retreat held in San Francisco, California, 26-27 June. This was a collaborative meeting organized and led by UCSF’s Dr. Laura Esserman and Sue Dubman, with representatives from several other organizations, including the FDA and EMA participating via teleconference. The goal of the retreat was to discuss the development of an eSource Physician Checklist to augment the existing CDISC Healthcare Link standards and create a plan for an implementation project.


16 Aug 2014

The theme of the CDISC Asia Pacific/Japan Interchange, held 28 July – 01 August in Tokyo, was “Transcending Geographic Lines for the Betterment of Clinical Research.” Evidence of transcending geographic lines was clearly visible at this well-attended CDISC Interchange.  


16 Aug 2014

The last several weeks have been both busy and fulfilling for many CDISC staff, as we made our annual trip to the Asia-Pacific region for both the CDISC Education Summit in South Korea (22-25 July) and the CDISC Asia-Pacific/Japan Interchange in Tokyo, Japan (28 July – 01 August).


16 Aug 2014

We have enjoyed a relationship with the Translational Research Informatics Institute (TRI) since we signed a Memorandum of Understanding with them in 2009. This has included joint publications, presentations at respective conferences, TRI membership and participation in CDISC activities, and the real pleasure of seeing how TRI has implemented CDISC standards with increasing prowess over the past five years. Last week, prior to the CDISC AP/Japan Interchange, we visited TRI in Kobe, Japan. We took the Shinkansen to Kobe the morning of 22 August, arriving just after noon.

15 Aug 2014

The official announcement of the notification “Basic Principles on Electronic Submission of Study Data for New Drug Applications” was made by the Evaluation and Licensing Division of the Pharmaceutical and Food Safety Bureau, Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW) on 20 June 2014. Following on this, the Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices Agency (PMDA) held a briefing session for the operation of this notification on 24 July 2014 in Tokyo.