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Accessible Clinical Trials in Cherryville, NC

Source:: Grace Smith – Wise News Network

CHERRYVILLE, NC (WNN) – Clinical research opportunities have come to Cherryville, thanks to Tekton Research and Dr. Thomas White. Dr. White, a Cherryville native, has long sought to bring clinical trials to the residents of Cherryville and its surrounding areas.

Tekton Research is a company dedicated to clinical research. There are Tekton locations in six states and its headquarters are in Austin, Texas. Tekton pursues its research through its principal investigators, doctors who lead clinical trials in their communities. 

Clinical research is vital to the medical industry. Trials assess new drugs, equipment and treatments in controlled environments. All new medical innovations undergo evaluation through clinical trials before becoming available to patients.

As a principal investigator for Tekton, it is Dr. White’s job to lead clinical studies in Cherryville. He wanted to bring clinical research to Cherryville for years due to the lack of local opportunities. 

“I think the important thing to stress here is that we’ve not had clinical research opportunities here,” said Dr. White. 

Clinical research opportunities are more common in densely populated areas, specifically in big cities or university towns. However, diversity is important when conducting clinical trials because it ensures the effectiveness of treatments across various populations. While trials in big cities, like New York or Chicago, offer population advantages, they may overlook genetic variations and different reactions found in smaller areas, like Cherryville. However, Tekton Research specializes in bringing clinical trials to underserved areas.

“Tekton has been very committed. One of their new missions is to develop clinical research in small communities,” said Dr. White. 

The clinical research process is rigorous. It involves the participation of human subjects who agree to undergo tests or treatments as a part of the study protocol.  In most instances, half of the participants will receive the new treatment, while the others will receive the standard or placebo treatment for comparison. This creates a control group, which serves as a baseline to evaluate the new treatment. The studies are anonymous, meaning that no one knows which participants will receive the standard treatment or new treatment. Not even the principal investigators know ahead of time. Anonymity is crucial in clinical trials, ensuring unbiased results and maintaining integrity throughout the study.

“There’s a great power of suggestion that if I give you a particular medication, we want to see truthfully and objectively if it is working,” said Dr. White. 

Currently, Tekton in Cherryville is focusing on a study to combat high triglycerides. Triglycerides are a type of fat found in the blood. When a person eats, their body stores extra calories as triglycerides, which can later be used for energy between meals. High triglycerides, or hypertriglyceridemia, is a condition characterized by elevated levels of triglycerides in the bloodstream, increasing the risk of heart disease and stroke. It is typically caused by factors like diet, underlying medical conditions and a lack of physical exercise. Dr. White said hypertriglyceridemia is somewhat rare. He is looking for participants who have over 500 triglycerides when fasting; a typical level is less than 150. 

“The parameters to participate, first and foremost, is an interest and a full, voluntary attitude and acceptance that this is something that folks can participate in, but it’s their choice,” said Dr. White. 

Although this first study is for a rare condition, Dr. White wants his research to center around finding solutions to “common medical problems.” He provided examples of common problems, like migraines, arthritis or skin conditions.

Additionally, The Cherryville location will most likely conduct vaccine trials.

“One of my goals here at this Tekton site is that I want to bring clinical studies that address common problems … Common problems that we all, our families, our neighbors, our friends, all deal with,” said Dr. White. 

Dr. White is excited to provide these studies to his community. He hopes Tekton will demonstrate the importance of clinical research. 

“There’s, understandably, sometimes a little fear and skepticism or doubt about medications and how they get approved. I think this will illustrate that when things come to market, they’ve been tested, they’ve been scrutinized,” said Dr. White. 

Tekton’s Cherryville location operates out of Dr. White’s office at 112 South Oak Street. Potential participants can inquire about clinical research opportunities by visiting the office, calling or emailing.  Tekton and Dr. White want to make clinical trials accessible to people in smaller communities. All demographics should have a chance to be part of medical progress. Bringing Tekton to Cherryville allows residents to help make clinical research easier for everyone to take part in. 

 

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