3.5 Using the CRS to find clinical trials

The CRS can assist in clinical trial discovery.

Records are fed into the CRS from several different sources. One route is the specialised registers maintained by all the groups, and all Cochrane information specialists can search the trials registers of other Cochrane Groups.

Records also come into the CRS via the Cochrane Centralised Search Service (CSS). The aim of CSS is to develop CENTRAL into a more comprehensive repository of trial reports, and to minimise routine searching and screening for individual Review Groups. As well as some automated data feeds, the CSS uses a collaborative volunteer effort, Cochrane Crowd, to screen and classify randomised controlled trials and controlled clinical trials.

The data feeds which go into the CRS and aid resource discovery include:

  • Records indexed as randomized controlled trials or controlled clinical trials from PubMed are automatically added on a monthly basis.
  • Records from Embase are harvested using a sensitive search strategy, and are then screened using Cochrane Crowd, and added on a monthly basis
  • Embase records which have the Emtree headings “Randomized controlled trial” or “Controlled clinical trial” are added monthly.
  • Records from ClinicalTrials.gov and KoreaMed are screened via Cochrane Crowd and added monthly.

CENTRAL is searchable using the CRS, and there is a built in search functionality to help information specialists find CENTRAL records which are not tagged with their Review Group’s code.