Background and Objectives: Clinical research has led to some of the most important advances in improving human health including the discovery of important risk factors for heart disease, diabetes and cancer as well as treatments for common diseases which have led to unprecedented increases in life expectancy. Unfortunately despite having nearly 600 million people, the Eastern Mediterranean region (EMR) is one of the most underdeveloped parts of the world in terms of clinical research (3.1 clinical studies per million people versus a global average of 19 per million.) However, this overall figure masks important differences between the 22 countries of the EMR and our objective was to quantify clinical research activity in Qatar and other countries of the EMR. Methods: We used data from clinicaltrials.gov (a registry of publicly and privately supported clinical studies of human participants) which lists all clinical research studies being conducted in every country. We quantified clinical research activity by dividing the number of studies in each country by its population to get the metric number of clinical studies per million people. Results: Qatar had the second highest clinical research activity in the EMR at 18 studies / million people. There was a very wide variation in the number of studies ranging from 36 / million people (Lebanon) to 0 studies / million people (Somalia) with the average across the region being 3.1. Full results are shown in Table 1. Conclusion: Qatar's level of clinical research activity was far above the average for the region and almost reaches the global average. This is a remarkable achievement considering that clinical research only began in Qatar a few years ago. Given Qatar's commitment to, and funding for, clinical research it is likely that Qatar will become the regional leader in clinical research in the near future.


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