Basic Research versus Clinical Research

Basic research

Basic research
By Linda Bartlett (Photographer) [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Basic research is the foundation of every applied, clinical or any other form of research. “If you think of it in terms of construction, you can’t put up a beautiful, elegant house without first putting in a foundation,” says David Frank, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Medical Oncology, at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. “In science, if you don’t first understand the basic research, then you can’t move on to advanced applications.”

Basic research is an exploratory research that does not have application directly and immediately. But nonetheless basic research is very important because it helps pave the way for future research. It helps us understand phenomenons and problems better and gives direction. Most of the applied research we do is based on the building blocks of the basic research. Therefore, basic research is the exploration of ideas for future research.

Also, basic research develops a new theory, rule, principle, or law. Basic research sometimes leads to big discoveries or lead to new discoveries in applied research. The results of basic research are then tested using applied research to refine a new theory, law or principle.

The results of a basic research will hit the market may be in 10 years or so while the results of applied, clinical or any other research will reach market in 2 to 5 years. This is a huge difference and therefore only government, large organizations, and institutions sponsor basic research.

Clinical research

clinical research
clinical research

Clinical research on the other hand is about finding the best health care practices for the patients. It can be patient oriented research involving patients as the subjects of the research. Also, it includes research that studies the outcomes of an intervention or health services. Lastly, it can include research that deals with the incidence, spread, or control of a disease.

Therefore, clinical research has an application immediately and it help solve many health related issues in the current situation. It helps the physician understand what medication will best help treat a patient with any health related issue. The clinical researcher needs to have the knowledge of medical science as well as statistics and other research related specialties.

Clinical research helps in the advancement of science and knowledge and it has great many applications in our life. But every clinical research is based on some basic research that helps form a foundation for further research.

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