The 3rd Investigator Meeting of the INTERACT3 held in Chengdu

On 10 January, 2020, an investigator meeting of the INTERACT3 study was successfully held in Chengdu. Based on the results of the two previous investigator meetings (which were held in 2017 and 2018), a focus of this meeting was for researchers to review current progress and discuss in depth the issues that have arisen during the process of implementation. Joint principal study investigators, Professor Craig Anderson, Chief Representative of the George Institute for Global Health (China), and Professor You Chao, Director of Neurosurgery at West China Hospital, and more than 50 doctors from 27 research hospitals across the country, attended the meeting.

The INTERACT3 study is a clinical trial co-sponsored and implemented by West China Hospital and The George Institute China to tackle the increasing challenge imposed by global burden of acute intracerebral haemorrhage (ICH), the most serious type of acute stroke due to bleeding in the brain.  It has been initiated to establish the effects of a ‘care bundle’ of treatment, which involves the rapid use of intensive BP lowering, control of glucose and fever, and correction of anticoagulation, as compared to routine care.  The study uses a novel, stepped wedge, cluster randomised design and is being rolled out as a quality improvement strategy across hospitals in China and overseas.

The conference began with the welcome speech given by Professor Yu Chao, the research project leader at West China Hospital. He thanked all the project staff for enormous enthusiasm and efforts to overcome various difficulties, so that the smooth progress of the project has been ensured. According to Professor Yu Chao, the INTERACT3 study is expected to improve the professional standard of Chinese neurosurgery in the field of clinical research, as well as to enhance the academic reputation of Chinese neurosurgery globally.

Professor Anderson emphasised that the INTERACT3 will provide further concrete evidence to support clinical practice, not just in China where the burden of stroke is enormous, but all around the world. "Significant research funding from major United Kingdom agencies, including the Medical Research Council (MRC), National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), Department of International Development (DIFID) and Wellcome Trust, has sufficiently demonstrated the need and academic value of our study."

Professor Li Hao introduced the progress of the INTERACT3, saying that as of 31 December, 2019, a total of 4,798 patients have been enrolled, marking a 50% completion of the enrolling task. In China, 84 hospitals are participating, and 49 of them are now in the intervention phase. Other participating countries, including Peru, Chile, Vietnam, Mexico, Brazil, Nigeria, Pakistan, and Iraq, as soon to be activated.

During the afternoon discussion session, Ms. Zhang Chunmiao, Project Manager of the study from The George Institute China, reviewed and discussed the progress and the related problems, including the standardisation of the informed consent forms, the criteria for selection and screening, and the intervention implementation details such as follow-up visit and brain imaging data collection. She said that in order to ensure the smooth progress of the project, it is necessary to carry out customised trainings for each research centre in the future, and every centre that finally completed study will receive a joint participation certificate.