Mapping of research protocols, publications, and collaborations on COVID-19 in Latin America and the Caribbean

Chapman et al.


To map research protocols, publications, and collaborations on coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) developed in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC).


Included were research protocols registered in international platforms and research publications containing populations, data, or authors from LAC. The source of information for protocols was primarily the International Clinical Trial Registry Platform (ICTRP) of the World Health Organization; for publications, specific electronic databases and repositories pertaining to COVID-19 were used. The search for publications was conducted up to 11 November; the search for protocols, up to 30 November 2020 (both dates inclusive). Data was extracted from protocols using standardized variables from the ICTRP, and from publications following
pre-established criteria.


Among the protocols, 63.0% were therapeutic studies, 10% focused on prevention, and 45% were collaborative; 64% of the protocols received no funding from the industry; 23% of the publications were not peer-reviewed and 23% were collaborative in nature. The most frequent study designs were systematic reviews and cross-sectional studies; 47.1% of studies were conducted in health facilities and 22% in community settings; 38.0% focused on the diagnosis and 27.9% on prognosis. A qualitative synthesis was performed by line of care and approach strategies.


There was an increase in the number of collaborative research studies relative to earlier studies and in protocols not funded by industry. The proposed research agenda was covered in large part as the pandemic unfolded.

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