American College of Cardiology Research Network Uses Big Data to Connect Practices with Trials

Contact: Stephanie Abraham,, 202-308-8574

WASHINGTON (Dec. 19, 2013) — The American College of Cardiology has established the PINNACLE Registry Research Alliance to connect cardiovascular care teams with information about clinical trials and accelerate the systematic access of patients to potentially groundbreaking therapies.

Clinical trials are the gold standard for studying the effectiveness of new treatments, but difficulty in identifying eligible patients often limits the ability of researchers to conduct research studies worldwide. 

The Research Alliance, which is open to nearly 2,500 cardiovascular professionals who are part of the outpatient PINNACLE Registry, will offer access to information about a range of research opportunities, expedite the identification of patients with the potential to benefit from participation in clinical trials and observational studies, and support the advancement of up-and-coming researchers through investigator development programs. 

“Registries in the ACC’s National Cardiovascular Data Registry have been valuable for providing feedback to the cardiovascular medical team to support quality improvement, and registry data has been analyzed for hundreds of observational research studies,” said ACC President John G. Harold, MD, MACC. “The Research Alliance will allow the PINNACLE Registry to play a new role in shaping the future of cardiology by making it easier for more practices to participate in trials.” 

Through the Research Alliance, information about clinical trials and potentially eligible patients identified through PINNACLE will be shared with their respective physicians. If physicians and their patients decide to partake in a research opportunity, the Alliance serves to reduce the participation burden for both practices and patients, and potentially drive down costs associated with trial recruitment.

One of the first research studies in line to access the Alliance network is a clinical trial for a potentially groundbreaking investigational drug in a new class of LDL-cholesterol modifying therapies, known as PCSK9 inhibitors. Recruitment for the phase 3 PCSK9 clinical trial program, ODYSSEY Outcomes, is underway and aims to include over 18,000 patients at 750 study locations worldwide.

“This exciting new program has the potential to expand treatment options for patients who are at risk for cardiovascular events,” said ACC Executive Vice President of Science, Education & Quality William J. Oetgen, MD, MBA, FACC. “The Research Alliance and its potential contributions to cardiovascular research represent another way ACC clinical registries contribute to the ACC’s mission to improve cardiovascular care.”

The NCDR is the preeminent cardiovascular data repository in the United States. Through the analysis and benchmarking of patient risk factors, procedures, devices and clinical outcomes, the NCDR’s growing suite of registries provides evidence-based quality improvement solutions for cardiologists and other medical professionals who are committed to measurement, improvement and excellence in cardiovascular care. More information about the NCDR and PINNACLE Registry Research Alliance is available at

The mission of the American College of Cardiology is to transform cardiovascular care and improve heart health. The College is a 43,000-member medical society comprised of physicians, surgeons, nurses, physician assistants, pharmacists and practice managers. The College is a leader in the formulation of health policy, standards and guidelines. The ACC provides professional education, operates national registries to measure and improve quality of care, disseminates cardiovascular research, and bestows credentials upon cardiovascular specialists who meet stringent qualifications. For more information, visit


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