Atopic Dermatitis: Global Overview of the Clinical Research Landscape

Atopic Dermatitis: Prevalence, Past Experience, and Competition

Atopic Dermatitis (AD) is also known as eczema. It’s a condition that makes the skin red and itchy, most common in children but can occur at any age. Atopic dermatitis is chronic and tends to flare periodically. 

Sometimes it can be accompanied by asthma or hay fever. Currently, there is no cure for atopic dermatitis. Research has focused its efforts on finding relief solutions, but also treatments.

If you’re interested in how the whole therapeutic area of Dermatology is doing in Q1 of 2021 and how Covid-19 affected it and other TAs, check our 2021 Market Overview. We update it quarterly as new data becomes available so stay tuned for our next updates as well.


According to Medscape, the prevalence rate of Atopic Dermatitis is rising, and AD affects 15-30% of children and 2-10% of adults. This figure estimates the prevalence in developed countries. 

In China and Iran, the prevalence rate is approximately 2-3%. The frequency is increased in patients who immigrate to developed countries from underdeveloped countries.

This map represents the prevalence in different countries:

If you want to see the top 5 countries with the highest prevalence as well as the top 5 with the highest incidence rate you can do so on TrialHub or you can reach out to us at to discuss your protocol.  

Countries with past experience in clinical research in Atopic Dermatitis

The way we usually measure the research experience of a given country is by calculating the number of trials being performed for a million people. The map below shows on a global level which countries had more clinical trials than others compared to their population:

There are in total 566 completed clinical trials targeting patients with Atopic Dermatitis. 126 of them were completed in the last 3 years. The majority of all trials are pediatric clinical trials (286), as well as treatment as a purpose (354). 

The countries with the most completed trials are the USA, Germany, and Canada, the United Kingdom, and Japan. Where the United States has almost 5 times more sites with experience than Germany.

If we look at the number of trials completed divided by the number of people who live there, then the ranking of countries looks different. Here are the top 5:

Latvia has a total of 7 clinical trials completed and we have identified 6 experienced in Atopic Dermatitis sites. Almost all clinical trials completed are in Phase 3. 

Countries with active or recruiting clinical trials

As previously mentioned, research in Atopic Dermatitis has been increasing due to the higher number of patients in developed countries and lack of effective treatment. 

At the moment there are 517 active, recruiting, or not yet recruiting clinical trials in the indication and most of them are in Phase 3. 121 of these studies are focused on treatment as a purpose. 

The countries with the highest number of trials are the USA, Germany, the UK, and Japan. Though, if we want to measure the competition level when it comes to patient recruitment, it’s best to measure trials versus population. 

Based on trials per million people the top countries with the highest competition are as follows:

On this map you can also get a better idea of the global competition in running clinical trials in Atopic Dermatitis:

Even though Estonia is the country with the most clinical trials per million people, it only has 2 really big centers (Talin and Tartu) where this research happens, leaving other regions available:

At the moment there are 17 active or recruiting clinical trials. Almost all are in Phase 3 and just a few are in Phase 2 but there are no trials in Phase 1. 

The largest clinical trial including Estonia is looking to recruit 2678 patients. Interestingly enough the completed trials in Estonia are just 3, making it a relatively new destination for conducting research in this indication. 

Atopic Dermatitis: Recruitment Rates and Trials Performance Statistics 

As you can tell by the first part of the report, prevalence is high in Scandinavian countries but as the number of trials has been traditionally high as well, there are new countries getting involved in clinical trials for Atopic Dermatitis. 

This is why countries like Estonia have become a hub for research too, making it the country with the highest number of trials per million people.

In this part, we will observe more closely the Recruitment Rates of these studies looking back to all completed trials. 

Let’s start with a map visualizing the regions and countries based on the Recruitment Rate of the completed Atopic Dermatitis clinical trials. 

As you can see from the legend, it varies between 0 (in countries where there were no such trials or the trials there did not provide enough data to accurately calculate recruitment rates) and 19,5 patients/site/month in the highest recruiting countries (the dark yellow). 

At TrialHub we exclude all the trials that have unrealistically high or low rates, to ensure that the final number makes more sense and excludes black swans.

Of course, this can be changed easily by adding or removing trials to the list of studies that contribute to the final recruitment rate number.

The recruitment rates per country are the average of the trials performed in each of the countries. In total the completed studies are 564. 

These rates can change if we narrow down the trials based on eligibility criteria or any other specifics (for example virtual trial components involved) or we can also add the active but no more recruiting trials. 

Looking at the highest recruiting countries, these are the top 5:

It is important to mention that all these rates are based on all sorts of clinical trials. If we are to focus on studies that target treatment, then countries like Portugal, Chile, and Sweden are on the top with their Recruitment Rates of 3.57, 3.27, 2.80 patients/site/month.

Atopic Dermatitis: Sites and Investigators

At TrialHub we have identified 2601 sites that have been working on clinical trials for Atopic Dermatitis. As usual the countries that have more tradition in research in the indication have more sites and investigators compared to others. 

So countries like the USA, Germany and Sweden appear to be the best for finding Key Opinion Leaders in the space but also investigators working with enough patients who might participate in your study. 

As we mentioned though, competition there is also quite high, as well as standard of care for patients. This is why there are emerging countries like Estonia for example that are attracting more attention leading to more experience there too.

Here is a map showing the location of sites with the most experience in Atopic Dermatitis:

In red we have highlighted the ones that are currently working on trials in Atopic Dermatitis:

The last map shows the sites based on the patients around them:

When it comes to sites that are currently not involved with studies in this indication, out of 2601 we have identified 966. 

Here is a list of the top 10 research sites with the most completed clinical trials in Atopic Dermatitis:

Innovaderm’s Research Site, Quebeck, Canada

National Jewish Health Center, Colorado, USA 

Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, USA

Virgia Clinical Research Site, Virginia, USA

Center for Clinical Studies – Webster , Texas, USA

Center for Clinical Studies- Houston, Texas, USA

ForCare Clinical Research, Florida, USA

Medisearch Clinical Trials, Missouri, USA

Dermatology Research Associates, California, USA

Clinical Science Institute, California, USA

If you want to get more details on their experience and research potential, you can directly contact them, or use TrialHub to learn more about them and the right contact person. 

When it comes to investigators, at TrialHub we found 1847 investigators with experience in Atopic Dermatitis clinical trials. There are a few names that stand out like: Dr. Donald Leung, Dr. Lisa Beck, Dr. Judy Leirsmith. 

To learn more about them and other investigators available to run clinical trials in Dermatology, you can contact us at

TrialHub is a feasibility intelligence platform that supports feasibility, startup, patient recruitment and clinical project managers with a 360-degree overview of the clinical research landscape in order to plan successful and on-time clinical trials. 

TrialHub does this by aggregating thousands of data sources in real-time and combining them with local experts’ insights. 

The data provided in this article is gathered in November 2020 and is based on 17 clinical trial registries (, etc.) and analytics about thousands of clinical trials. 

If you want to get an up-to-date and/or customized feasibility for Atopic Dermatitis or need an assessment about a different indication or TA, please contact us at

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