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A dummy medical treatment, designed to have no pharmacological effect, administered to the control groupA group of patients in a clinical trial who do not receive the drug or treatment being investigated, for the purpose of comparison with those who do. Participants in the control group of a clinical trial are either given standard treatment (excluding the drug being studied) or a placebo. of a clinical trialA clinical trial is a research study to answer specific questions about vaccines or new therapies or new ways of using known treatments. Clinical trials are used to determine whether new drugs or treatments are both safe and effective. Carefully conducted clinical trials are the fastest and safest way to find treatments that work in people. Trials are in four phases: Phase I tests a new drug or treatment in a small group; Phase II expands the study to a larger group of people; Phase III expands the study to an even larger group of people; and Phase IV takes place after the drug or treatment has been licensed and marketed. .