Alpha Collaboration

Improving perinatal health through large, simple trials

Our Aims

To save and improve the lives of mothers and babies worldwide through large, simple randomised studies enrolling 5,000 to 50,000 or more.

To work with clinicians, researchers, parents, policymakers and funding agencies, students and the community to: 

  • identify key questions for large simple trials of treatments that may reduce deaths and disability
  • answer those questions faster and more reliably than ever before

Together we can build the Alpha Collaboration

Researchers and Trialists

Frontline Professionals

Funders and Philanthropists

Policy Makers and Governments

Ethics Committees and Regulators

School Students and Teachers


Why large, simple trials are important 

APTS – a minute’s delay could make a lifetime of difference 

Compared with the first 10 years of this century 50,000 more very premature babies will survive without major disability in the next 10 years – if caregivers worldwide simply delay cord clamping for 60 seconds or more in babies who do not need immediate resuscitation.  

That equates to 13 per day – or one more survivor without major disability every 2 hours.  

These forecasts are based on the 2 year follow up results of APTS – the Australian Placental Transfusion Study – which were published in The Lancet Child and Adolescent Health in December 2021. 

APTS enrolled 1531 babies born before 30 weeks gestation in 25 centres in 7 countries in the largest-ever randomised trial of delayed versus immediate cord clamping.  By reliably answering an important question it will improve thousands of children’s and families’ lives. 

Yet APTS took 12 years – from 2009 to 2021 – to answer that question. Can we do better? 

Could we have helped more babies and families sooner? What can perinatal trials learn from the multi-arm multi-stage adaptive randomised trials and individual participant data prospective meta-analyses (IPD PMAs) that rapidly identified effective interventions in COVID-19? 

By collaborating globally and integrating digital technology, can we answer important questions with randomised studies run at least ten times larger and faster than APTS – for example by recruiting 250 centres instead of just 25 – and at one-tenth the cost?