LaTeX and SAS for creating and assembling Data Monitoring Committee reports

adam omidpanah
Axio Research


In clinical trials, cumulative data may be periodically reviewed by a data monitoring committee (DMC). The data summary--the DMC report--is created by an independent statistician and delivered to the DMC. To minimize the risk of data error, individual tables, listings, and figures (TLFs) are generated by SAS programs. But the report comprises several such TLFs, and must be assembled in a readable, comprehensible format for DMC review. Assembling the files in a readable, automated format poses several hurdles. The potential for undetected error in assembling the report is high. We share our successful experience using LaTeX, a free to use and richly supported typesetting system for generating PDF output that meets the needs of the DMC. By curating a "tex" file, assembly of final report is possible and can meet a wide variety of formatting specifications. LaTeX is a powerful typesetting system that reliably assembles DMC reports on a wide variety of platforms and can easily be extended to other applications.