Algorithme Pharma has increased early stage patient access by teaming with a Montreal hospital, and says it provides a breadth of therapeutic areas not normally associated with mid-sized CROs.
In forming a strategic partnership with Canada-based Hôpital Maisonneuve-Rosemont (HMR), the contract research organisation (CRO) will be able to offer sponsors increased patient access in a number of key therapeutic areas, including Hematology, Oncology, Nephrology, Ophthalmology and Metabolic Diseases.
Whilst small and mid-sized CROs are increasingly looking at mergers and consolidation to compete with larger firms (such as in the case of PRA and RPS earlier this year), Algorithme’s VP Global Business Development, Catherine Konidas, told Outsourcing-Pharma.com this private-public partnership offers the firm an alternative.
“In order to meet the breadth of specialty areas that our clients require, it would take a lot of ‘consolidation’ between similar sized, therapeutic area focused CROs,” she said.
“Collaborating with a hospital research centers allows us to have access to many of these therapeutic area experts and patients, in one organization, and as needed.”
This is the second local alliance Algorithme has been involved with in the last few months, she continued, and this fulfills the increasing trend for sponsors requiring more information on their lead drug earlier in development, by providing “patients and medical specialists in key therapeutic areas that require hospital based treatment.”
Private and Academic Partnerships
Teaming up with a hospital that is affiliated with an academic organisation can offer a number of advantages for a CRO, Konidas explained.
On top of the combination of medical specialists focused across a number of therapeutic areas and working directly with patients in different stages of the diseases, it allows “clients access to cutting edge research and knowledge to help in the design and interpretation of the study results.”
However, there are some challenges in this sort of collaboration mostly in ensuring the medical specialist remains focused on the patients and the studies, she added, without getting “bogged down by the administrative tasks that go along with such a controlled and regulated environment.”
Konidas continued: “Teams with a clear division of responsibilities have been set up in order to ensure there is oversight such that the administrative tasks are handled by separate, trained staff dedicated to supporting the specialists.”