The new CRO, Bridgetech Medical Technologies Research (BMTR) is part of a new venture between US firm Bridgetech Holdings International and the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Playing a part in the decision to open a CRO in the region was the fact that Hong Kong plays a strategically important role in China's healthcare development, according to Pro-vice-chancellor of the Chinese University Kenneth Young. In addition to running clinical trials the site will also help facilitate regulatory approval from the Chinese regulatory authorities, as well as the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The life science market in China is one of the fastest growing markets in the world and demand for contract services continues to escalate as the domestic pharma market continues to mature and many of the world's top pharma companies also begin to set up low-cost manufacturing operations in and around the country. Asia, led by China, has the largest pool of patients with cancer, cardiovascular and infectious diseases - therapeutic areas that are now accounting for 70 per cent of all new drugs.