Ownership of the the newly created company, called Cenduit, will be split 50/50, although financial details of the deal were not disclosed. Cenduit will provide automated solutions for the running of clinical trials based on interactive Response Technology (IRT) - a platform that integrates patient interaction systems through a combination of Interactive Voice Response (IVR) systems, web interfaces and handheld electronic patient diaries. The use of eClinical software solutions in clinical trials is gaining in popularity with pharmaceutical, biotechnology and contract research organisations (CROs), and according to Jogin Desai, Cenduit's newly appointed CEO, IVR is used in an estimated 30 per cent of all Phase I-III clinical trials, and this rate is expanding rapidly. The companies therefore expect the use of IRT to grow as pharma companies look to streamline and better control time and costs during drug development processes. Quintiles and Thermo Fisher are already offering these types of services separately, but by teaming up they expect to offer an integrated 'one stop' service to support drug companies in their clinical development programmes. "With Cenduit, we have combined two leaders - the clinical supply chain expertise of our Fisher Clinical Services business with the clinical development expertise of Quintiles - to offer a scalable, seamless technology platform," said Marijn Dekkers, CEO of Thermo Fisher Scientific. Quintiles spokesperson Dick Jones told Outsourcing-Pharma.com that the joint venture will own Thermo's Fisher Automated Clinical Trials Services (FACTS) platform - an automated clinical trials service, which includes IVR and more advanced communication technologies. Cenduit will allow customers to automate certain processes of their clinical trials, including during patient enrolment, dosage distribution and the recording of patient's reactions. "Electronic patient diaries for example allow patients to send data directly to a database via a handheld personal digital assistant without having to and see a physician who records manually the information," said Jones. Cenduit was officially launched on 1 May and currently employs 150 staff from both Quintiles and Thermo Fisher. "With the market growth, we expect this number to reach 180 staff by the end of the year," said Jones.