Via its Taiwanese subsidiary, PRA Taiwan, the CRO has formed alliances with South Korean company LSK Global Pharma Services and Mediscience Planning (MPI) in Japan.
The aim is to “meet the growing demand for pan-Asian clinical trials,” according to Edward Ian, senior director of clinical operations for PRA-Asia Pacific.
The terms of the collaborations include the joint management of multinational clinical trials in Asia as well as related services such as study monitoring and data management, according to PRA.
“The addition of regulatory intelligence and investigator sites in Japan through Mediscience, and in South Korea through LSK, bolsters PRA’s ability to serve clients in Asia,” it added.
A number of CROs have expanded their presence in Asia to serve both a growing customer base of Asian companies, as well as multinationals that are moving their clinical activities overseas to seek cost advantages and new pools of clinical trial subjects.
Clinical research in the Asia-Pacific region grew more than 50 per cent from 2005 to 2006, according to CenterWatch. The region's population of 3.9 billion includes a lot of treatment-naïve patients and sophisticated healthcare systems which make recruitment of patients and carrying out trials easier.
In addition to its Taiwanese subsidiary, PRA already has offices in Australia, China and India and has said it plans to open a South Korean unit by the end of March.