Quintiles rolls out contract pathology service in China

By Gareth Macdonald

- Last updated on GMT

Global contract research organisation (CRO) Quintiles hopes its anatomical pathology offering will attract the growing number of drugmakers developing cancer drugs for China.

Anatomical pathology, also known as anatomic, focuses on the detailed examination of both tissue and whole organism samples to characterise disease progression.

Quintiles’ new service, which is based at its College of America Pathologist (CAP) accredited central laboratory in Beijing, is intended to support the development of personalised cancer treatments.

Thomas Wollman, senior VP of Quintiles’ global central labs, said that: “The China anatomic pathology lab… will help our customers navigate risk and seize opportunities in the New Health, which we see as an era of unprecedented change in the biopharma industry​.”

While the global biopharmaceutical industry is expected to grow as a whole in the coming years, Quintiles' investment in China fits with the consensus opinion that the country will emerge as a key market in the near future.

For example, the Chinese State Food and Drug Administration's (SFDA) Southern Medicine Economic Research Institute (SMERI) predicts that the domestic drug market will grow by RMB 200bn ($29.28 bn) this year alone

The SMERI also forecasts that China’s pharmaceutical industry will grow 23 per cent in 2010, which is in keeping with IMS Health’s recent prediction that the country will become the world’s third largest drug market this year.

This potential was highlighted as a key driver for the launch of the new pathology service by Christopher Ung, VP of Quintiles' oncology business, who said it will “enable personalized medicine and enhance oncology research to bring medicines to market faster.”

Ung went on to say that: “Within China, we are providing the tools and infrastructure to investigate cancer and match patients with optimum treatments for their genetic makeup​.”

Much of this work is already based at the laboratory in Beijing which, Global Central Laboratories and Clinical Development Services (CDS) were consolidated there in 2008​, has been a key part of Quintiles offering.

Working in concert with the CRO’s other laboratories in Scotland and the US, the Beijing lab provides both immunohistochemistry (IHC) and Fluorescence In Situ Hybridization (FISH), as well as a wide range of bespoke biomarker assays.

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