PPD collaborates to strengthen vaccine testing business

By Nick Taylor

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Influenza

PPD and Southern Research are collaborating to strengthen their pandemic and seasonal influenza development services by working together on client bids and projects.

Southern Research has developed seasonal assays and reagents and these will be transferred to PPD, bolstering the contract research organisation’s (CRO) vaccine testing business at a time when pharma has renewed its interest in the sector.

"This key collaboration enhances PPD's position as the first CRO to offer a comprehensive menu of vaccine assay development and testing services to support vaccine clinical trials with faster, more cost-efficient laboratory solutions​", added Christine Dingivan, chief medical officer of PPD.

In return PPD will refer clients to Southern Research’s preclinical influenza and clinical pandemic or highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) testing business.

Southern Research can provide these clients with “an unmatched breadth of influenza services​”, according to Nancy Gray, the company’s vice president of corporate development.

These services, coupled to PPD’s offering, span the “full spectrum of influenza research capabilities with highly respected bench to market support​", added Gray. Southern Research has reached this position through collaborations with CROs and leaders in the vaccine field.

CROs eye vaccine market

Pharma’s renewed its interest in the vaccine sector, having previously reduced investment in response to low margins, has been noted by CROs which have moved to tailor their services.

Encorium has refocused operations on clinical trials of vaccines, believing it has a competitive edge in the sector over larger rivals, and Synexus has been promoting its ability to recruit patients for vaccines studies.

PPD has now moved to strengthen its testing business, which will allow it to expand “partnerships with influenza vaccine developers in the commercial, government and non-profit sectors​”, according to Dingivan.

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