Quintiles setting up first Asian Prime Site in Malaysia

By Nick Taylor

- Last updated on GMT

Quintiles is establishing its first Prime Site in Asia by entering into a strategic alliance with the University Malaya Medical Centre (UMMC) in Malaysia.

Partnering with UMMC continues the expansion of the Prime Site concept. Quintiles launched the initiative to improve trial efficiencies by establishing strong links to large clinical research institutions at a number of locations.

Having set up Prime Sites in the US, Europe and Africa, Quintiles has now turned its attention to Asia. UMMC, located in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, is partnering with Quintiles on the first Prime Site in Asia.

Anand Tharmaratnam, head of clinical development for Quintiles Asia Pacific, said the commitment of Malaysia’s “government, academic and private industry leaders to promoting leading-edge clinical research in the country is undeniable​”.

This has helped make Malaysia “an increasingly important player in Asia Pacific clinical drug development​”, said Tharmaratnam. Malaysia also benefits from a skilled clinical workforce, strong research infrastructure and large potential patient populations.

Quintiles first established an office in Asia Pacific in 1993. It now has 20 offices in 14 countries in the region and has conducted more than 1,300 studies. Quintiles views establishing a Prime Site in the region as a “key step​” towards delivering on the drug development potential of Asia Pacific.

Prime Site initiative

Tapping into Malaysia’s patient population will help Quintiles meet one of the goals of the Prime Site programme, namely boosting recruitment rates. Other Prime Site goals include improving efficiencies, for instance in administrative processes, and strengthening relationships with staff.

UMMC will work alongside Quintiles to improve “the efficacy, productivity and quality of clinical research​” conducted at the site, said Ikram Shah bin Ismail, director of UMMC.

Quintiles launched the first Prime Site in London, UK in 2007 and since then has added sites in the US and South Africa. Further expansion has been discussed, with Quintiles saying on several occasions that it is considering setting up in Latin America and Central and Eastern Europe.

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