Pharma R&D efficiency demands driving discovery services sector, says BASi CEO

By Gareth Macdonald

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Pharmaceutical industry Pharmacology

US CRO Bioanaltyical Systems (BASi) says Big Pharma demand for R&D efficiency is driving growth of outsourced drug discovery services sector.

CEO Anthony Chilton made the comments just days after the firm announced plans to relocate its in vivo discovery services​ operations from their current base in Evansville, Indiana to neighbouring West Lafayette next year.

Dr Chilton told that: “Demand is coming across the customer base. Large Pharma are being more cost effective in their R&D spending and in part look to invest in smaller innovative discovery companies for their new compounds.

Consequently, there is a greater need for outsourcing of discovery experiments and programs to expedite the time to key milestones and to increase the quality of the information so better qualified decisions can be made in identifying a lead candidate compound.

This increase in demand was the key motivation of BASi’s decision to both relocate its in vivo services and expand its capabilities with new technologies at its facilities in both the US and the UK.

“We have recently added two new LCMSMS systems in West Lafayette and two new systems in Kenilworth, UK along with an additional UPLC Sciex 5000 at our McMinnville facility. The systems provide a degree of sensitivity and speed of analysis that will improve our sample throughput and enable BASi to broaden the types of analyses we can offer our customers.”

Discovery outsourcing

Chilton’s comments fit with recent analysis by LeadDiscovery, who predicted that changing pharmaceutical industry attitudes will be a key driver for the discovery services sector.

As Pharma companies relax their conservatism towards drug discovery outsourcing the market, which was valued at $7.4bn ($5.3bn) in 2009 is expected to increase to $18.5bn by 2015​.”

They also match recent comments by contract research organisation (CRO) Charles River Laboratories, which cited growing Pharma demand for outsourced discovery services​ as a key factor in its acquisition strategy.

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