For this year and into 2016, King said LabCorp and Covance, which are operating under two distinct segments, will focus on “creating a model to use LabCorp data to speed recruiting and enrollment for trials,” being the partner of choice around the commercialization and development of companion diagnostics and enhancing real-world trials and post-market surveillance opportunities.
More specifically, King said Covance will look to use LabCorp’s database to understand how many patients have been treated in a particular indication, which will lead to “significantly more patients and trial sites where one or more patients is being treated,” and help the company recruit and retain patients and physicians in a timely fashion.
In terms of diagnostic development, King pointed to the recent resurgence of immuno-oncology treatments in pharma companies’ pipelines, adding that almost every one of these new drugs will require a companion diagnostic. Covance will look to leverage its biomarker expertise and early stage trial support, coupled with LabCorp’s ability to bring unique assays to the table, and experience in diagnostic approval, marketing and commercialization to provide pharma and biotech companies with a combination service “that none of our competitors have anything close to.”
He also mentioned that on the diagnostic side, key initiatives are to continue to grow the company’s esoteric testing business -- particularly around BRCA, non-invasive prenatal testing, and women’s health market share.
For post-approval surveillance, King noted the 5,000 phlebotomists in LabCorp’s network, as well as a mounting database of patient info that “FDA and manufacturers will be more focused on over time,” which will “lead us to be key partner for gathering post-approval data.”
King also mentioned that by harnessing and analyzing the data to detect early safety signals, as well as how doctors are actually prescribing drugs and monitoring the progress of a disease, LabCorp could offer companies a unique opportunity to discover new indications for existing products.
LabCorp’s second wave of anticipated moves in building up over the next 12 to 18 months, according to King, will lead to further opportunities to expand its clinical business internationally, to build out its predictive analytics platform for payers and physicians, and to help make Covance’s food safety and nutritional chemistry business more robust.