The Charlottesville, VA-based contract research organization (CRO) has formed a rare disease strategic advisory board (SAB). The company held its inaugural SAB meeting last week, at which there was “great excitement from all members,” ARG’s vice president of product development John Boland told us.
The SAB consists of scientific experts, patient advocates, and former executives at rare disease-focused biotechs who were selected to represent various aspects of the drug development and clinical trial process.
“Bringing together leading experts with a breadth of knowledge and experiences will enable us to assist sponsors with the development of therapies that will ultimately benefit the patient,” said Boland.
“Engaging our SAB early on in the development planning will allow us to apply previously learned experiences to hopefully mitigate some of the pitfalls sponsors may encounter throughout the course of current and future trials.”
ARG will meet with the board on a regular basis to review current program challenges, develop solutions, and review outcomes.
“We will also, on an ad hoc basis, call meetings to assist in the planning and consultation for new studies as the needs arise,” Boland explained.
The board will also serve as a resource for sponsors to discuss future development plans, which will help ARG “plan and prepare for the most efficient and effective execution of studies in hopes to avoid some of the delays and challenges that are often unforeseen in these difficult to study populations,” he added.
“Finally, the SAB will be an internal resource for ARG to ensure we are staying abreast of the latest developments in rare disease research,” said Boland, “and ARG can continue to apply these learnings and developments to our rare disease programs.”