Altasciences eyes early development space, CDMO addition

By Melissa Fassbender contact

- Last updated on GMT

(Image: Getty/oatawa)
(Image: Getty/oatawa)

Related tags: Altasciences, Drug development, CRO, CDMO

Consolidating its businesses under one brand, Altasciences is transitioning to an early drug development CRO – and looking to add a CDMO to manufacture drugs up to Phase II volumes.

The mid-sized contract research organization (CRO) recently united Algorithme Pharma, Vince & Associates Clinical Research, and Algorithme Pharma USA, all under the Altasciences brand.

Altasciences CEO Chris Perkin said the company is currently transitioning from an early clinical CRO to an early drug development CRO. As part of this evolution, the company has added dedicated preclinical capabilities, including its August 2018 acquisition of SNBL​ to help bridge the gap between preclinical and proof of concept studies.

Together with its bioanalysis laboratories and multi-site clinical study management, Perkin said the company is able “to take innovator drugs from lead candidate selection to proof-of-concept with single program manager oversight.”

Additionally, the company’s business mix has changed since 2010 to reflect the early clinical drug development outsourcing market, he said.

“We started as a bioequivalence testing CRO for the generic industry and now our primary customer base is the innovator market representing over 70% of the business,”​ added Perkin.

Becoming an integrated early drug development CRO

Industry-wide consolidation over the past few years has created a “significant reduction in the choice of vendors,”​ Perkin said.

“Both in preclinical and early clinical, there is currently a gap in the mid-sized CRO market which opens up the opportunity for the smaller players to increase their market share,” ​he added Perkin.

Taking advantage of this, Altasciences has been “actively working” ​on its strategy to become “an integrated early drug development CRO by adding the key capabilities needed to take a new drug from lead candidate through the proof of concept via a single point of management.”

Additionally, Perkin said the company is looking to add a contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) able to manufacture, finish, and formulate small molecule drugs up to Phase II volumes. The CRO also aims to increase its regulatory guidance business and add “specialized clinical capabilities.”

“Our preclinical business is seeing a lot of demand, reflecting both the investment level in early drug development and the consolidation in the industry,”​ Perkin said. “In the clinical space we have seen increasing demand for cannabis studies, e-cigarette assessment, human abuse potential studies and driving simulation to assess drug side effects.”

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