CRO-pharma collabs on clinical trials to double by 2020

Scientist

Pharma will look increasingly towards CROs in their clinical trial planning processes as the industry continues to make savings and outsource R&D.

This is according to a new report: ‘Clinical Outsourcing: Leverage Sponsor-CRO Relationships to Accelerate Trial Timelines’, from the Research Triangle Park, NC-based pharma services firm Cutting Edge Information.

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Its survey of pharma and med dev companies found that they currently share strategic planning duties with vendors at 17% of organizations--but by 2020, the number of teams planning to share these trial design responsibilities with CROs is expected to increase to 52 per cent.

The largest projected change is the level of vendor involvement in trial design activities, according to the report.

"Projected changes to sponsor-CRO working relationships owe largely to shifts within large and mid-sized pharma companies," said Sarah Ray, senior analyst at Cutting Edge Information.

"In 2014, no surveyed Top 10 or Top 50 team reported sharing trial design responsibilities with CROs or other third parties. This is drastically changing, however, as half of these surveyed teams plan to involve vendors in the clinical trial design process within the next three to five years."

Changes to other surveyed team types are more varied. Like surveyed large pharma companies, device teams also report plans to increase vendor involvement in their clinical trial design activities.

In 2014, all surveyed device teams retained trial planning responsibilities exclusively in-house. However, an estimated quarter of surveyed device teams plan to share trial design duties with CROs in the future, according to the report.

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