TFS HealthScience snaps up niche CRO Appletree in ophthalmology expansion

Sweden’s TFS HealthScience snapped up niche CRO Appletree CI Group for an undisclosed price in a move to expand into the growing ophthalmology arena.

TFS, which is based in Lund, Sweden with operations throughout Europe and North America said in a Jan. 23 release that the acquisition will also extend its geographic reach as well as provide additional expertise in dermatology, medical devices and pediatric studies.

Switzerland-based Appletree, which was founded in 2013 in the wake of the merger of Clinical Investigations and Appletree AG, has a presence in 11 European countries and also has expertise in regulatory affairs. 

"The strategic acquisition of Appletree will complement TFS HealthScience’s mission to be a market leader in ophthalmology research,” TFS CEO Bassem Saleh said in the release. “In a targeted business shift toward ophthalmology expertise, the company launched its elite site network initiative and site liaison services, which will shift the industry’s approach to ophthalmology clinical trial delivery.”

TFS cited a recent study published in The Journal of American Medicine that estimates research funding for ophthalmology grew 203% from 2014 to 2020. The study also forecast the global ophthalmology drug market to hit $60.3 billion by 2028, an increase of 6.4% from 2021 figures.