Now that Cetero Research's investors have stepped in to buy out the scandal-plagued, early-stage CRO from bankruptcy, the new owners are systematically purging the organization of its tainted identity in an effort to start fresh.
With Freeport Financial leading the way, the old Cetero name is now gone, replaced by PRACS Institute. The HQ in Cary, NC, is being replaced by a new HQ in Fargo, ND. And a new management team led by a new CEO--James Carlson--will work to win back the trust of developers who have turned to the organization to conduct thousands of studies in the past. John Pottier, formerly of Worldwide Clinical Trials, was brought in to head up business development.
Cetero's problems have been carefully chronicled from the day the FDA issued its blistering report accusing investigators in its Houston lab of falsifying data. Regulators reported last year that there were 1,900 instances over a 5-year period in which the lab technicians cited for doing research work weren't actually in the facility. And the FDA concluded that "if the foundation of the laboratory is corrupt, then the data generated will be also."
As news spread the official rebuke triggered a financial crisis at the company as new work dried up, forcing the company to seek bankruptcy protection and leading the investors to take over. The focus at PRACS will be on turning the page, building on the early-stage reputation they had built before the FDA stepped in to reestablish its position in the industry.
- here's the press release