PPD cozies up to trial site group with an eye on enrollment

PPD's Acurian subsidiary has expanded its relationship with the Society for Clinical Research Sites, a group representing thousands of trial outposts around the globe, focusing on improving patient recruitment.

Acurian, which specializes in enrollment and retention, is now a site engagement partner with SCRS, promising to launch an advocacy group and share its expertise with the organization's membership. Taking a page from the likes of TransCelerate BioPharma and Eli Lilly ($LLY), the group will create a channel for communicating and sharing tools with its many trial sites. The PPD company was already a global impact partner and will maintain that designation, SCRS said.

The group represents around 30,000 investigators and research staff at more than 2,300 sites in 39 countries, aiming to better integrate sponsors, CROs and investigators in the R&D process. The organization has partnered up with Icon ($ICLR), INC Research ($INCR) and others to expand its reach, and deepening its relationship with Acurian will help it further enrich its member programs, President Christine Pierre said.

"Acurian's commitment to promoting greater site sustainability across the clinical research landscape is directly aligned with SCRS' mission, and will enhance quality and efficiency in the conduct of clinical trials globally," Pierre said in a statement.

PPD acquired Acurian for an undisclosed sum back in 2013 in an effort to expand its patient recruitment capabilities, and the CRO has been steadily expanding ever since. This year, the company launched a joint venture with Japan's Shin Nippon Biomedical Laboratories, teaming up on clinical research in that country. In December, the CRO partnered with the data collection experts at ERT, and, in September, PPD bought out the discovery-focused outfit X-Chem in an acquisition designed to bolster its early-stage capacity.

- read the statement