Accelovance inks a nonprofit partnership for melanoma trials

CRO Accelovance is teaming up with a cancer-focused nonprofit to broaden its services in oncology trials, widening its net of expert investigators.

The company signed a deal with the Minnesota-headquartered Midwest Melanoma Partnership, a multi-institutional group of physicians and scientists working to improve skin cancer drug development. Under the agreement, Accelovance will offer its biopharma clients access to MMP's 19 member research centers, augmenting its own in-house oncology expertise, the company said. Neither side disclosed financial details.

Accelovance, based in Rockville, MD, has long specialized in cancer R&D, and bringing MMP into the fold will build on the company's existing capacity, Chief Science Officer Jamie Oliver said.

"Creating this strategic alliance with MMP provides a valuable integrated service offering to pharmaceutical and biotech companies undertaking development work in melanoma," Oliver said in a statement. "This collaboration aligns key opinion leader and scientific leadership with clinical operations and trial execution-experienced staff to enhance and expedite clinical trial research and drug approval."

Meanwhile, Accelovance is in the midst of an expansion, planning to open a new research hub in Wales and add 70 jobs in the process. The move comes on the heels of Accelovance's February acquisition of the U.K.'s Altair Clinical, since renamed Accelovance Europe. That deal brought the CRO new outposts in England and Russia, plus staff throughout Europe, the Middle East and North Africa.

- read the statement