Covance teams with Indiana U. for early trials

CRO giant Covance ($CVD) has signed a deal with the Indiana University School of Medicine, bringing more Phase I studies to the school's on-site clinical research unit and giving Covance a broader footprint for early trials.

Under the deal, Covance will partner with the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI), housed within the medical school, and will have access to a 13,606-square-foot, 24-patient facility for early-phase research.

That gives Covance another state-of-the-art facility to offer its sponsors and, for Indiana CTSI, provides a sizable opportunity for its "tremendously talented biomedical scientists whose discoveries have the potential to translate into life-saving new therapies and treatments," director Anantha Shekhar said.

"Our mission is to accelerate the rate at which this research travels out of the lab and into the care of the patients who need it," Shekhar said. "This alliance with Covance will greatly enhance our ability to accomplish this vital work."

The partnership spun out of Indiana's BioCrossroads, a life sciences-focused, public-private organization designed to fuel the state's local industry, bankrolled by neighborhood heavyweights like Covance, Eli Lilly ($LLY) and Roche Diagnostics ($RHHBY).

Deborah Keller, Covance executive vice president and member of the BioCrossroads board, said the collaboration is a major milestone for both organizations and demonstrates the value of bridging the gap between industry and academia.

"It's the type of public-private partnership that really can influence breakthroughs in medicine," Keller said. "Indiana is unique in its depth and breadth of drug development opportunities, both on the corporate and academic sides, and this collaboration is a shining example of bringing the two together thanks to the work and support of BioCrossroads."

- read the announcement

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