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Consider the huge costs associated with slow research start-ups, which delay trial completion and, as a result, slow time to mark. These and other clinical development issues necessitate creative solutions, which can and should be provided by strategic alliances between sponsors and CROs.
FREMONT, CA : The pharmaceutical industry has long been known for its strategic partnerships. There are numerous arrangements for in-licensing, out-licensing, joint research, and codevelopment between and among biopharmaceutical companies, as well as with academic research institutions. As per one article, approximately 33% of drugs in the top ten pharmaceutical firms' pipelines were produced elsewhere. According to one survey, over 80 percent of biopharma respondents state their alliance participation has risen in the last five years.
What are the Advantages of Forming Strategic Partnerships with CROs?
There is nothing wrong with using Contract Research Organizations (CROs) to support internal workers during busy times of clinical growth. It is much better to do so with clearly aligned goals on both sides than to call a relationship a partnership without specifying how either side will prosper and what each side will need to contribute to and invest to ensure success.
Simultaneously, arms-length transactional arrangements discourage investment, limiting the opportunity for quality improvement, creativity, and learning with and from CROs. Consider the statistics from one study: At least one amendment is required in more than half of all protocols (with later stage trials having the highest average number of amendments). One-third of all amendments should have been stopped. Each amendment lengthens a clinical trial by about two months and costs 500,000 dollars.
Consider the huge costs associated with slow research start-ups, which delay trial completion and, as a result, slow time to mark. These and other clinical development issues necessitate creative solutions, which can and should be provided by strategic alliances between sponsors and CROs. Indeed, relative to sponsors with the highest incidence of delayed and over budget trials, sponsors with the lowest incidence of delayed and over budget trials were more than four times as likely to say that their CROs had delivered innovation, according to another study. Jointly and concretely established innovation goals, a high level of knowledge sharing, a zeal to invest (time, resources, effort), a tolerance for failure, and a high level of appreciation for different ideas and perspectives were all key enablers of such innovation.