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East Coast meets Far East
BOSTON & OSAKA, Japan—PAREXEL International Corp., a leading global biopharmaceutical services provider, and Osaka International Cancer Institute in August announced that they have formed an alliance to advance clinical development in Japan. The partnership will aim to drive greater efficiencies in support of patient recruitment for clinical trials in oncology and hematology, accelerating the development of innovative and effective new cancer treatments for patients.
Shogo Nakamori, corporate vice president of clinical research services for Asia-Pacific at PAREXEL, tells DDNews, “PAREXEL and the Osaka International Cancer Institute created this partnership to address challenges related to patient recruitment and matching the right studies with the right sites. With today’s trend toward patient-centric drug development, sponsors in Japan are interested in validating their study designs with input from sites and patients, and better engaging patients who participate in their studies. Through partnerships with sites, sponsors have better access to this input, which was another motivator for PAREXEL’s partnership with Osaka International Cancer Institute.
“PAREXEL and the Osaka International Cancer Institute have worked together on a significant number of clinical trials in the past. The consistently high performance of the site and focus on quality is well aligned to sponsor expectations,” continues Nakamori. “This alliance is one of several in Japan that will further enhance the global expertise, experience and innovation that PAREXEL provides to our clients as we partner together to achieve the common goal of effectively and efficiently developing and delivering important new therapies to patients.”
Oncology continues to be the largest therapeutic area in clinical trials today, and is a priority for PAREXEL as the company partners with clients to deliver new therapies to patients in need, according to Nakamori, who adds: “Osaka International Cancer Institute is a center of excellence for clinical trials in the Kansai region of Japan. Through this alliance, PAREXEL and the Osaka International Cancer Institute will work to drive greater efficiencies for local and global biopharmaceutical companies, helping them accelerate the clinical development of innovative and effective new treatments in this difficult disease area.”
“The advancement of clinical trials in oncology is imperative in the development of promising new therapies for patients in Japan and around the world,” said Dr. Nariaki Matsuura, president of Osaka International Cancer Institute. “We are pleased to be working with PAREXEL, an innovative partner with a large presence in Japan, and globally, with leading clinical and scientific expertise in oncology. Through this collaboration, Osaka International Cancer Institute will gain access to novel treatments sooner, providing a wider range of potential treatment options for our patients and allowing us to make a strong contribution to the further advancement of cancer treatments. In addition, the alliance provides both local and global sponsors with greater access to patients for better recruitment of their clinical trials, which is a key benefit for sponsors.”
PAREXEL established operations in Japan in 1995 and has more than 1,300 employees based in Tokyo, Kobe and Osaka. The company is a leading provider of biopharmaceutical services in the Asia-Pacific region, helping clients design drug development programs and conduct studies regionally and internationally. Over the last five years alone, PAREXEL has led more than 2,300 oncology projects in over 1.2 million patients across nearly 78,000 sites worldwide.
“As the industry trends toward more complicated clinical trials that involve personalized medicine, gene therapies, etc., we expect that it will only become more difficult to enroll the right patients and the competition between pharmaceutical companies will only get more intense in the region,” Nakamori notes. “At PAREXEL, we believe that our approach of partnering with sites and focusing on the patient is the best path. We are leading the industry by reducing study startup times in areas such as oncology by 45 percent and have been recognized by sites as the leader among the competition in patient recruitment across several categories. We hope to continue this trend and our vision to be a leader in site relationships, knowledge and delivering predictable patient recruitment.”
Asked about future goals for PAREXEL, Nakamori says, “We expect to further develop and nurture the relationship to benefit the clinical research environment in Japan. The ultimate benefit should always be with the patient, and as a leading global provider of biopharmaceutical services in this area, we feel it is our responsibility to help deliver that benefit.”