The market for technology and services for clinical drug trials is expected to reach $68.9 billion over the next seven years. The trials, which are necessary to bring new healthcare treatments to market, are by necessity prolonged, complicated affairs.
Several companies are vying for a piece of this multi-billion-dollar pie with the offer of new digital services that can scour anonymized patient records from hospitals and university research to optimize how candidates for trials are selected, and how trials are monitored and managed.
“A clinical trial is, on average, a journey of 12 years and $2 billion to $3 billion,” says Gadi Lachman, the chief executive of TriNetX — one company that’s working on making the clinical trial process more efficient. “In those 12 years more than half the trials get amended… We suggest trade-offs to the researcher that maximizes the amount of patients that they can find.”
Part of the issue is scope. The pharmaceutical business is global, and demands global input, which is why TriNetX, recently raised $40 million to expand its operations in Asia, Europe and Latin America. The first use of proceeds has been the acquisition of the European company Custodix, to integrate their candidate-matching toolkits for research in the U.S. and Europe.
Belgian-based Custodix is active in 12 countries across Europe with a service that complements TriNetX’s stateside offerings.
“The two companies have grown up in two separate geographies but are both committed to strong compliance, governance, and a global vision for clinical research,” said Lachman, in a statement. “We now offer the world’s largest platform for clinical research, providing a more powerful resource for pharma companies and healthcare organizations, and more hope for more patients. The expansion gives us local leadership, regional support, and increased resources in the European market.”
TriNetX installs its software in hospitals around the country (and increasingly around the globe) to hoover up information about patients who could be ideal candidates for clinical trials.
Through the Custodix acquisition, TriNetX now has a launchpad from which to start pitching services to geographies in Asia as well, according to the company.
As a result of the deal, the current Custodix chief executive, Brecht Claerhout, will become the managing director of TriNetX Europe — under the brand InSite, a TriNetX company.
To date, TriNetX has raised $102 million from investors, including Merck Global Health Innovation Fund (MGHIF) along with new investors Mitsui & Co., Ltd., ITOCHU Technology Ventures, ITOCHU Corporation, MPM Capital, F2 Ventures and Deerfield Management.
“Real-world data is important when conducting clinical trials, drug research and discovery today,” said Joe Volpe, VP/managing director of Merck GHIF, in a statement. “TriNetX enables a global industry exchange and liberates data with the potential to rapidly provide answers to hard questions. With TriNetX, what previously took days or weeks to determine may often be done in minutes.”