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GEN News Highlights : Sep 15, 2011

PharmaNet and McGill University Health Centre Intend to Open Clinical Trial Site in Canada

In-hospital unit will cover Phase I through Phase II trials.

PharmaNet Canada and The Research Institute of McGill University Health Centre (RI MUHC) signed a letter of intent to jointly form, manage, and operate the first in-hospital translational medicine unit for the conduct of Phase I through Phase IIa studies in Canada. The facility will be located at the Montreal General Hospital and is expected to commence operation in 2012.

"By combining PharmaNet's clinical research expertise and RI MUHC's medical and scientific leadership in the understanding of diseases such as cancer, respiratory illness, or cardiovascular failure, we can positively impact the outcomes of patients facing the most complex medical challenges," notes Vassilios Papadopoulos, director, RI MUHC.

Riaz Bandali, president, early-stage development, PharmaNet, comments, "Through the joint venture, pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical companies can be assured that their therapeutic compounds will be evaluated in the safety of a hospital environment while gaining access to a state-of-the-art facility, specialized scientific knowledge, access to a broad range of patients, and unsurpassed medical and clinical development expertise."

Founded in 1984, PharmaNet is a global drug development services company offering clinical development solutions, Phase I–IV capabilities, pharmaceutical and regulatory expertise, and a spectrum of bioanalytical services. The firm initially started by offering early clinical trial and clinical lab services.

In 2000, it acquired Pharmaceutical Development Associates, adding late-stage clinical trial management services to its offerings. The 2001 takeover of Keystone Analytical gave PharmaNet bioanalytical lab capabilities.

In 2002, the company bought Anapharm to pad early-stage clinical capabilities. Later that year it picked up New Drug Services, later renamed PharmaNet Specialized Services, for its biostatistical and data-management services. In 2003, three acquisitions and one investment ensured that the firm grew its capabilities to include chemical synthesis and padded existing services.

In 2004, PharmaNet and its global subsidiaries were acquired, which formed the backbone of the firm’s late-stage development services. The deal included 11 offices in North America, 10 in Europe, 8 in Asia, and 1 in Latin America. In June 2007, the company opened Phase I facilities in Quebec City and Toronto Canada as well as late-stage offices in Brussels, Milan, and Zurich.