ICON Plc (NASDAQ:ICLR), a clinical research organization (CRO) that helps manage clinical trials for pharmaceutical companies trialing new drugs, has recently entered into a three-year agreement with leading pharmaceutical company Pfizer, Inc. (NYSE:PFE). The terms of the contract indicate that the latter has the power to extend the service contract by another two years.
ICON and Pfizer have long been partners. In May, the partnership bagged the Clinical Research Team of the Year Award at the Clinical and Research Excellence (CARE) Awards for the successful parallel cardiovascular (CV) studies in 2015 that involved 26,000 subjects across 35 countries. The studies are designed to determine whether bococizumab can reduce CV risks among patients.
The renewed partnership agreement between ICON and Pfizer is important for both companies. The demand for CRO services is highly compelling nowadays. Consequently, ICON’s growing influence in the said industry continues to satisfy the increased demand, further diversifying its revenue portfolio.
ICON also revealed on Wednesday, according to its research findings, that most CROs are in favor of the Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) approach in clinical studies. This methodology will allow patients to collect patient-reported outcomes (PROs) data using their own smartphones. The two aspects of employing the BYOD approach include: 1) how different operating systems affect a PRO instrument’s measurement properties; and 2) technical and practical benefits and/or difficulties of using a patient’s device.
The study was designed to evaluate patients’ attitudes toward the two perceived aspects. As a result, it can provide further knowledge on how to adopt BOYD in the future. ICON, together with the help of Medidata and mProve Health, created a survey that gauged the attitudes of nearly 80 participants.
Willie Muehlhausen, ICON Vice President eCOA and Head of Innovation, noted that the company is committed to finding and devising strategic means to improve clinical trial procedures as a CRO. He added that ICON is deeply encouraged by the results of the research, backing the idea of BYOD employment among pharmaceutical companies and CROs. Given this, Muehlhausen emphasized that ICON will continue investigating the use of the BYOD approach so that together with its industry partners and global regulators, it can create better guidance for BYOD in clinical trials.