What key trends from your research are reflected in the Partnerships in Clinical Trials program?
Marina: That’s a great question! As far as my research goes I talked to about 200 people working in pharma, biotech, CROs and the entire clinical trial ecosystem. Patient centricity is a big buzzword in the industry and it is definitely a huge theme for the 2014 Conference.
As far as the content goes, we have an exclusive workshop being presented by Shire Pharmaceuticals, which gets hands-on into the relationship between pharmaceutical companies and their patient recruitment vendors.
We also have a keynote panel moderated by Dr. Roni Zeiger, who is formerly of Google and now CEO of Smart Patients, which brings together pharma leaders and clinical trial patients and research advocates to deep dive into what they really need from each other. That was really a key focus for us this year—making sure we involve the patient voice and get their perspective.
Last but not least, as far as new content and tying that in with patient centricity, we have a special celebrity patient perspective. We have Joe Torre. He is formerly of the Yankees and he’s with Major League Baseball and he’s actually being interviewed by the Chief Medical Officer of Janssen Pharmaceuticals on his life, his career and his battle with prostate cancer. So, that’s really exciting.
As far as the second part of your question, what surprised me and what has made the biggest impression on me that came out of our research, I would say that my biggest surprise was that although many of our attendees that are coming from big pharma companies are in long-term service agreements with their service providers, there is still a huge need in shifting the drug development model and moving towards a real partnership. Many of these key issues are addressed within certain case studies and unveiling new data within the agenda as far as how some of our pharma companies—Biogenetic, Merck Serono, Pfizer—how they are working with their partners or their new plans for 2014.
We actually have our Second Annual Executive Leadership Boardroom, which brings together about 20 senior pharmaceutical and biotech executives with leading CROs in a closed-door idea exchange session. So, that’s a popular session for our folks to attend.
What really made the biggest impression on me is speaking directly to clinical trial patients and participants in market research when I was initially putting the program together. Some of these people’s lives really depend on participating in clinical trials. So, I’m glad that we can share their voice and bring them together with the pharmaceutical executives who are really responsible for the operations and outsourcing on such a huge, huge part of their lives.
To read the rest of Marina's interview, download it here.
Partnerships in Clinical Trials will take place March 30-April 2, 2014 in Las Vegas, NV. As a reader of this blog, when you register to join us and mention code XP1900BLOG, you'll save $100 off the current rate!