London-based Exco InTouch, which is providing Pfizer with the mobile clinical trial technology its using in its REMOTE study, has secured about $4.67 million from Scottish Equity Partners (SEP). Exco plans to use the funds to expand and take advantage of the “significant growth opportunities” in the emerging mobile patient communication market, the company’s press release stated.
Exco claims to count nine of the world’s top 10 pharmaceutical companies as customers for its mobile phone and Internet-based clinical trial services. Exco’s technology is used for “supporting patient recruitment and retention; aiding compliance; and facilitating the electronic capture of patient reported outcomes data (ePRO) during clinical trials and in Late Phase observational studies.”
In June Pfizer announced the first FDA-approved clinical drug trial involving all-electronic home-based reporting: The drug being “tested”, Detrol, is intended for use by patients with overactive bladders. However, the real purpose of the study, according to Pfizer, is to compare the mobile reporting of trial data to traditional methods of drug testing. The drug had previously been tested against a placebo during a four month 600 patient trial in 2007. Trial participants will not be required to go to a testing facility at any point during the study. Participants will not be required to live near a test site either. Pfizer plans to recruit them via online ads. Pfizer plans to mail participants the medication and them have them use diaries on their smartphones to track symptoms, conduct blood tests at home, and fill out periodic assessments online.
Exco InTouch has been in the mobile-enabled clinical assessment business since 2004. As of June 2010, the company had supported more than 500,000 patients in more than 60 countries. Exco had facilitated more than 3 million text messages for its customers.
For more on the funding news, read the press release below: Keep reading>>