WCG today announced the acquisition of VeraSci, a global provider of specialty scientific expertise and eClinical software to support the design and execution of clinical trials focused on central nervous system (CNS) disorders. The addition of VeraSci, based in Durham, North Carolina, deepens WCG’s scientific and patient engagement capabilities, and complements its CNS offerings, including those available via the Company’s MedAvante, ProPhase and Analgesic Solutions businesses. With this expansion, WCG is addressing the growing demand for proven scientific and technology solutions to power remote data capture, hybrid virtual studies and fully decentralized clinical trials in key CNS therapeutic areas.
“WCG’s acquisition of VeraSci represents a natural next step and an exciting growth opportunity,” said Donald A. Deieso, Ph.D., Executive Chairman and CEO of WCG. “On behalf of WCG, I’m proud to welcome VeraSci, an organization that shares our dedication to improving the clinical trial experience for patients and sites, commitment to scientific rigor and passion for bringing novel technologies into clinical trial processes. This is a marriage of two premier global teams with a common vision.”
VeraSci provides clients around the world with innovative solutions that improve data quality in clinical trials, including endpoint and assessment services, rater training and certification, language and translation support, and eCOA and ePRO technologies. With its Pathway technology platform, which can be easily configured to meet the needs of any study across the globe, VeraSci enables the collection of high-quality data that can be used to assess symptoms, cognition and functional capacity in a wide range of therapeutic indications.
“Since our inception, we have invested in expanding VeraSci’s expertise and capabilities to include a variety of clinical and regulatory endpoints covering a range of diseases and disorders. We have also pioneered technological advances that are changing the way subjective endpoint assessments are conducted in clinical research,” said Rich Keefe, Ph.D., CEO and Co-Founder of VeraSci. “Now, as part of WCG, we are positioned to be the go-to research partner around the globe. We can scale and further strengthen our offerings, including our industry-leading CNS services and solutions.”
Dr. Keefe added: “For all of us at VeraSci, it’s truly an honor to join WCG and a thrill to work alongside colleagues who are just as committed to enabling well-designed, science-focused processes and technologies to drive more effective, efficient and patient-centric clinical trials.”
Caren Gadigian, President and Co-founder of VeraSci remarked, “Dr. Keefe and I have worked tirelessly for 16 years to develop VeraSci to where it is now. We look forward to maintaining our commitment to science and to the benefit of patients in need through our new partner.”
As an industry leader in neurocognitive measurement and with its deep therapeutic and technical expertise in psychiatric disorders, VeraSci also enriches WCG’s capabilities designed to solve the overarching challenges of CNS clinical study planning and execution. VeraSci’s experience encompasses all phases of development, from single-site, phase I studies to global phase III trials, with hundreds of raters and thousands of patients.
“Whether we’re discussing stroke or migraine, epilepsy or multiple sclerosis, or Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease, on average, developing drugs to treat CNS disorders takes 20% longer than drugs for other indications and 38% longer to secure regulatory approvals. These challenges are largely due to limitations in understanding the underlying disease, as well as in identifying and measuring appropriate clinical endpoints,” said Lindsay McNair, MD, Chief Medical Officer of WCG. “The VeraSci team is composed of highly-respected scientists, industry thought leaders and operational experts, including Dr. Keefe and Dr. Luca Pani, VeraSci’s Vice President of Regulatory Strategy and Market Access Innovation, who is also the former Director General of the Italian Medicines Agency. Their combined experience and expertise in clinical psychology, neuroscience, clinical pharmacology and regulatory science, with particular emphasis on technology-enabled, remote endpoint assessments, will be extremely valuable to clients and, more broadly, our industry, as we work together to enable advances in CNS treatments, which improvements in the clinical trial process have tremendous potential to accelerate.”
Emmanuel Olart, WCG’s Chief Applications Officer, noted: “Since our founding in 2012, WCG has been preparing for what we have seen coming as the future of clinical research, working hand-in-hand with sponsors, CROs and sites, and providing them with innovative technologies and solutions to improve clinical trial efficiency and effectiveness. Acquiring VeraSci is part of that ongoing effort, bringing clinical trials closer to patients, reducing the burden of participating and making the experience better for them via solutions that enable remote data capture, hybrid virtual studies and fully decentralized clinical trials.”
Moving forward, VeraSci will be known as WCG VeraSci. The organization will retain its leadership structure and continue to operate from its headquarters in North Carolina.
VeraSci is a clinical research company offering eClinical software, translation services, and expertise in endpoints and assessments. VeraSci brings scientific expertise, strategic innovation, and unwavering commitment to each project, helping clients worldwide develop novel therapies. Learn more at www.verasci.com.
WCG is the world’s leading provider of solutions that measurably improve the quality and efficiency of clinical research. Comprised of two segments, Ethical Review and Clinical Trials Solutions (CTS), WCG enables biopharmaceutical companies, CROs, and institutions to advance the delivery of new treatments and therapies to patients, while maintaining the highest standards of human participant protection. For more information, please visit www.wcgirb.com, www.wcgclinical.com or follow us on Twitter @WCGClinical or LinkedIn.