Over the last several years, there has been a greater impetus to bringing drugs and various treatments to market more rapidly, while reducing costs. Outsourcing clinical research has offered biopharmaceutical companies an opportunity to select a variety of regions with extensive clinical expertise and more favorable regulatory environments to conduct safe, economical, and efficient clinical trials. Scotland has been a prime choice for such companies deciding where to outsource clinical research, with three of the top seven clinical research organizations (CRO) located there, along with many others that meet specific needs of today's biopharmaceutical industry.
In addition, Scotland has a reputable network of more than 40 pharmaceutical clinical trials and contract research organizations. CROs such as Quintiles ( http://www.quintiles.com/), Aptuit ( http://www.aptuit.com/), Charles River Laboratories ( http://www.criver.com/), and PPD Development ( http://www.ppdi.com/) are located there and offer an attractive setting for conducting clinical research. Other specialist CROs include Nexxus BioMed ( http://www.nexusoncology.com/), Biopta ( http://www.biopta.com/), and Invitrogen ( http://www.invitrogen.com/), which has recently made Scotland its European base. Key innovators such as these companies and others contribute to the country's strong clinical pipeline. With approximately 19 drugs in clinical development at this time, the pipeline continues to grow as nearly 75% of those projects are in Phase 2 or beyond.Aside from Scotland's research facilities, the country also has a unique patient base within which clinical trials can be conducted. Researchers looking to carry out epidemiology studies for specific diseases can form collaborations with the National Health Service (NHS) of Scotland, which provides each patient with a unique identifier. Scotland's patient population, in turn, is supportive of trials, thus giving researchers an easily accessible participation pool needed to carry out clinical trials.
Overall, R&D spending in Scotland is forecasted to increase dramatically over the next few years. Scotland offers unique capabilities to biopharmaceutical companies looking to outsource their R&D and accelerate the rate at which their products reach market.
With lower labor costs compared to other locations in Europe and the United States, Scotland is an economically advantageous choice on the road to less expensive patents. The country also enjoys a supportive environment from the government, the NHS, academia, and anchored industry leaders. As international partnerships continue to propel clinical research forward, Scotland offers the ideal location to develop the next generation of advances in the life sciences and medical industries.
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