In this webinar, Patrick Short, CEO of Sano Genetics, discussed opportunities to improve clinical trial patient recruitment in decentralised clinical trials (DCT) with Joss Warren, the Vice President of Strategic Accounts at THREAD Research. Their discussion covered how DCTs are changing the clinical research landscape, and what they mean for diversity in clinical trials as well as the future of precision medicine.
The link to the full webinar is here; a brief summary is below for easy reference.
Dr. Patrick Short, PhD is the Co-founder and CEO of Sano Genetics. Sano’s platform helps clinical development teams to move 5x faster at 10x lower cost by combining genetic testing, recruitment, and long-term engagement in one platform.
Joss Warren is the VP of Strategic Accounts at THREAD, a technology company providing decentralised clinical trial solutions to life sciences companies, predominantly pharma, CROs, and biotech. With a background in real-world evidence and late-phase research, Joss focusses on developing collaborative solutions with other industry-leading technologies and services that integrate with THREAD’s decentralised clinical trial platform.
Decentralised clinical trials are clinical trials that rely on technology to facilitate the collection of data in a clinical trial in a location outside of the primary research center. This means that patients can participate in clinical trials from the comfort of their own homes, reducing the need for travel and in-person visits to research centers. Decentralised trials are becoming increasingly popular because they are more accessible to a wider range of patients and make research more efficient by increasing the volume of data and the efficiency with which that data can be collected and cleaned.
The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the adoption of DCTs, but the trend was already there. DCTs are becoming the new normal for clinical research, with customers now asking how to scale decentralised clinical trials and run 50% of their trial portfolio in a decentralised format. DCTs provide a more versatile range of data endpoints quickly, making them an attractive option for pharma, biotech, and CRO companies.
Most DCTs are actually hybrid clinical trials, which means that they take a few visits that would typically happen in a research center and transition them to a virtual interaction. This approach allows for a more accessible and inclusive clinical trial experience while still maintaining some of the benefits of in-person visits.
One of the biggest benefits of DCTs is that they can be more inclusive and diverse than traditional clinical trials. Technology levels the playing field by making research more accessible to patients and to physicians who may not have the resources or capacity to run a research site. This means that patients who live in remote areas or outside of a major metro area can now participate in clinical trials from which they previously would have been excluded.
With their ability to cast a broader net, precision medicine and DCTs go hand in hand. Precision medicine is the use of data such as biomarkers to better tailor treatments to patients, and DCTs provide a way to collect more data from a wider range of patients. Becuase DCTs allow for a higher volume of participants, more data can be collected and a more comprehensive understanding of the treatment being evaluated can be obtained.
Decentralised clinical trials are changing the landscape of clinical research by making it more accessible, inclusive, and efficient. DCTs are becoming the new normal for clinical research, with sponsors asking how to scale DCTs and run a significant portion of their trial portfolio in a decentralised format. With the increasing adoption of DCTs, it is essential to understand their benefits and how they are changing the clinical research landscape. Precision medicine and DCTs complement each other, allowing for a deeper understanding of trial results, and of the participant population. The future of clinical trials is exciting, and we can expect DCTs to shape it significantly.