How tri­al in­no­va­tion in Aus­tralia is get­ting ther­a­pies to pa­tients soon­er

You might have heard Aus­tralia is a great place for phase I. No IND re­quire­ment to be­gin phase I tri­als is dri­ving a grow­ing num­ber of com­pa­nies to run their ear­ly phase tri­als in Aus­tralia. With start-up times 3-6 months quick­er than in the US and a favourable cur­ren­cy ex­change, tri­als can be 20% cheap­er. As a bonus, com­pa­nies with an­nu­al rev­enues less than AUD$20M, can re­ceive a 40+% R&D in­cen­tive re­bate. This pro­gram re­turns cash which can make your fi­nal tri­al price less than half com­pared to US al­ter­na­tives

Lin­ear CEO Michael Win­lo

But as Lin­ear CEO Dr Michael Win­lo ar­gues, there are still ways to make ear­ly phase re­search even more ef­fi­cient. “Cloud-based tools like eS­ource can stream­line site process­es and com­press time­frames. We re­cent­ly wrapped up a very com­plex, phase I healthy vol­un­teer study in record time for a ma­jor Bio­phar­ma. The project re­quired groups from around the world to work with tri­al da­ta close to re­al-time and this was on­ly pos­si­ble be­cause of our eS­ource sys­tem.” Dr Win­lo added, “Com­pa­nies tak­ing ad­van­tage of our ge­og­ra­phy and em­brac­ing our tech­nol­o­gy will be able to take promis­ing new ther­a­pies to their pa­tients soon­er.”

In­no­va­tion is cen­tral to Lin­ear’s strat­e­gy and cul­ture. This means be­ing ear­ly adopters of tech­nol­o­gy (first site in Aus­tralia to use eS­ource) but al­so in de­liv­er­ing new ser­vices for pa­tients (first site out­side NSW to par­tic­i­pate in the Aus­tralian Can­cer Ge­nom­ic Med­i­cine Pro­gram). As an award win­ning ser­vices busi­ness[1], Lin­ear al­so recog­nis­es the im­por­tance of hav­ing great peo­ple. “The task of tak­ing an ex­per­i­men­tal drug in­to hu­mans for the first time is a very del­i­cate, high­ly co­or­di­nat­ed process that re­quires very con­sci­en­tious staff, rig­or­ous process­es and ex­ten­sive safe­ty pro­ce­dures,” states Dr Win­lo.

Jay­den Rogers
VP glob­al part­ner­ing

Aus­tralia has seen strong growth in ear­ly phase clin­i­cal tri­als over the last five years. Ini­tial­ly dri­ven by de­mand from the US. “At Lin­ear we are see­ing in­creased de­mand from the US but al­so from Asia, led by Chi­na and Japan” states Jay­den Rogers — VP Glob­al Part­ner­ing at Lin­ear. “What’s re­al­ly ex­cit­ing is we are see­ing a lot of nov­el and po­ten­tial­ly first-in-class com­pounds com­ing out of the Asia-Pa­cif­ic re­gion. It is one of the rea­sons we have built a ded­i­cat­ed Chi­na cus­tomer suc­cess team.”

Lin­ear Clin­i­cal Re­search is a pri­vate, not-for-prof­it tri­al team based in Perth, West­ern Aus­tralia. On the GMT+8 time­zone, Perth is “time-aligned” with 24% of the world’s pop­u­la­tion. Perth is al­so rat­ed as one of the most liv­able cities in the world be­ing home to a world-class health sys­tem, med­ical re­search and great weath­er.

Perth al­so has a dis­tinct­ly en­tre­pre­neur­ial spir­it. This is ev­i­dent in the work done by 2005 No­bel Prize win­ners Bar­ry Mar­shall and Robin War­ren as well as lead­ing mol­e­c­u­lar ge­net­ic sci­en­tists, Steve Wilton and Sue Fletch­er who pi­o­neered ex­on skip­ping lead­ing to the dis­cov­ery of the first tar­get­ed ther­a­py for Duchenne Mus­cu­lar Dy­s­tro­phy. “We think big, and once peo­ple ex­pe­ri­ence Perth’s lifestyle they tend to set­tle, which is cre­at­ing ex­cit­ing col­lab­o­ra­tive net­works to fa­cil­i­tate clin­i­cal tri­als and long-term fol­low up of pa­tients and their fam­i­lies,” says Pro­fes­sor Pe­ter Leed­man, Di­rec­tor of the Har­ry Perkins In­sti­tute of Med­ical Re­search and Chair­man of Lin­ear Clin­i­cal Re­search.

No mat­ter where in the world you are based, if you’re plan­ning an ear­ly phase re­search project, we’d love to help. Please con­tact Lin­ear’s Part­ner­ing and Clin­i­cal So­lu­tions team at part­ner@lin­ear.org.au or down­load our whitepa­per here.

Lin­ear Clin­i­cal Re­search Team

Click on the im­age to see the full-sized ver­sion


[1]Lin­ear was win­ner of the 2017 Na­tion­al Ex­port Award for Busi­ness Ser­vices ex­cel­lence.

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