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OCT New England 2016 highlights

We are very pleased that the OCT New England event was so successful this year; once again Arena International brought together senior level professionals from pharmaceutical, biotech and medical device companies working on operations and outsourcing in clinical trials across the New England region along with global service providers.

Christopher Rull from EMD Serono opened up the conference with an insightful presentation focusing on the real meaning of a strategic partnership between sponsor and service provider to consider the future of the outsourcing landscape. Christopher then went on to chair the strategic toolkit for outsourcing stream in day one.

Amy Cohen, from Aura Biosciences chaired the effectively managing trial sites and patients stream on day one which included some brilliant presentations looking at setting up trial sites, finding trial sites in high demand, patient reported outcomes and applying technology from silicon valley to drug development.

Some of the agenda highlights from day 2 included a keynote presentation from Ken Getz, Director and Associate Professor at Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development. Ken presented a session on evaluating the health and alignment of drug development and CRO landscapes where he reviewed trends of the operating environment and examined recent transactions signalling the landscape transformation. He also identified opportunities and areas of misalignment.

The medical device stream on day 2 looked at the key challenges for medical device companies including early feasibility trials, deciphering on when and how to outsource, challenges of global trials, running trials with complex medical devices and an interactive workshop on the changes in the FDA considering patient preferences.

There was an increased focus on rare and orphan diseases in 2016 with an extremely popular panel discussion on the pharma and biotech stream on day 2 discussing strategic ways of conducting a strategy for such a trial. The leading panellists were Robert Arbeit form X4 Pharmaceuticals, Sean Seyffert from Shire Pharmaceuticals and Mollie Baird from Sage Therapeutics. It has become evident over the past year or so that rare diseases is becoming an increasingly more important focus area for many pharma and biotech companies.

The programme finished on some in-depth roundtables were the delegates were given the opportunity to break out into groups and discuss working in clinical trials for gene therapies, considering the strategic partner vs. Preferred supplier, discussing the regulatory environment for medical devices and creating a reliable contract with service providers.

We look forward to another action packed agenda in 2017 – if you would like to be part of our expert advisory board please don’t hesitate to get in touch.