ABX-CRO, a full-service contract research organisation (CRO) based in Dresden, Germany and specialising in the application of molecular imaging to Phase I-III clinical trials, is pooling its expertise with VirtualScopics, a US company offering imaging solutions to accelerate drug and medical device development.

The partnership will give pharmaceutical and medical device clients access to an integrated service that leverages the combined knowledge and expertise of ABX-CRO and VirtualScopics in functional imaging, and in particular positron emission tomography (PET), single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), the two companies said.

Their complementary expertise in imaging analysis and the administration of radiopharmaceuticals creates turn-key solutions for companies looking to capitalise on molecular imaging’s ability to assess quantitatively product pharmacokinetics and metabolism, they added.

“The coupling of VirtualScopics’ robust image acquisition and analysis package with ABX-CRO’s expertise with new and evolving tracers will provide a unique and unparalleled solution with regard to the use of functional imaging in drug and medical device development,” commented Jeff Markin, president and chief executive officer of VirtualScopics.

The US company has developed a software platform for analysis and modelling of both structural and functional medical images. Combined with VirtualScopics’ expertise in advanced imaging biomarker measurement, the platform “provides a uniquely clear window into the biological activity of drugs and devices in clinical trial patients”, the company said.

ABX-CRO has been offering drug development services in nuclear medicine for more than 12 years, with a particular focus on oncology and neuroscience. Its main activities include integrated development of new PET and SPECT biomarkers, stand-alone PET/SPECT imaging solutions for therapeutic trials, and pharmacological imaging solutions (PET microdosing and dose-finding studies).