Bend Research, the US-based drug formulation development and manufacturing specialist that recently formed an alliance with contract research organisation PPD, is now teaming up with the UK’s Quotient Clinical.

The two companies have announced a non-exclusive collaboration designed to accelerate the passage of new compounds into clinical trials while expanding clients’ options for drug delivery.

Quotient Clinical is a business unit of UK-based drug development services company Quotient Bioresearch, focused on streamlining the transition from first-in-human to proof-of-concept studies and on integrating flexible drug manufacturing into clinical trials.

It was set up last year after Quotient Bioresearch took over an early-stage clinical research facility in Edinburgh, Scotland from Charles River Laboratories. This facility was consolidated with Pharmaceutical Profiles, a Nottingham, UK provider of specialist Phase I drug development services acquired by Quotient in December 2008.

The alliance with Bend Research brings together Quotient’s clinical trial design service, RapidFACT, with the US company’s advanced drug formulation capabilities. Together, they constitute a “clinical trial programme that will allow clients to screen and select optimised formulations rapidly during human testing”, the partners explained.

For example, they noted, optimal bioavailability-enhancing formulations that rely on amorphous and nanocrystalline dispersions “can be quickly identified using the highly flexible clinical trial designs pioneered by Quotient”.

The versatility of designing and implementing clinical trials using RapidFACT (Rapid Formulation development And Clinical Testing), which exploits Quotient’s integrated formulation development, drug manufacturing and clinical testing platform, will give Bend Research clients “a game-changing advantage in advancing their compounds”, commented president and chief executive officer Rod Ray.

And access to Bend Research’s leading formulation expertise will “provide our customers with reliable, rapid and efficient drug formulation platforms”, said Mark Egerton, managing director of Quotient Clinical.

"Poorly soluble compounds are becoming ever more prevalent in the industry’s pipeline, and we have many customers who require formulation help to advance such problematic compounds,” he pointed out. 

Accessing Bend Research formulations at Quotient's clinical research site also means clinical trials can be launched much more quickly than was possible before, the two companies observed. 

One client has already taken advantage of the collaboration with the successful transfer of a Bend Research formulation to Quotient’s current Good Manufacturing Practice-standard production facility in Nottingham.