Synexus, the UK-based patient recruitment and clinical trial management business acquired last December by private equity firm Lyceum Capital, says it has cut projected timelines for two just-completed Phase II studies by six months and four months respectively.

The trials for two different pharmaceutical clients demonstrate the ability of Synexus’ hub site model to compress timelines dramatically at a pivotal stage of drug development, the company claims.

Pharmaceutical companies want to speed up development times “firstly to eliminate compounds which are not going to make it and secondly to bring those that are [going to make it] to market as quickly as possible”, Synexus commented. “Phase II outcomes are particularly crucial in the go/no go decision as the huge resources for the next step can then be allocated accordingly.”

Since the numbers for Phase II trials are relatively small (usually fewer than 500 patients), “we are easily able to recruit such numbers to our hubsites”, noted Michael Fort, chief executive officer of Synexus. “This means that the pharma or CRO does not have to go out and find, recruit and sign up hundreds of doctors. They only have to sign one contract and we are up and running.”

In April Synexus announced that it now had more than 10,000 patients enrolled in late-stage studies across its 14 hub sites in six countries. The hub site model is a network of dedicated sites specialising in patient recruitment and trial management. According to Synexus, the approach improves the quality of study data, accelerates recruitment and can reduce costs to as much as a 10th of their usual level.

The company expects to double its capabilities over the next year through acquisitions and organic growth.