CCBR-SYNARC and BioClinica, two US-based providers of specialised clinical-trial services, are merging their capabilities in medical imaging, patient recruitment, drug-development technology/consulting, cardiac safety and central-laboratory analysis.

No financial terms were disclosed for the merger, which is expected to close during the first quarter of 2014.

Jeffrey McMullen, vice chairman of another outsourcing specialist, inVentiv Health, is stepping in as chairman of the combined company while Mark Weinstein, president and chief executive officer (CEO) of BioClinica, will serve as CEO of the new entity.

Both CCBR-SYNARC and BioClinica are owned by private-equity interests – BioClinica by JLL Partners and Ampersand Capital Partners; CCBR-SYNARC by Water Street Healthcare Partners.

Public to private

BioClinica was a public company until March 2013, when it was acquired through a holding company owned by private-equity firm JLL Partners.

At the same time, JLL Partners acquired CoreLab Partners, a provider of medical imaging solutions and cardiac safety services based in Princeton, New Jersey.

These two assets were then merged under the BioClinica name to create a leading US-based provider of medical imaging services and eClinical solutions for clinical trials.

Ampersand Capital Partners, which was the majority owner of CoreLab Partners, took a significant stake in the combined company.

Synarc, a San Francisco-based provider of centralised imaging and molecular-marker services to pharmaceutical and biotechnology comoanies, combined with Denmark's Center for Clinical and Basic Research (CCRB) in July 2006, with CCBR becoming a wholly owned subsidiary of Synarc.


According to McMullen, the CCBR-SYNARC/BioClinica deal is a “ground-breaking merger that will bring together two of the industry’s most experienced providers of specialised clinical-trial services”.

That includes particular expertise in:

  • medical-imaging services, tracking the effectiveness of new drugs across multiple therapeutic areas including oncology, neurology and musculoskeletal disease;
  • a worldwide network of research centres dedicated to recruiting patients for global clinical trials;
  • state-of-the-art technology and consulting services to support the drug development process, including cardiac-safety monitoring
  • central laboratory capabilities for analysis of biological samples from clinical trials.

The merger comes at a time when demand for outsourced pharmaceutical services is projected to grow at more than five per cent per year over the next five years, the two companies noted.  

Together, BioClinica and CCBR-SYNARC have completed over 5,000 clinical trials for clients in key therapeutic areas to date.

They can draw on a network of board-certified oncologists, radiologists, cardiologists and medical researchers located in centres throughout Asia, Europe and the Americas.