UK-based contract research organisation (CRO) Chiltern International has announced a strategic partnership with endpoint, a US specialist in Interactive Response Technology (IRT) systems which claims its PULSE platform can shorten clinical studies by as much as 40%.

Chiltern is taking a minority stake in San Francisco-based endpoint, set up in April 2009 by chief executive officer (CEO) Jonathan Dole and by Tom O’Connell, who focuses on client services and operations.

According to Chiltern’s CEO, Glenn Kerkhof, Dole and O’Connell “are bringing a new level of energy and innovation to Interactive Response Technology services to provide solutions which are meeting clients’ needs for flexibility, efficiency and savings while ensuring the highest possible quality”.

Launched in January, PULSE is a fully configurable platform that enables users to design and deploy IRT systems such as Integrated Voice Response and Integrated Web Response (IVR/IWR) for clinical trials.

According to endpoint, the time and cost savings available with PULSE stem from the platform’s ability to provide pre-validated programmes, so that project managers do not have to spend time reconfiguring studies and can make mid-trial changes “on the fly”. PULSE simultaneously designs systems that can be accessed via telephone, the web or mobile devices.

Kerkhof said the decision to invest in endpoint “is representative of our commitment to seek collaborations which connect Chiltern and our clients with leading-edge solutions, as well as our belief in the technology that endpoint has developed”.