A service alliance involving two Chinese contract research organisations (CROs) and a specialist R&D provider based in the UK has further expanded with the addition of a third Chinese CRO.

Described as “the clear leader” for clinical trials with innovative new chemical entities (NCEs) in China, Tigermed Consulting Ltd has joined the Contract Research Organisation Service Alliance (CROSA) originally formed in May 2007 by Sundia MediTech (Shanghai) Company, United PharmaTech and HD BioSciences.

Established in 2002 and based like the founder members of CROSA in Shanghai, Tigermed offers a broad range of services including all phases of clinical trials, registration of chemical/biological drugs and medical devices, new drug development, technology transfer, data management, training in Good Clinical Practice (GCP) and market research.

According to the CROSA partners, Tigermed has a strong track record of providing these services to multinational and small- to medium-sized pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies in the US, Europe and Asia. The addition of a fourth partner to the alliance means clients “can now benefit from a seamlessly integrated full R&D service covering discovery, non-clinical and clinical development”, they said.

CROSA had already changed shape markedly since it was set up with the aim of integrating the chemistry and biology expertise of Sundia, United PharmaTech and HD BioSciences to meet growing demand from clients worldwide. Within less than a month Sundia and United PharmaTech had agreed to merge, becoming subsidiaries of the holding company Sundia Investment Group.

The alliance took on a more European flavour in February 2008 when the London-based NovaSecta joined, bringing to the table its network of relations with smaller to middle-sized pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies (‘MidPharmas’) in Europe.

Founded in early 2003, NovaSecta is a specialist R&D service provider whose current focus is organising and managing collaborations (e.g., R&D programmes, product/project licensing) for the MidPharma sector.