In an interview with PharmaShots, Dr. Pierre Pellier, CEO of CTMA, share his views on CT-SCOUT that helps to boost patient recruitment in the clinical trials for IBD
- CTMA developed the web mobile platform, CT-Scout to boost patient recruitment in the clinical trials by facilitating a quick and simple study detection for eligible patients
- CT-Scout is currently available in one therapy area i.e., IBD specifically for CD & UC. The benefits of using CT-Scout have been demonstrated in several settings
- CT-Scout showed an increase in productivity and included patients number. The company plans to expand CT-SCOUT in other therapeutic areas
Tuba: Discuss the efforts of CTMA in changing the way of detecting patients for IBD clinical trials.
Dr. Pellier: In 2014, CTMA developed a tool, CT-Scout, to promote the live matching of studies currently running at an investigational site with patients’ characteristics, hence enhancing real-time detection of clinical trials for potentially eligible patients. The application was conceived by investigators, for the benefit of investigators. The app, which is accessible from any computer or smart device, is meant to be primarily used during a normal patient-health care professional (HCP) interaction and will allow the HCP to know within a minute if one or several studies running at his/her site may be compatible with the patient’s characteristics.
Tuba: What is the working principle of CT-SCOUT & how it will help in recruiting patients?
Dr. Pellier: CT-Scout works on the premises that poor recruitment is not due to the fact that suitable patients for clinical trials are not being seen at sites, but rather that patients are there, but not offered, during the relevant short time window, the opportunity to participate in clinical trials because the HCP’s do not have the time and/or capability to quickly and efficiently match the patients’ characteristics with the basket of studies running at their investigational sites. By facilitating a quick and simple study detection, CT-Scout effectively drives more potentially eligible patients towards clinical trials. This principle is based on the inventor’s personal experience, confirmed by research indicated that only 0.2% of patients seen in the clinic make it to a clinical trial.
Tuba: What are the benefits of using CT-SCOUT? What is the significance of its new version?
Dr. Pellier: Benefits will be different, depending on the lenses. For the investigational site, beyond having a facilitating tool, the benefit is the potential to enlists all HCP’s at the site (and some referral doctors if applicable) into the recruitment effort, as they do not need to recall all major criteria for all studies running at the site. For the patients, the benefit is to increase his/her chances to be offered the possibility to join a clinical trial; for many patients with chronic diseases, clinical trials represent a true therapeutic alternative. At last, but not least, for the sponsor of the study, the benefit is to make the study highly visible to the site if a patient’s characteristics match and before a therapeutic decision is made so that more potential patients are considered for its study.
The new version, launched during fall 2020, offers an even faster detection capability, an upgraded security system, a powerful patient management tool, and an enhanced, more user-friendly interface.
Tuba: Please support the use of CT-SCOUT with clinical evidence.
Dr. Pellier: CT-Scout is currently available in one therapy area: Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). Within IBD clinical trials, the benefits of using CT-Scout have been demonstrated in several settings. In one published evidence, where CT-Scout was made available to some sites participating in a global clinical trial program run by a major pharma sponsor, the use of CT-Scout resulted in sites finally recruiting two (Crohn’s Disease) to four (Ulcerative Colitis) times more patients than sites not using the tool. Benefits going in the same direction have been observed in other programs, yet cannot be disclosed for confidentiality reasons.
Tuba: Can you put some light on the list of global companies that are currently collaborating with CTMA?
Dr. Pellier: So far, CTMA has been/is collaborating with the majority of pharma companies running global clinical programs in the field of IBD. For confidentiality reasons, we cannot disclose their names.
Tuba: How it increases the competitive advantages & site performance & visibility?
Dr. Pellier: See above. As shown above, sites using CT-Scout have shown a significant increase in productivity and included patients numbers, compared to sites non-users. For clinical trial operators, this represents a very important feature that is likely to result in increased visibility of these sites.
Tuba: What are the plans of the company to operate CT-SCOUT in other therapeutic areas?
Dr. Pellier: As indicated above, CT-Scout is only available for now in one therapy area (TA), IBD. However, and considering that the CT-Scout benefits are also of interest across all therapy areas without much exception, CTMA is working on expanding its offer to other TA’s. Priorities for development are given to TA’s which are closely related to IBD, such as other immune-mediated inflammatory diseases in dermatology and rheumatology, plus oncology.
Tuba: Are you looking for more global companies to collaborate for CT-SCOUT? If yes, how can one contact you for collaboration?
Dr. Pellier: As we are expanding our offer to other TA’s, we are expecting to progressively be in a position to collaborate with more global companies involved in the field of clinical research. We can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tuba: Will it bring a revolution to the clinical trial space?
Dr. Pellier: Shortening the duration of the recruitment phase of clinical trials by two to fourfold would probably get us close to leading a revolution indeed. But to be a realist and pragmatic, many clinical trial sponsors would already be largely satisfied with a reduction of their recruitment campaign that can be measured in a week and/or months. This CTMA can offer just a small fraction of all investigators in a study using our application.
Source: New Atlas
About Author: Pierre Pellier is the CEO of CTMA. He has 30 years of experience in executive leadership in clinical development roles at major pharmaceutical companies (SmithKline Beecham/GSK, Novartis, and Takeda). He holds an MD from Medical Universities Paris XI & Paris VII & specializes in gastroenterology