NEW YORK – Consumer genetics provider 23andMe and clinical trial firm TrialSpark said today that they are combining efforts to offer a genetics-informed clinical trial support product. The companies also announced a request for proposals from sponsors interested in conducting trials in a set of defined areas, with priority review promised to any protocols submitted by Nov. 15.
According to the partners, their joint offering will combine 23andMe's ability to contact its genetic test customers who have opted to participate in research with TrialSpark's site selection, activation, and trial execution services. Based on a particular customer's goals, 23andMe will identify members of its own customer base with a particular genetic or phenotypic profile around whom a trial can be designed and implemented, with the support of TrialSpark.
Areas for which the partners are currently accepting proposals include dermatology, gastroenterology, pulmonology, endocrinology, ophthalmology, inflammatory diseases, neurology, women's health, and rare diseases. The companies believe that their service can help address bottlenecks, like patient recruitment and trial site accessibility, that hinder the advancement of new drugs.
The companies described 23andMe's role in the enterprise as involving contacting research-consented customers "in a personalized way to ensure enrollment actually takes place." The company estimated that currently, more than 80 percent of its customers have opted to participate in research and over 60 percent have logged in to their account in the last 90 days.
"TrialSpark has already made significant efforts toward expanding access to clinical trials by creating sites where patients live and with doctors they already see. With 23andMe we can empower even more patients to access clinical trials at their local doctor's office," Benjamine Liu, CEO and cofounder of TrialSpark, said in a statement.
Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.