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  • The University of Debrecen in Elite Company

    The University of Debrecen has become a prime site of one of the world’s largest companies engaged in coordinating clinical trials on drug development. With the four-year contract signed on Tuesday, the institute has become of the most important clinical study sites of QuintilesIMS.

    “This agreement indicates that, in the opinion of a major player in the field of health industry, we do excellent work. QuintilesIMS is the world’s biggest company in the field of organising and controlling clinical trials related to drug development: through several hundred thousand partners, they conduct every fifth clinical trials worldwide. For a few years, the University of Debrecen has been among the best 1,500 of these, but now we have made it among the top 25, which now includes 11 sites in Europe”, Zoltán Szilvássy, rector, emphasised on the occasion of signing the contract on 30 May.

    As he explained, with the creation of the Coordination Center for Drug Development, the operation of the university clinic’s system of pharmacological trials has taken a new direction, which is clearly reflected in the number and quality of trials, the revenues generated, as well as the trends in the field of international partnerships.

    “Clinical trials are milestones of key importance in the development of medicines. If the University of Debrecen is able to achieve strategic positions with a company like QuintilesIMS, this will have many advantages for both parties, as well as for the country”, Szilvássy emphasised.

    In her speech, Kaye Hallett, vice president of QuintilesIMS underlined that the cooperation between the company and the university goes back to many years, and that they are very satisfied with both the quality and the quantity of work performed, as well as the overall performance of the institute, and this is exactly why they found it important to establish closer ties.

    As Leanne Magne, the regional leader of QuintilesIMS added, the “prime site” status elevates the work already started to a new level. Speaking on behalf of Quintiles Magyarország Kft., László Veres said that, based on their experience, prime sites conduct approximately 30 to 50% more trials, and the number of patients involved may even increase at a higher rate.

    Dénes Páll, director of the Coordination Center for Drug Development of the University of Debrecen, recalled that clinical trials have been conducted at the University of Debrecen for over 25 years, but in the past four years, this activity has received new impetus, and with the setting up of the Coordination Center, the number of trials conducted was doubled, while the revenue generated increased threefold, and now accounts for 1 percent of the overall income of the university.

    “Each year, 150 new clinical trials are started at the Clinical Center of the University of Debrecen, and currently approximately 400 clinical trials are under way, with the participation of more than 100 clinical specialists, 16 of whom have the highest-level, clinical pharmacological qualification. Our institute covers the whole spectrum of therapy, which means that we can participate in this work in practically every field. In the past four years, the University of Debrecen has become a leading actor in the field of drug development in Hungary, and I trust that this cooperation will contribute to making us the defining factor of the region in the upcoming years,” said Dénes Páll.

    Thanks to the four-year cooperation agreement, QuintilesIMS will facilitate the access of the patients and investigators of the Clinical Center to the clinical trials. The aim is to increase the efficiency of the clinical trials, as well as the training of new investigators, who will, as a result, be able to conduct clinical trials in accordance with the good clinical practices.

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    Szilvássy Zoltán
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