Sweet Home for Clinical Trials, Alabama

It appears that the state of Alabama is providing a sweet home for clinical trial research. According to a new report by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), the nation’s biopharmaceutical research companies have, over the last 14 years, conducted 3,431 clinical trials of new medicines in the state.

“Research in Your Backyard: Pharmaceutical Clinical Trials in Alabama,” revealed that biopharmaceutical companies and their local collaborators are conducting clinical research in more than 10 communities including Dothan, Huntsville, Mobile, Montgomery and Tuscaloosa.

The report, unveiled at a December 4 news conference held at Innovation Depot, a business incubation facility that focuses on developing emerging biotechnology/life sciences, information technology and services businesses in partnership with the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB).

“Alabama is a leader in medical research, and that supports economic development while also improving lives,” said Governor Bentley at the Innovation Depot event. “The biosciences industry is a prime area for growth in Accelerate Alabama, our strategic plan for long-term economic development. In 2011, biopharmaceutical research companies in the state generated about $3.2 billion in economic activity and supported nearly 17,000 jobs. And while working with our outstanding research centers, the companies have conducted thousands of clinical trials of new medicines as they strive to improve patient care.”

PhrMA’s study found that more than 40% of the over 3,400 clinical trials of new therapeutic compounds companies have conducted in collaboration with the state’s research institutions have targeted the most debilitating chronic diseases including cancer, diabetes, heart disease, stroke, asthma and mental illnesses. More than 230 of those chronic disease trials are still active and recruiting patients, including 123 trials for cancer and 37 for heart disease.

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