Traditional Model for pharmaceutical drug discovery, development and testing is being challenged on all sides. Strict regulatory reforms create a tougher review and approval process for pharma industry. Saving on development time and capital costs is what is to be achieved through collaborative partnerships.

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Endo Pharmaceuticals Embraces Virtual R&D to Expand Drug Pipeline

MedHealthWorld interviewed Ivan Gergel, M.D. the Executive Vice President for Research and Development at Endo Pharmaceuticals to find out more about the Endo strategy for innovation and growth.

MHW: Could you explain how this virtual R&D model works in practice?

IG:  Our Virtual Discovery Program now combines in-house experts in multiple research fields with using the know-how of research partners in India and in other countries that have strong drug discovery development track records. Our in-house team provides the essential oversight and direction and using multiple remote research teams allows us to take “more shots on goal,” to increase the likelihood of producing viable products in a shorter period of time.

Virtual R&D allows Endo to take on multiple development opportunities without investing in in-house facilities and specific capabilities that can be handled by contracting with experts. So Endo has biochemists and other scientists working in our U.S. location, but we use research labs in India and have up to 80 people working there full time under contract, plus dozens more providing support services in their labs. This model saves us development time as well as significant capital costs – it would cost almost 4 times as much to operate an equivalent R&D program entirely in the U.S

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