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Clinical trials are a growing cross-section of modern medicine and pharmaceuticals, expecting significant growth in the coming years. The valuation of global clinical trials is $44.3B in 2020, with projected growth of 5.7% annually until 2028, show the models of Grand View Research.
Clinical trials have several avenues of growth, including personalized medicine. The market for precision medicine is not only going to expand beyond the average growth for all trials, but pose additional challenges of data collection and personal data preservation. The growth in this market is expected to be 11.7% on an annual basis in the near future, outpacing the pipeline for other clinical trials.
An additional pressure will be placed on the clinical trial sector by the uncertainties surrounding Covid-19 and the longer-term effect of the pandemic. In 2020, patient trials faced direct headwinds and some were canceled. In the future, safety precautions and stricter tracing may be the hallmarks of post-Covid trial organization.
Within this climate, clinical trial startups are attempting to fine-tune the use cases for blockchain record-keeping. We looked at several projects and their technique to tackle the complexity of personal and medical data with the technical strengths and weaknesses of blockchain technology. By preliminary estimates, blockchain tech may add up to $3B in value to the sector until 2025, shows intelligence by PreScouter. The trends tracker estimates up to 70% of leaders in life sciences research will acquire blockchain functionalities in the coming years.
Innoplexus specializes in Life Sciences research, offering tools that combine artificial intelligence and blockchain. Based on the expertise of a 250-strong team, Innoplexus offers solutions for drug discovery and clinical trials.
Innoplexus has a multi-stage process to tailor research designs for its clients. At the core is its AI-powered data crawling mechanism especially built for biological and medical sciences. Data normalization and ontology building to supply the AI tools with data also add to the research design.
Blockchains are tailor-made for clients, relying on distributed, but private communication. Due to the sensitive nature of the data, private blockchains ensure constant communication between a selected group of partners.
Innoplexus specializes in data-driven drug creation, especially for early-stage biotechnology companies. On the side of communication and blockchain, Innoplexus offers full GDPR compliance, as well as patient privacy through data anonymization.
ClinTex aims to provide data and blockchain services where the pharmaceutical industry is its primary customer. The driving idea behind ClinTex is to improve the efficiency of clinical trials through technology. By its own estimate, ClinTex suggests clinical trials may be running up inefficiencies to the tune of $600,000-$8M per day, while also delaying the launch of valuable drugs to market.
ClinTex already launched the Clinical Trials Intelligence token (CTi) toward the end of 2020. To boost adoption, ClinTex incentivizes current token holders through a six-month staking program. During that time, locked tokens will earn up to 40% interest if locked for the full period.
The additional 18.5M tokens, worth close to $1M, will be distributed to early investors that acquired CTi during the early stages of product development. CTi will be the only asset available to use the Clinical Trials Intelligence platform in the future to gain access to clinical trial data. CTi is available both as an Ethereum-based token and as an asset on Binance Smart Chain, a lower-fee network for faster transfers.
With its drive for adoption, ClinTex combines a publicly tradable token, available on KuCoin, with a tailored solution to build faster, cheaper clinical trials. Interest in the project has boosted the price of CTi since March 2021, riding on the bull market trend for tokens.
Embleema is another service offering to build clinical trials from scratch, including the design and participant recruitment. This startup has built its proprietary Virtual Study Suite to generate research design in an intuitive, traceable fashion.
Blockchain communication then ensures confidential, secure and easily available information. Embleema already tracks data on several socially significant conditions among the US population, as well as gathering new intelligence on Covid-19 incidence and effects.
Embleema is notable for running HIVE, the only US FDA-approved information system for biological big data and genomic information. Through HIVE, FDA has performed numerous drug or genomics studies, after full regulatory approval of the platform.
The Embleema project is also the founder of the Health Blockchain Consortium, aggregating startups that match biotechnology data with blockchains. Embleema is one of the projects using private blockchain capabilities, without issuing a public digital asset.
Doc.AI aims to be a hub for data to serve the need of insurers, healthcare providers, and pharmaceutical companies. The project removes barriers to entry, by allowing users to generate immediate mobile-based, fully functional studies, reaching millions of potential respondents.
Doc.AI was created in 2016 with the aim of building both researcher and consumer-directed apps. In 2017, the Silicon Valley startup started one of its first tests of blockchain technology. The chief aim of Doc.AI was to protect and encrypt user data, thus preserving the anonymity of survey respondents, while granting access to researchers.
With Doc.AI, respondents can choose to participate in open studies for socially important health conditions. There is also the option to train medical AI with data, with the goal of anticipating seasonal allergies.
Triall is also on a mission to streamline medical trials and deliver new pharmaceuticals faster. The chief challenge of contemporary researchers is the need to make trials fully digital. Triall has created a network of microservices based on blockchain communication, to build a system of connections between the various processes and data sources in a clinical trial.
Triall is already operating one complete clinical trial product, Verial eTMF, with six research partners. Through its consulting services, the startup has also worked with more than 100 international clinical trials. Triall also has a lightweight product, Triall CTMS, to create and manage clinical trials. Additionally, the team has launched Atena PRM, a vendor selection software utilizing blockchain-based voting to discover the best trial vendors.
Triall is still in a token pre-sale stage, with few details known about its upcoming digital asset. For now, the startup is still gathering a pre-listing database of potential stakeholders and investors.
BioPharma Ledger is a specially created blockchain platform, aiming to streamline the processes of research management. The platform operates all major elements of digital life sciences, including patient data privacy, FDA submissions, clinical trial data management and other processes between patients and providers.
BioPharma Ledger offers specialized, private blockchain solutions, which emulate the Ethereum smart contract capabilities. The biopharmaceutical startup was a branch of Alten Calsoft Labs, a digital transformation solutions provider. The blockchain trial data solution branched out in 2019, among rising interest in blockchain technology.
BioPharma Ledger is aimed at the international clinical trials market. One of its first partners is Cinlogix, the originator of many clinical trials in Europe, Asia, South America, and the USA. BioPharma Ledger is also part of the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA), an open-source collaboration on blockchain technology. For now, BioPharma Ledger relies on private blockchain solutions, with no goal of issuing its own tokenized assets.
Blockchain additions to clinical trials thus branch out depending on the project’s vision.
The latest addition follows the general digital transformation of the sector, and can add new incentives and money-saving tools, alongside a confidential, error-proof system to access data.
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