Conducting Clinical Trials During COVID-19: Lessons for the Next Pandemic

The coronavirus is not the first infectious disease that has forced clinical trials to adapt. Zika, Ebola, and other diseases called for the world to adjust and collaborate global research efforts. With COVID-19, the rapid spread and impact on global healthcare systems forced us to change our trial management and accelerate our processes like never before. The global research community have already discovered and developed several tests and vaccines in record time through collaboration. Yet we are still working on predictive biomarker testing to identify people who are at the most risk of developing severe symptoms, epidemiological, vaccine, and genetic studies.

To facilitate testing, research, and innovation and to ensure trials continued, Cerba Research and Cerba Healthcare adapted our capabilities and facilities to push research continuity.

Register for this webinar to learn the answers to these questions:

  • Did we succeed, how fast did we adapt, and are we ready to face a new pandemic crisis in the future?
  • How did we maintain the high security and confidence of testing, and what did our reactivity and proactivity mean in the context of a health crisis?

Webinar: Leveraging Medical Laboratory Data for Patient Recruitment

Connecting real-world laboratory data from clinical sites and digitalizing patient data – the power of Decentralized Clinical Trials (DCT) to change the trials of tomorrow

Digitalization continues to provide an impetus to move away from centralized, high-cost and difficult-to-access settings to more virtual, patient-centric and decentralized clinical trial (DCT) models. Our methods need to be more patient-centric, and we need to collaborate to find remote solutions.

Thanks to digitization, we can now decentralize clinical trials and put patient data in front of research success. In partnership with Biokortex, Cerba Research will show participants of this webinar a picture of the future: how clinical trials will look tomorrow. New technologies allow us to imagine a whole new process for drug development and assays. This new way of thinking reduces costs and enhance access to data.  The world is evolving fast, and we need to develop accordingly. Agility, adaptability and digitization need to be the new keywords for a more manageable and secure development.

Watch the recording of our webinar held in April 2021 to learn more!

A Biomarker Journey in Immuno-Oncology Utilizing Immunohistochemistry

In immuno-oncology (IO) research, biomarkers present the opportunity to identify and target the patient response to a potential new therapeutic, but how can it be integrated into a clinical development plan to increase the effectiveness of clinical trials?

With immunohistochemistry (IHC) technology, biomarkers can be identified in tumor biopsies. IHC provides the possibility to better understand biomarker mechanisms in the tumor’s environment. By implementing a robust biomarker validation process, sponsors will increase the success of biomarker integration in their clinical trials. 

Watch our webinar now!

In Light of NASH: Liver Biopsy Optimization Webinar

Liver biopsies are the gold standard for Non-Alcoholic Steatohepatitis diagnosis and thus essential to NASH clinical trials, yet obtaining them is invasive, can be painful and comes with risk of complications. Making optimal use of these valuable samples is therefore critical.

In this webinar, our experts will highlight possible ways to get the most out of liver biopsies and moreover, provide an overview of alternative methodologies.

The presenters will discuss available stainings of liver biopsies for diagnosing NASH, how alternative and innovative imaging can facilitate pathologists’ reading of the samples and how the placebo effect can impact study results. Together, they will lead the discussion on how to determine the best process for trials and boost the optimal use of liver biopsies for studies.

Speakers

Fanny Estermann, PhD, Biomarker Study Team Leader, Cerba Research Montpellier

Fanny Estermann holds a PhD in Biology. She conducted successfully her work on oncolytic viruses at Salk Institute for Biological Studies (La Jolla, CA, USA), paving the way for a new type of targeted cancer therapy. As a specialist in cancer research, she then worked on senescence, cancer and metabolism at the Cancer Institute of Montpellier (ICM, France). She focused her work on metabolism dysfunctions and its consequences in the global health and cancers. She then joined the Montpellier’s University Hospital center (IRMB, France) to develop cutting-edge stem cell, cancer and senescence techniques. After gathering extensive experience in cancer research, stem cells and metabolism, she received a degree in Clinical Trials from the University of Medicine of Montpellier before joining Cerba Research, as Biomarker Study Team Leader and Regional Head of Project Management. Her main goal with her team is to deliver high quality results to clients by designing and conducting custom scientific projects to fit clients’ needs in preclinical and clinical trials. She has been closely involved in the management and development of Cerba Research biopsy processing and new stainings. She is a direct interlocutor of many NASH KOL.

Manon Motte, Head of Image Analysis, Cerba Research Montpellier

Graduated as Master in Skin Biology at the University of Lyon, Manon worked for more than 7 years in the pharmaceutical industry in a Morphology Histologic team (R&D department) for Dermatological projects. She has a strong experience in the implementation of transverse Histology/Omics technology as well as in the validation of Image analysis applications (Pre-clinical and clinical Studies). Manon is also a specialist in histological techniques and related processes. Today, Manon has chosen to extend her experience in the histology and immunohistochemistry department of Cerba Research as an imaging manager and ensures compliance with GLP and ISO17025 standards in order to ensure maximum reliability in the results delivered to our customers. Manon leads the team advancing NASH associated imaging solutions to assist in the pathologist’s evaluation at Cerba Research. This development includes the evolution of digital pathology and software assisted analyses specific for NASH histological stains and their associated scores.

Pablo Ortiz, MD, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer, OWL Metabolomics

Pablo Ortiz became MD by Universidad Autónoma of Madrid (1972-1978) where he also achieved his PhD (1984-1990, Cum Laude) and Postgraduate with Honors in the Autonomous of Barcelona University about “Biostatistics in Medicine” (1980-1981). Pablo Ortiz graduated as an MD from Universidad Autónoma in Madrid (‘72-’78), after which he continued to a Postgraduate with Honors in Biostatistics in Medicine at the Barcelona University (‘80-’81). He also holds a PhD in Biostatistics in Medicine, obtained from Universidad Autónoma.
Pablo has extensive training in managing R&D projects and clinical trials, and over 25 years of experience (1979-2004) within the Medical Department of Boehringer Ingelheim. He was named Honorary Professor at the Faculty of Medicine of Málaga University in 2000 and from 2008 to 2011, and currently teaches in the Master’s in Biotechnology program at the University Pompeu Fabra of Barcelona.  From June 2004 until November 2012, he was CEO at Digna Biotech, a company created as a spin-off of University of Navarra, which he left with 4 clinical-Stage Products (1 small peptide, 2 proteins and 1 viral vector). He was member of the Board of Trustees in Fundación Moderna (Goverment of Navarra) and 2 Biotechs companies (Bionure and ProRetina) from 2010 to 2011. From January 2013 to date, Pablo is head of the Biotech division at Pivotal (Clinical CRO). He joined OWL in January 2013 as a senior consultant, in June 2014 as Chief Executive Officer and is currently its Chief Scientific Officer. He has published more than 30 papers in international peer-reviewed journals.

Biomarkers in Immuno-Oncology: Identifying and Implementing Biomarker Testing from Exploratory Research to Clinical Trials

Biomarkers are at the heart of Immuno-Oncology. In this webinar, we will walk you through three case studies to highlight the importance of biomarkers, using different methodologies. Why do some patients respond better to I/O therapeutics than others? What is Flow Cytometry’s role in immunophenotyping? Where does Immunohistochemistry come in? What is the Tumor Mutation Burden, how does it impact I/O research?

Amanda Finan, Head of IHC R&D Cerba Research, Nithianandan Selliah, Global Head of Flow Cytometry Cerba Research, and Raouf Ben Abdelali, Head of the Hematology and Oncology Division, Cerba Laboratory will guide you through their respective fields of expertise and answer the above questions.

Challenges of Covid-19 Testing: Which Test to Use?

Are you using the right Covid-19 test? In the race to contain the COVID-19 pandemic, efficient detection of SARS-CoV-2 was and still remains the cornerstone. On January 23, the first in-house RT-PCR assay was published, quickly followed by the development of multiple commercial kits.

During the webinar, our Cerba biologists will walk participants through the overview of our available testing, discuss the reliability of tests, the current limits in Covid-19 testing, and which sample is the most efficient in each case.

Lastly, Cerba Research’s partner Fulgent will discuss NGS testing and how much we know about the analysis of the virus and its mutations.