The Drug Information Association is offering a meeting on optimizing electronic data capture. It’s in Weston, Florida (near Ft. Lauderdale) on November 12 and 13. There is information here.

Fast Track Systems, a developer of tools for clinical trial design collaboration and communication, announced the successful ODM 1.0 compliance certification by CDISC of its TrialSpace Designer XCP, a clinical trial design and protocol-authoring tool. The official certification means users of Designer XCP can be assured that the application is fully compliant with CDISC standards, allowing vendor-neutral and continuous data interchange among various clinical information systems. Ed Seguine, CEO of Fast Track said, “Achieving ODM certification is an unambiguous statement of our commitment to the open-source standards CDISC has developed. This technical accomplishment is also a further validation of the moves by several top 10 pharmaceutical firms to implement comprehensive, standards-based eClinical strategies.”

Pharm-Olam International, a full-service contract research organization (CRO), will host complimentary seminars on conducting clinical trials in the Southern hemisphere in Latin America and South Africa. The seminar will focus on how these regions differ from other research markets. The seminars will be held in San Francisco on October 17; in La Jolla on October 19; in Cambridge, MA, on October 22; in Princeton, NJ, on October 23; and King of Prussia, PA, on October 24. Frans van Wyk from Pretoria, South Africa, will discuss South Africa’s strategic location for clinical trials across many therapeutic areas. Jorge Fiuza, Buenos Aires, Argentina, will present information on Latin America’s drug development potential.

Parexel International, a global contract research organization, announced the acquisition of Taiwan-based CRO Apex International Clinical Research. Parexel has increased its forward-looking service revenue guidance as a result.

Is the regulatory landscape changing in India? That’s the word from Vasudeo Ginde, a clinician with over 20 years experience in the Indian clinical research industry. He’s currently president and managing director of Indian CRO iGATE Clinical Research and tells Outsourcing Pharma that, the Indian CRO industry has experienced definite improvements. “The Indian drug regulatory body has pledged to start auditing clinical trial sites, CROs and pharma companies involved in clinical research, through spot checks or planned inspections, raising the overall quality of the industry.” Ginde said that more Phase II and III trials are being entrusted to the country. The other main trends in the Indian CRO industry of late include more CROs becoming involved in new business development, especially in the areas of data management and trial management.

Quintiles Transnational and Durham developer Tri Properties broke ground today on Quintiles Plaza, the 252,000 square-foot future headquarters for the drug research company. The project will include a 207-room Westin hotel, which is expected to be completed by 2009. On this occasion, the chief executive officer Dennis Gillings said, “The company chose this site because of its proximity to the airport and visibility from Interstate 40.”

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