Contract research organizations (CROs) have transformed the way research are conducted by several pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical devices companies in ways more than one. These organizations offer a variety of services such as biopharmaceutical development, clinical trials conduct and other endeavors, drug discovery activities, product commercialization, assay development, and pharmacovigilance. The intensifying demand for new therapies and devices has mounted pressures on research and development (R&D) budgets of these organizations. Coupled with this, the increasing complexity of clinical trials and fast-paced changing regulatory framework associated with commercialization of new products are crucial factors propelling the demand for CROs services world over. CROs are equipped with skill and potential to offer time-bound services for the completion of clinical trials and help reinforce confidence among stakeholders and sponsors. In addition, the role of CROs services include helping companies partake in endorsing new treatment regimes.
CRO services may be sought by large pharmaceutical and biotech companies and small players essentially for different reasons. Large-scale patent expiries of a number of blockbuster drugs and rising initiatives of generic drug companies have led to dwindling revenue margins for prominent pharmaceutical companies in recent years. As a consequence, R&D funding has also diminished proportionately. This has led to limited scope for these companies for innovations and keep up the trend for aggressive growth. This has propelled the demand for CROs among these players. Several small and medium enterprise focused on conducting trials on new therapies, assays, and devices seek advanced research expertise, thereby bolstering the demand for various CRO services.
Contract research organizations (CROs) are support systems for the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device industries. These organizations facilitate research services outsourced by companies on contractual basis. CROs provide services such as biopharmaceutical drug development, biologic assay development, preclinical, clinical and post clinical trials, pharmacovigilance, and others. CROs also provide services to NGOs, foundations, research institutions, universities, and government bodies. The structure of CROs range from large international full-service organizations to small niche specialty groups. CROs that provide specialty services such as clinical trials offer expertise in the process of new drug or device from its time of conception till FDA / EMA marketing approval.
Rising prevalence of diseases such as cardiovascular, diabetes, and oncological, robust pipeline of pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical products, increasing expenditure on research and development, rising emphasis on innovative treatment therapies for existing as well upcoming diseases, growing demand for outsourcing analytical testing, and optimal service provided by the CROs are the major factors driving the global CRO service market. However, restraining factors such as difficulty in aligning personnel expertise for specific projects and unavailability of highly skilled scientists causes inability to meet the requirement.
The global CRO services market has been segmented based on product type, therapeutic area, end-user, and region. In terms of product type, the market has been segmented into early phase development, clinical research, laboratory, and consulting services. Based on therapeutic area, the market has been segmented into oncology, central nervous system disorders, respiratory diseases, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and others. In terms of end-user, the market has been segmented into pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical companies, medical device companies, academic and research institutes, NGOs, and others. In terms of region, the global CRO services market has been segmented into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa.
The contract research organizations (CROs) services market is witnessing strong growth owing to increasing complexity of clinical trials, greater number of regulatory hurdles, and high investment required for infrastructure that results in greater clinical trials cost. As a result, rising number of pharmaceutical companies are partnering with CROs having the requisite infrastructure and expertise to manage costs and deadlines. Moreover, increasing focus on specialty drugs is likely to fuel the market as specialty drugs require scientific expertise and highly tailored clinical trials that significantly increases costs.
North America dominated the global CRO services market. High quality standards in the pharmaceutical industry, increased expenditure by governments on research and development in health care, rapid growth in the biosimilars and biological market, emerging biopharmaceutical industry, and rising demand for outsourcing are the major factors accelerating the growth of the CRO services market in North America. Europe is the second largest market due continuous innovation in medical technology with increasing investment by key players for research and development. Asia Pacific has significant potential in the CRO services market due to high availability of subjects for preclinical and clinical trials due to rising populations and increasing prevalence of diseases.
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Major players in the global CRO services market are Quintiles Transnational Holdings Inc., Laboratory Corporation Of America Holdings, Pharmaceutical Product Development, LLC, PAREXEL International Corporation, ICON plc, PRA Health Sciences, Inc., InVentiv Health, Inc., Charles River Laboratories International, Inc., INC Research Holdings, Inc., and Wuxi PharmaTech (Cayman) Inc., among others.