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Pharma Companies Seek Help With Potentially Toxic Drugs

September 19, 2012 - NEW YORK, NY

The toxicity of drugs is an important concern for pharmaceutical manufacturers, as seen with fairly recent scares such as Vioxx, FenPhen and Baycol -- products that seemed to be free of toxicity challenges during testing but caused damage to patients once launched. For many companies, this means considering these issues early, at the discovery stage, and often requires the assistance of an outsourcing company. Healthcare market research publisher Kalorama Information projects that there could be a $1.1 billion market by 2015 for companies that can help pharmaceutical companies with early toxicology services. This projection was made in its most recent report: Early Toxicology: Markets and Approaches.

"Toxicity properties are not the same as chemical discovery ones, they are biological and descriptive; they are not as easy to quantify," said Melissa Elder, Kalorama Information analyst and author of the report. "It is common now to turn over this process to specialist companies."

At first glance, the discovery of new drugs is a straightforward process of screening compound candidates, optimizing leads, performing pre-clinical evaluations and then, with these steps completed, clinical trials can begin. According to the report, the reality is not so neat. These activities often overlap, merge, and conflict with each other. Early toxicology testing is emerging as one of the most significant areas of drug discovery, and an integral part of all aspects of drug discovery and development.

"Early toxicology is done not only to discover problem compounds, but also to provide directions for compound development," Elder said.

To assist in the process, service suppliers have expanded their range of offerings into the discovery area, now that pharmaceutical companies have become more willing to have early toxicology tests run by others. Kalorama details many of the companies offering early toxicology services in its report. CROs like Covance, Accelrys, Charles River, Albany Molecular, CeeTox and Quintiles are among those that offer either computer modeling, in vitro assays or animal testing services.

Kalorama Information's report, Early Toxicology: Markets and Approaches, contains segment market estimates for early toxicology, profiles of key companies and interviews with pharmaceutical experts.

About Kalorama Information
Kalorama Information, a division of, supplies the latest in independent medical market research in diagnostics, biotech, pharmaceuticals, medical devices and healthcare; as well as a full range of custom research services. We routinely assist the media with healthcare topics. Follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn and our blog.

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