In December 2022, Labcorp and Biomakers signed an agreement that will positively impact thousands of cancer patients in Latin America through greater access to diagnostic molecular profiling and participation in clinical trials.
We recently asked Nicolas Kirchuk (NK), CEO and co-founder of Biomakers, and Isagani Chico (IC), MD, VP, global therapeutic head for oncology (Clinical Development and Commercialization Services), a few questions related to the collaboration.
Who is Biomakers and why collaborate?
NK: Biomakers is a molecular and genomic testing company with headquarters in Argentina, offices in San Francisco and laboratories in Brazil, Argentina and Mexico. By generating high-quality genomic information and combining it with clinical data, we develop in-depth scientific and bioinformatics analyses with the aim of providing targeted therapeutic recommendations.
IC: By collaborating with an established organization in the region, Labcorp Drug Development is able to capitalize on Biomakers’ experience and understanding of the unique regulatory and reimbursement hurdles and gain access to the largest biobank of diagnostic and clinical outcomes data in Latin America. This collaboration also further supports our established experience and expertise in providing comprehensive, global clinical trial support for the development of innovative oncology therapeutics.
How will Biomakers and Labcorp collaborate?
IC: Within our agreement, we’ll focus on utilizing Biomakers’ unique retrospective data on the Latin American population (molecular, clinical data and BIOBANK) in support of patient recruitment and enrollment in this region.
In addition, Labcorp and Biomakers will also build a pre-screening program to help identify candidates to be screened for current and future clinical trials. Alongside this work will be the development of a real-time “live” database of patients with clinical and genomic characteristics, the identification of current and potential investigators and clinical sites, and the establishment of a patient referral network in Latin America.
What will the impact of this collaboration be on patients in Latin America?
NK: While Latin America makes up 8% of the world’s population, less than 5% of open and planned clinical trials have sites in the region. We are so thrilled about this collaboration because it addressesan unmet need in Latin America by providing greater access to innovative diagnostic testing and investigational precision medicine treatments for cancer patients in the region.
IC: This collaboration will also help us bring the diversity of Latin American patients into enrolling global clinical trials. There has been a slow shift in the number of pharma companies expanding their oncology trial site selection within Latin America and many are seeking to expand patient access in a low-cost, low-competition region relative to other regions of the world.