Platform to facilitate rapid deployment of trials to test vaccines and treatments
Hoboken, New Jersey: March 26, 2020: Castor, a health-tech company that enables medical researchers to capture machine readable data to optimize medical decision making, announced the launch of its global COVID-19 monitoring and research platform to facilitate the rapid deployment of trials to test Coronavirus vaccines and COVID-19 treatments. After offering free access to their platform for all COVID-19 research projects in mid-February, Castor is now supporting over 50 studies.
Castor’s platform includes an online enrollment portal for patients, an eConsent module, and a Symptom Tracker app, all integrated with Castor’s Electronic Data Capture (EDC) system. This platform is freely available for everyone fighting COVID-19, including biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. The platform was designed to be rapidly configured and deployed.
Following easy online enrollment and eConsent, patients are randomized in the EDC. Depending on country protocols, vaccines can then be shipped to enrolled subjects and administered in their homes. In addition, real-time dashboards enable study personnel to monitor the population and proactively reach out to patients who are showing symptoms of COVID-19. These patients could then be enrolled in further interventional studies or triaged in a hospital.
Launching the platform, Castor CEO Derk Arts, MD, PhD, said: “High-quality data and real-time access are critical in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. We are proud to support the global research effort by launching a mobile-enabled solution that allows decentralized patient participation and remote monitoring of study participants. This will help reduce hospital crowding, protect staff, and prioritize patients that need to be hospitalized.”
Craig Serra, Global Head of Strategy and Innovation, Data Operations at Novartis, and Castor Advisory Board member, added: “With increased disruption to clinical trials, it is essential for medical research to adopt methods for remote engagement and monitoring, outside of a clinical setting. Now is the time, more than ever, to stop talking about solutions and take action on them.”
Alongside this platform, Castor is supporting research into the disease by providing free access to their research data platform for all COVID-19 studies. By enabling large-scale decentralized trials, Castor aims to accelerate the work of researchers who are trying to combat the disease. Castor is currently supporting more than 50 COVID-19 studies across nine countries. This includes research projects at the University Hospital Southampton in the UK, Policlinico Universitario A. Gemelli in Italy, Vall d’Hebron Research Institute in Spain, and UMC Utrecht in the Netherlands.
Denise Van Hout, MD, an Epidemiologist and member of the team at UMC Utrecht using Castor to study COVID-19 preparedness of healthcare workers, added: “In the race to understand and develop treatments and vaccines for this disease, Castor’s platform is making a difference by supporting free research projects that can be rapidly built and deployed.”
For more information about Castor and the COVID-19 monitoring and research platform please contact:
COVID-19 support team
John Ambrose, Esq
Head of Marketing
Media & IR Enquiries
Optimum Strategic Communications
Mary Clark/ Hollie Vile/Manel Mateus
Tel: +44 (0) 20 3922 1906
NOTES TO EDITORS
Based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands and New Jersey, US, Castor is an international health-tech company founded by CEO Derk Arts, MD, PhD to leverage machine readable data to increase clinical trial efficiency. Castor’s Electronic Data Capture (EDC) system enables every researcher worldwide to easily capture and integrate medical research data from any source in real-time, including clinicians, patients, devices, wearables, and EHR systems.
More than 40,000 researchers across 90 countries are using Castor to supercharge their research. Castor’s platform has supported more than 4,100 commercial and academic studies that cover a broad range of disease areas including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, rare diseases, infectious diseases, and oncology. Researchers on the platform generate vast amounts of data from traditional and decentralized trials, and Castor recently reached milestones of 140,000,000 data points and 1,500,000 enrolled patients. Castor’s goal is to make the world’s research data reusable, enabling AI-driven clinical trials, and ultimately creating a future in which they maximize the impact of data through reuse.
In 2018 Castor raised $6.25m in funding from early-stage investor INKEF Capital in the Netherlands.
Castor encourages all COVID-19 researchers in need of standardized, high quality data to start their studies by registering here, and to visit their online academy to become familiar with the platform. The WHO-defined CRFs can be downloaded here.