Asia-Pacific attracts 50% of global clinical trials

By Jane Byrne

- Last updated on GMT

© GettyImages/Richard Drury
© GettyImages/Richard Drury

Related tags Clinical trials

The Asia-Pacific (APAC) region was the largest contributor to the global clinical trial landscape from 2017 to 2021, accounting for more than 50% of conducted trials during the analysis period, found research by GlobalData.

The study, which was commissioned by APAC focused biotech specialist CRO, Novotech, found that all phases of clinical trials in the region registered higher growth than both the US and the EU.

The region registered significantly higher growth than the US and the EU across all analysed therapeutic areas, including CNS diseases, cardiovascular diseases, gastrointestinal diseases, and infectious diseases, the latter of which witnessed the highest growth, reported the GlobalData team.  

There was also 100% growth in oncology trials during the same period, according to the review.

GlobalData analysis links that growth to a range of factors, including site availability, particularly for oncology trials, when compared to the US and Europe, along with lower operating costs.

Overseas drug makers have never been keener to access the burgeoning APAC market, commented the researchers.

“The APAC region has become the preferred destination for conducting clinical trials due to its large patient population, ease of regulatory compliance, low cost of conducting studies, high-quality standards and the presence of top clinical institutions acting as sites,”​ said the analysts.

China's regulatory reforms a growth driver 

Notably, China’s regulatory reforms have accelerated drug approval by reducing the overall review and process, they added.

“China recorded the largest number of new trials during the assessed period, followed by the US and India; China and India together accounted for around 40% of the total trials recorded among the countries of interest. In China, the number of new trials doubled during 2017-2021.”

The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic did not significantly impact China’s research activity, found the report.   

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