The survey includes responses of more than 500 industry leaders representing North American, European, and multinational companies.
Underpinning the industry’s transformation, the research finds, is its progress along the digital plant maturity model, with companies of all sizes adopting an ‘agility mindset’.
In addition, digitalization investments are driving advances in drug discovery, quality control and regulatory compliance.
In his summary exploring the industry’s renewed focus on patient access, CRB vice president of life sciences, Noel Maestre said: “The distance between an emerging therapy with regulatory approval and mainstream access for the patients who need it remains wide in many cases.”
For that to change, he writes “funding systems designed to support ongoing treatment need to prepare for a future of one-time curative therapies. The science behind these new advanced modalities is way too promising and can only be held back for so long by financial hurdles until the floodgates finally break wide open.”
In addition, the report reveals that 93% of respondents said their companies are implementing strategies to collect, analyze and act on data.
Furthermore, more than three quarters said plans were in place to use AI tools within the next two years to help speed their products to market. For example, many companies are using AI to design molecules, which reduces safety risks and regulatory complexity.
Niranjan Kulkarni, senior director of consulting services, and Ryan Thompson, senior specialist for industry 4.0, wrote in the report: “Adopting a mindset of manufacturing in the early stages can lead to significantly faster technology transfers and reduced time for regulatory filings. Further, with the flexibility and scalability of cloud and software-as-a-service offerings it’s often cheaper to take this approach versus developing complicated, paper-based data collection programs and incurring the associated technical debt.”
CRB's research also explores shifts within mRNA technologies, cell and gene therapies and antibody drug conjugates as manufacturers place increased focus on increasing patient access to groundbreaking therapies.