Michael J. Fox Foundation expands Fox Trial Finder
The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (MJFF) has launched the Fox Trial Finder (www.foxtrialfinder.org) in the UK, Ireland and Canada.
This first-of-its-kind online platform anonymously connects volunteers with and without Parkinson’s disease to clinical trials in critical need of participants.
Fox Trial Finder matches volunteers with the trials most likely to need them, increasing the efficiency of the enrolment process and empowering patients to get more involved in the discovery of new treatments.
It comes after a study by the MJFF found that 85 percent of Parkinson’s patients wanted to be better informed about clinical trials, while 61 percent said they didn’t know where they could find information about clinical trials.
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The organisation also discovered that more than three in four Parkinson’s patients wished there was a secure and anonymous online tool to help them locate clinical trials in their area.
“Fox Trial Finder is a practical, user-friendly solution to help everyday people get involved in research,” said Todd Sherer, CEO of The Michael J. Fox Foundation.
“Its matching capability removes one of the roadblocks to participation by making it easier to find the right trials.
“The tool instantaneously sorts through scores of trials to find the ones that specifically need you.
“And once you save a profile, Fox Trial Finder will continually alert you to your best matches as new trials launch, without you having to come back to the site to search again.”
Meanwhile Tom Isaacs, Co-founder of The Cure Parkinson’s Trust, London, UK, added: “We know people with Parkinson’s are constantly looking for ways to participate in clinical research.
“The introduction of Fox Trial Finder as a platform to learn more about trials will help to grow the clinical research community and encourage more people to enrol in trials which will help lead us to a cure for Parkinson’s.
“As someone with Parkinson’s myself, I am passionate about the role clinical trials play in translating science into actual treatments and a tool like Fox Trial Finder brings urgency and efficiency to that goal.
“No matter how much funding, collaboration and effort are put behind drug development, research cannot move forward without the help and involvement of the people who live with Parkinson’s.”
Also commenting on the launch was Dr. Kieran Breen, Director of Research and Innovation at Parkinson’s UK.
“Fox Trial Finder is a really positive step forward in the international effort to help find a cure for Parkinson’s,” he said.
“The more ways we can help people get involved in clinical trials, the more trials can be completed, enabling the development of better treatments and drugs for people with Parkinson’s – and ultimately a cure.”
Launched in beta version last July and officially in April 2012 in the United States, Fox Trial Finder currently includes more than 190 clinical trials in its system, with 60 in the United Kingdom specifically, and nearly 7,000 volunteers have already registered.
The site is now live in the United States, Ireland, Canada, UK and Australia, and is expected to launch in other international locations coming later this year.
Exo to launch ultrasound device enabling real time diagnosis
Medical device company Exo is set to release a new handheld ultrasound device that will enable clinicians to diagnose a variety of conditions in real time.
The company has just closed a $220 million Series C investment round to fund commercialisation of the device. It is in the process of FDA clearance, and Exo has plans to launch it before the end of the year.
The device will enable clinicians to scan and diagnose at the point of care, as opposed to putting an order into radiology and waiting for the ultrasound machine to arrive.
Using ultrasound silicon technology, the device can be used for the entire body, to find veins for IVs, assess heart conditions, and scan lungs for instance. The company say it has been developed for use within chaotic emergency departments, rural clinics, or across multiple departments in a community hospital.
The device works with Exo’s proprietary point-of-care ultrasound workflow solution, called Exo Works. This streamlines assessments, documentation and billing in one platform and in under 60 seconds. The software has also been designed to be interoperable, and works with nearly all point-of-care ultrasound devices, and can connect to the most common EMR systems used in hospitals.
“Exo’s hardware and software were designed in tandem, with the future of decentralised healthcare at the forefront of every decision” Exo CEO Sandeep Akkaraju explained. “Our vision is a healthcare system unconstrained by the four walls of a hospital and engineered for a world where providers can see clearly into every patient immediately.”
The recent Series C funding, with investment from BlackRock and RA Capital, follows a successful Series B funding round, bringing Exo’s total investment to more than $320 million.