Harnessing the collective power of patients needing new treatments and therapies to speed up and lessen the cost of the development process drives a new venture called CollabRX.
Jay M. Tenenbaum, Collab RX founder, learned he had melanoma in 1998 and had a recurrence five years ago. He found many patient advocacy groups working to raise awareness of the deadly skin cancer and to raise money for research, but felt they lacked collaboration.
Tenenbaum saw a business opportunity in that lack of collaboration and founded CollabRX with $2 million of his own money.
The Wall Street Journal profiled Tenenbaum and his new company this week. An excerpt from the Journal:
CollabRx aims to expand patient-funded research
further by connecting individuals or small numbers of patients with the
tools and services they need. Each CollabRx client is assigned a
project manager, a specialist who works with patients to devise a
research strategy, interpret the results and later steer any promising
prospects toward development of possible treatments.
CollabRx calls such integrated projects virtual
biotechs because they aim to replicate many of the steps typically
taken as part of a pharmaceutical or biotech company’s search for a new
drug. As the number of private labs available to do sophisticated
research grows, many parts of the drug-development process can now be
contracted separately. Researchers in various locations can share
information and material by means of a Web-based network created by
CollabRx software engineers.