Health tech firm Aridhia inks deal with Great Ormond Street

Aridhia chief executive Chris Roche. Picture: John Devlin
Aridhia chief executive Chris Roche. Picture: John Devlin
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A Scots health informatics company has signed a ten-year deal with Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) that will boost the renowned London establishment’s research capabilities.

Aridhia, which is based in Edinburgh and Glasgow’s Queen Elizabeth University Hospital, said that under the agreement, one of its most significant to date, it will deliver research and innovation as part of the hospital trust’s digital transformation.

It is an honour to support such extraordinary researchers

Chris Roche

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It comes as GOSH looks to become a research hospital rather than a hospital that does research.

The company’s chief executive, Chris Roche, said GOSH is “world-renowned and it is an honour to be given the opportunity to support such extraordinary researchers delivering ground-breaking research across multiple clinical domains”.

Aridhia will provide a specific edition of its cloud-based data analysis platform, known as AnalytiXagility, that will be used to enhance the way GOSH manages its research projects. The service will also be integrated with the trust’s new electronic patient record system.

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AnalytiXagility is also part of a “game-changing” £64 million European research collaboration aiming to build a means of efficiently testing treatments to prevent Alzheimer’s disease, and aims to improve how researchers access and analyse data in a secure and reproducible way.

It will let research teams “rapidly access and extract value from a rich source of data in order to accelerate the translation of pioneering research into clinical practice,” Aridhia said.

Roche added: “For [GOSH] to select AnalytiXagility after a rigorous 12-month procurement process is great endorsement of our vision to accelerate clinical research.

“The trust was seeking a secure, scalable research platform that would allow their teams to collaborate on analysis and deliver rapid, auditable and reproducible results.

“AnalytiXagility satisfies these requirements. We are very much looking forward to working with them on this next stage of their research journey.”

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Peter Steer, chief executive of GOSH NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We look forward to working with Aridhia to develop an innovative platform which will transform the way we undertake and collaborate on research.

“This will allow us to bring more life-saving treatments to children with rare diseases in the UK and worldwide.”

The trust in February said Aridhia had been selected as preferred supplier for the research and innovation platform. “This will drive our ability to translate research into clinical practice to further the development of life-changing treatments and cures,” the trust said at the time.

Aridhia was founded in 2007 and Roche told The Scotsman earlier this year that it had been investing in research and development in its platform, which was built for biomedical research, precision medicine and healthcare communities.

Roche, who joined in 2014, also said he was concentrating on the firm’s growth and maximising efficiency, adding that a key benefit of his role was the chance to have “a profound impact on clinical research at scale”.

Pharma giant AstraZeneca has struck a $400 million (£309m) deal with Japanese drugs group Takeda Pharmaceutical to create a treatment for Parkinson’s disease.

The FTSE 100 firm, which in the UK has seven sites and about 6,700 staff, said the transaction will see it bring a specific antibody to market, with Phase 1 clinical trials set for later this year. The move comes after the group saw its share price plunge more than 15 per cent last month when a lung cancer drug failed the first round of the “Mystic trial”.

Mene Pangalos, AstraZeneca’s executive vice-president, said: “Today there are no medicines that can slow or halt the degenerative progress of Parkinson’s disease so this remains a large area of unmet medical need.

“Takeda has an excellent track record in neuroscience research… by combining our scientific expertise and sharing the risks and cost of development, we hope to accelerate the advancement of [antibody] Medi1341 as a promising new approach to support the treatment of people with Parkinson’s disease around the world.”

The deal will see both firms shoulder the commercial and development costs of the project, with any revenues being shared equally.

Emiliangelo Ratti, Takeda’s senior vice-president, said Parkinson’s disease “continues to represent a devastating diagnosis and a burdensome challenge for therapeutic discovery. Our collaboration with AstraZeneca is a sophisticated one… with the aim of improving the lives of patients.”

In July, AstraZeneca said half-year sales had fallen 11 per cent to $10.5 billion after losing patents on profitable drugs.

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