PMG Research has merged with Carolinas Research Associates (CRA). PMG Research, headquartered in Winston-Salem, N.C., is a network of 10 wholly-owned clinical research sites in North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. CRA is located in Charlotte, N.C., where PMG also has a research facility.
Jennifer Byrne, president and CEO of PMG Research, said the merger with CRA “fits with our strategy to acquire long-standing premier site networks that are aligned with our mission and culture of providing unparalleled service to our clinical trial partners while staying committed to progress, integrity and excellence.”
Yvonne McCracken, founder, CEO and president of CRA, will transition to PMG along with the rest of the current CRA staff.
The merger will position PMG as one of the largest sites in the Charlotte region. In Charlotte, PMG partners with 10 practicing physician investigators at six practice locations and has a research database of over 18,000 patients. CRA partners with 12 to 15 investigators at seven locations and maintains a research database of over 10,000.
The deal is a “huge opportunity for growth, allowing us to offer trials to a greater number of potential trial participants,” said Leigh Smith, manager of clinical operations at PMG of Charlotte. PMG’s geographic reach in the Charlotte area also has been extended, as CRA’s existing physician partners are spread out from Charlotte to Rock Hill, S.C.
It also means collaboration with more physician investigators across a wider range of therapeutic areas, increased physician referrals to the PMG network and better access to patients via the expanded database, allowing more integration of the newly merged organizations.
“Partnering with PMG makes available to CRA the resources to do so much more without interrupting what we’re already doing,” said McCracken. “We’re not changing the way we do anything—we’re merely adding to our capabilities. We can continue to move ahead with strategic growth initiatives because of the resources we now share.”
Dr. George Raad, a family medicine physician and long-time investigator with PMG of Charlotte, said, “Because we now have a broader range of therapeutic areas and a larger network of physician investigators, we can easily and seamlessly connect patients with a wider range of studies than we were able to before. The merger presents a huge opportunity for participants and the Charlotte community as a whole.”
Fred Fowler, M.D., one of CRA’s first Principal Investigators, also is optimistic about the opportunities the merger represents. “I see it as the natural evolution of these two dynamic organizations, and I look forward to partnering with the ‘new’ PMG.”
Established in 1979, PMG is an integrated site network that has conducted over 6,000 clinical research trials in indications including diabetes, hypertension, gout and dermatological conditions such as acne and rosacea, as well as numerous vaccines. Carolinas Research Associates was founded in 1996 and, as an investigator site network has historically focused on gastrointestinal, dermatology, internal medicine and rheumatology disorders.