MPI Research today announced it has acquired the assets of Kalamazoo, Mich.-based Jasper Clinical Research & Development, Inc. Jasper is a respected clinical research organization that provides early-stage human clinical testing of promising new drugs, and is well known to pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies worldwide.
The acquisition includes the Jasper Clinic, a 50-bed clinical trial unit that provides a wide range of early-stage study services, including pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamics, drug interaction and methodology studies, as well as expertise in integrating pharmacogenetics and biomarkers into studies. The three-story, 25,000-square-foot clinic is located on the downtown Kalamazoo campus of Bronson Hospital, and is physically connected to Bronson's Level 1 trauma center.
"The addition of the Jasper Clinic is an important step toward making MPI Research the leading 'one-stop' resource for the early drug development community. From candidate selection in discovery, through preclinical safety assessment, proof-of-distribution imaging studies, and now, clinical trials, we can offer the full continuum of lead to proof-of-concept services for new drug candidates," said MPI Research Chairman and CEO William U. Parfet.
"Jasper has an outstanding reputation within the drug development community, and gives our company the opportunity to further strengthen our collaborative relationships with other life science organizations located in the immediate vicinity, including Bronson Methodist Hospital and the new Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine, as we work together to advance therapies that improve lives."
The original clinical facility, known today as Jasper Clinic, was constructed in 1984 when it operated as the internal Phase I testing unit of The Upjohn Company. It became Jasper Clinic in 2003, an independent operation that was formed when Pfizer, Inc. and Pharmacia Corporation merged in April 2003.
Many of the Jasper staff have been with the Clinic throughout these organizational changes. HR Senior Director, Teri Nizzardini commented, "We are excited to integrate the 80+ Jasper Clinic staff members into the MPI Research family."
"Jasper Clinic has been committed to providing clinical trial Sponsors with exceptional speed, flexibility, and value. I know MPI Research shares this commitment in every phase of their operations," said Dean Knuth, founder of Jasper Clinic. "This is a unique and exciting opportunity for us to become part of a contract research organization that truly offers bench to bedside services. Moreover, the close proximity to the bioanalytical laboratories at MPI Research will greatly enhance our ability to provide quick turnaround services, particularly with first-to-file opportunities for those generic drug Sponsors performing bioequivalence studies."
The acquisition marks the second major service expansion by MPI Research in the past year. In September 2013, the company, along with partners inviCRO and 3D Imaging, broke ground on the Translational Imaging Center, which includes a cyclotron and specialized services. The Translational Imaging Center is connected to a world-class vivarium, and is slated to begin operation later this spring.
This facility and the expertise associated with it will permit drug radiolabeling and in-depth distribution studies across a wide variety of animal and human models. Both initiatives – the Translational Imaging Center and Jasper Clinic – will provide biopharmaceutical companies with the opportunity to move their drugs and devices more efficiently along the development pathway.