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Q2 Solutions, HSBlox, and R3 successfully conduct proof-of-concept blockchain application in clinical research

Wed, 26 Jun 2019, 06:35 am UTC

Leading U.S.-based global clinical trial laboratory services organization Q2 Solutions has collaborated with HSBlox and carried out a sample tracking proof-of-concept (POC) of human biological samples in clinical trials using digital ledger technology (DLT).

According to its press release, the POC simulated collection, transportation, test result generation, and storage of the sample. It aims to implement a flawless chain of custody, avoiding missing or contaminated samples, incomplete data, substandard logistics, and delays in reporting results, using blockchain.

The POC has reportedly shown that a blockchain-based sample tracking solution can streamline the collection and sharing of information. Multiple stakeholders with their own system and data repositories represent a smart distributed network used for collecting and distributing clinical and operational data relevant to the trial and its outcome.

Using the Digital Sample Manager (DSM) application of HSBlox, stakeholder entities can easily share data and trace transaction details in real-time and on a permission basis using smart contracts, thus improving the efficiency and transparency of the data management process and validity of clinical trials.

The DSM utilized the Corda blockchain platform of R3, an enterprise blockchain software company, and was deployed in Microsoft Azure.

This project, which requires highly accurate tracking through a complex chain which might be made up of many different parties, is ideally suited to blockchain. The decentralized nature of blockchain ensures transparency and trust, while Corda's enhanced privacy and security technology can ensure that sensitive data is handled with the appropriate care,” R3 CEO David E. Rutter said.

Meanwhile, blockchain-enabled genome sequencing startup Nebula Genomics has inked its first pharma partnership with EMD Serono to help the Merck KGaA’s biopharmaceutical arm to enhance its research efforts on developing new medicines by gaining access to Nebula’s network of anonymized genome data.

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