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Hawthorne Effect raises $20M with plans to disrupt the decentralized clinical trial space

The new funding is expected to help the company grow and scale.
By Laura Lovett
11:00 am
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Photo courtesy of Hawthorne Effect 

This morning decentralized clinical trial platform Hawthorne Effect scored $20 million in Series A funding, bringing the company's total funding pot to $24 million.

Northpond Ventures led the round with participation from SignalFire and P5 Health Ventures.

WHAT THEY DO

Hawthorne was designed to help capture clinical trial data points beyond a single clinical setting. Its Hawthorne Cloud tool was developed with the goal of supporting researchers with trial recruitment, assessment development, capturing patient-reported outcomes, device data, and can help with interoperability efforts from all clinical visits, according to the company.

"Traditionally, before decentralized, traditionally clinical sites are engaged to conduct clinical trials on behalf of a sponsor," Jodi Akin, CEO and founder of Hawthorne Effect, told MobiHealthNews. "And yes, patients are enrolled at clinics and usually get their data collected over time by coming back and forth to the bricks and mortar. This model enables patients to not have to go to the brick and mortar and have very high-level clinical trial follow-ups done anywhere, any time in the comfort of their home or wherever, a church or barbershop or whatever.

"And the range of sort of data collection can be everything from virtual, but very important and unique to Hawthorne, it could very much be physical so that the physical assessments the lab draws, the specimens, the imaging, all of that can happen with the quality of a Cleveland Clinic, but done anywhere remotely."

The company also has a tool called Hawthorne Heroes, which is a network of providers, the company has trained and equipped to help conduct clinical trial visits in the field.

"I think that the full promise of decentralized clinical trials is both to address the equity diversity divide and to deliver high quality and timely data to those purveyors-the FDA, the decision-makers, and do it in a very economically efficient model. So those are three very, very important goals that we think integrate through a technology-enabled service like Hawthorne Effect," she said.

WHAT IT'S FOR

The new money will go towards growing out the company, which has kept a relatively low profile since it was founded.

"It's total growth and scale. We have really solid infrastructure processes and economic efficiency and scalability of the platform," Akin said. "So, this is really about being above the radar and building roads so that the real disruption can begin. How do you embed at the top of the clinical trial a really disruptive way of thinking about how we design them and how we scale them? So, it's really mostly growth and scale, maybe partnerships as well."

THE LARGER TREND

When it comes to digital decentralized clinical trials, there is quite a bit of competition. In May Science 37, a  decentralized clinical trial operating system developer announced its plans to go public via a merger special purpose acquisition company LifeSci Acquisition II Corp.

Earlier this year, Current Health, a remote patient monitoring platform, launched a new initiative called Community, focused on building diverse longitudinal data sets for decentralized clinical trials.

LabCorp also announced a new tech platform to help streamline the clinical trial and drug development process.

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