UCB's Global Corporate Website

Discovery to design to delivery: how patients are helping us innovate

Posted by
Kate Trenam, Early Patient Engagement

Discovering and developing new medicines is a key part of what we do here at UCB. But we believe that a new medicine is only truly valuable and innovative if it’s meaningful to patients. It has to be a solution that patients really want, and which makes a genuine difference to their lives.

The creation of meaningful medicines at UCB doesn’t happen by luck or by chance, it happens because we work hard to implement partnerships with patients at all stages of the drug development process.

There is growing evidence that patients’ contributions during the very early stages of drug development can have a positive impact on research into new drugs. Because at this stage researchers are gaining an understanding of patient communities and their unmet needs, patient-friendly research approaches and identifying meaningful outcome measures for patients. Who better to inform these processes than the patients themselves?

At UCB we have developed a new end-to-end framework designed to ensure that patients and key stakeholders can provide input as early as possible into our research and development programs, as well as the entire drug lifecycle.  At the clinical trial stage, we co-create protocols with patients / patient advocacy groups to help us assess protocol complexity and minimize the burden on patients.

Today, approximately 46% of our trials also have a Decentralized Clinical Trials (DCT) patient-centric component. DCTs help to make our clinical trials more accessible and easier to participate in for patients who may not be able to easily access a clinical trial in person, and they can help us to reach patients living in under-represented geographies.

In the area of Parkinson’s, we have joined forces with Parkinson’s UK, and the Parkinson's Foundation in the U.S., to establish a Patient Engagement Council for Parkinson’s Research (PECPR). The aim of the council is to ensure that patient insights are central to the overall strategy and activities across UCB’s Parkinson’s Disease research and early clinical development program. Through this collaborative partnership, the council aims to embed patient involvement in the earliest stages and throughout each step of UCB’s Parkinson’s drug development program.

At UCB we celebrate the fact that patients are increasingly active and empowered when it comes to decisions about their healthcare – they are no longer ‘customers’, but more ‘co-creators’ in the R&D process. We celebrate it because we hope that by closing the gap between scientists and patients, we can discover new ways to target the drivers of disease.

To learn more about how innovation drives everything we do visit Innovation is | UCB

Leave a Comment

By submitting your personal data, you agree with UCB's Data Privacy Policy. Furthermore, for more information on the terms of use of this website please visit our Legal Notice, accessible here.


Enter the characters shown in the image.