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In quest to digitize clinical research data collection, Clinical Research IO raises $1.6M

Clinical Research IO, or CRIO, is a health IT startup that has joined the e-sourcing trend as technology companies try to simplify the data collection process for clinical research. The Cambridge, Massachusetts-based company has raised $1.6 million to support pilot studies of its technology with pharmaceutical companies and to ramp up its staff from five to 11 across customer service, sales, and software support, cofounder and co-CEO Raymond Nomizu told MedCity News in a phone interview.

NXT Ventures, a Boston-based early stage venture firm, and Silicon Valley investor Rally Ventures led the financing round with participation from CRIO's officers, angel investors and customers. Sankesh Abbhi, a clinical research entrepreneur, angel investor Joe Caruso, and Dr. William Hsu, an endocrinologist with Joslin Diabetes Center, who also serves as CRIO's medical adviser, took part in the round as well, according to a news release. Earlier this year, CRIO raised an $800,000 seed round which NXT Ventures and Rally Ventures led.

Nomizu noted that most clinical research is currently done with a pen and paper, the source data is then manually entered into a computer with the additional step of verifying that the electronic data and paper-based data match. CRIO's website and Android app allow users to conduct clinical research site visits remotely via a tablet or desktop, manage and schedule subjects, and communicate with study monitors. The idea is that researchers configure e-source templates and use CRIO's application to capture data quickly and accurately.

"We can improve on the quality of data capture," Nomizu said.

Nomizu, who has run Beacon Clinical in Quincy, Massachusetts, said he was motivated to launch CRIO with Phuc Truong from personal frustration with the slow pace of paper-based data collection for clinical studies.

"I have always been frustrated by the endless binders and stacks of paper at my clinic. My coordinators would have to worry about accidentally skipping over some part of a procedure. A monitor's post-it note would fall out of a binder and get missed," Nomizu said in a statement.

Nomizu partnered with Medidata through the technology company's eConnect partner program.

Several companies have shown an interest in the eSource space. Clinical Ink has been around for some time, but more recently Veeva Systems announced products for eSource and electronic data capture in October with plans to roll them out next year.