Clinical trial company Science 37 buys life sciences platform from Vault Health

Steven Loeb · February 2, 2023 · Short URL:

The company says the purchase will accelerate its development plans for workflow features

When it comes to clinical trials, there are a number of factors that can stand in the way of someone participating, including travel time, costs, geographic distance, recruiting diverse patients, and a shortage of clinical researchers. That had led to the rise of decentralized clinical trials, where communication and data collection happen virtually. 

The decentralized trial space especially took off during the pandemic, when people were restrictred from participating in person, with companies like Medable, ObvioHealth, Castor, AntidoteHumanFirst, and Hawthorne Effect all raising large amounts of money.  The space even saw one company enter the public market: Science 37, which debuted on Nasdaq in late 2021 via a SPAC merger.

Now that company has announced its first acquisition, purchasing the life sciences platform from telehealth company Vault Health.

Founded in 2014, Science 37's operating system includes a technology platform and network capabilities, which are designed to accelerate clinical research studies. The company is able to enroll patients faster, retain patients longer, and also get underserved patients into those studies.

The company is designed to go directly to where patient already are, rather than going to those individual sites. It serves them through telemedicine investigators, mobile nurses and remote coordinators.

For example, in one instance, a biotech company had a blood test to predict colorectal cancer. They hired a contract research organization to set up a network of hospital sites around the US and enroll patients; after two months, they had only enrolled about 100 patients out of the 14,000 they needed. After Science 37 got involved, they split the number up, meaning that the CRO would do 7,000 and Science 37 would do 7,000. After the first full month of enrollment, Science 37 had enrolled 2,000 patients; after the halfway point, the company had enrolled 5,400 patients. At that point, the CRO had not enrolled even 1,000 patients.  

In another instance, there was a study being done on lung cancer, which required targeting a very finite population that actually specific characteristics. Science 37 went to a genetics company to identify the patients that would fit this study and then asked the providers themselves to become an investigator for their patient.

Buying these capabilities from Vault Health is meant to enhance Science 37's clinical trial workflow orchestration and data interoperability capabilities, the company said, while also accelerating its development plans for workflow features. That includes advanced scheduling and investigational product tracking, and data exchange with Electronic Data Capture and Electronic Medical Record systems.

In addition, the company also says the acquisition will allow it to be cash flow neutral within the calendar year, allowing it to avoid planned spending.

“We are fortunate to be able to acquire such a valuable asset today to advance many of our high-priority development plans for the future,” David Coman, Chief Executive Officer of Science 37, said in a statement.

“From a technology standpoint, the Vault Health life science platform has a parallel technology architecture making it reasonably simple to integrate and, from a delivery perspective, this acquisition will have an efficiency impact as early as the second half of 2023.”

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