CIT launches LeadScreen (TM), a new range of fast, cost-effective services for drug candidate selection

CIT, a leading European non-clinical CRO specialized in health and safety research, announces today a new range of fast and economical services to meet the growing needs of companies developing the drugs of tomorrow. The services, grouped under the name LeadScreen (TM), offer an extensive array of tests designed to give an early evaluation of safety of drugs thought to have development potential. Currently, around 20 per cent of candidate drugs fail during standard regulatory non-clinical studies, too often due to late identification of toxicological effects. Using CIT’s LeadScreen (TM), the early detection of potential toxicity can significantly increase the chances of success when the candidate drug goes through the later stages of non-clinical development. The speed, competitive price and efficacy of LeadScreen (TM) offers the ability to reduce considerably the financial cost and time associated with standard drug development practices.

The new LeadScreen (TM) services are fast. From the start of the study to delivery of the results takes only 14 days – a real competitive advantage over tests currently on the market. As well as saving time, LeadScreen (TM) presents other advantages such as its requirement for only a small quantity of the compound – and attractive pricing.

LeadScreen (TM) offers services that are easy to customize, standalone and entirely optional. They comprise:

* LeadScreen (TM) Tox allows more precise selection of the future drug candidate. Using CIT’s expertise in toxicology, genomics and biomarker analysis, LeadScreen (TM) Tox offers a multi-criteria toxicology study that can be critical in deciding which pre-selected molecules should be pursued. In a four-day predictive study, LeadScreen (TM) Tox combines the clinic (daily clinical examinations), clinical biology, histopathology, toxico-genomics, biomarker identification, in vivo micronuclei and toxico-kinetics.

* LeadScreen (TM) Genotox allows the evaluation of the genotoxicity of candidates using BlueScreen (TM) tests, mini-Ames and mini-micronucleus.

* LeadScreen (TM) Safety allows the evaluation of pharmacological safety parameters, such as QT prolongation and other cardiovascular parameters in vivo.

* LeadScreen (TM) PK allows the definition of in vivo half-life and bioavailability.

* devTox (TM) and cardioTox (TM): LeadScreen (TM) also includes tests offered by CIT’s Wisconsin-based partner, Stemina Biomarker Discovery. These use metabolomics and embryonic human stem cells to identify biomarkers for developmental (devTox (TM) and cardiac toxicity (cardioTox (TM).

“CIT’s LeadScreen (TM) enables our customers to perform research on candidate molecules included in development programs prior to their entry into the more advanced stages of pre-clinical research – and it provides pertinent data that make it easier to identify candidate drugs that have the best safety profile,” said Sophie Baratte, CEO at CIT. “Moreover, these data also allow clients better to define and conduct regulatory studies, while increasing the probability of bringing a candidate drug to market. LeadScreen (TM) is a great complement to the wide ranging safety evaluation services that CIT carries out during regulatory pre-clinical research.”

About CIT:

CIT is a science-driven, independent, non-clinical contract research organization (CRO) specialized in safety and health research. Founded in 1969, CIT has carried out a vast number of projects for international companies on human and veterinary pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, chemicals, agrochemicals and consumer products. It has contributed to many product registrations around the world.  With a staff of 360, CIT offers a full range of research in general toxicology, reproductive toxicology, carcinogenicity, pharmacokinetics and safety pharmacology. The company also carries out research into genetic toxicology, in vitro testing and toxico-genomics. Its 20,000-square meter (215,000 sq ft) facilities located in Normandy, one hour from Paris, France, house all principal laboratory animal species to the highest standards. Laboratory facilities include analytical chemistry and bioanalysis, clinical pathology, genomics and histology. Support facilities include archives and plant buildings. The company is GLP and AAALAC certified. More than half the company’s business comes from international customers. Overall, 80 per cent of revenues are in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology sector. Biotechnology and start-up companies alone account for 50 per cent. The company has a world-class team of top-level management in scientific, financial and business activities. For more information about CIT, visit